Cowboys, Jason Peters agree to practice squad deal to fortify tackle depth

·2 min read

The Dallas Cowboys have signed veteran left tackle Jason Peters to help them shore up Dak Prescott’s blindside. The front office’s attempt to get to the regular season with limited experience behind starters Tyron Smith and Terence Steele fell flat when Smith couldn’t escape the preseason without suffering a catastrophic injury. For the first time in his illustrious career the future Hall of Famer will miss Week 1, and he’ll miss most of the weeks following that.

To fix the depth and experience issue, the club has signed another future Hall of Famer in Peters, 40, bringing the former Eagle back home to Texas.

Being on the practice squad for Week 1 not only allows the Cowboys to ease Peters into the program, but also keeps them from automatically having to guarantee his entire contract. The terms of the agreement have not yet been made public.

This will be the 18-year veteran’s fourth team after starting his career in Buffalo before spending 11 seasons with Philadelphia and last year in Chicago. He made the Pro Bowl nine straight seasons played, from 2007 through 2016, missing all of 2012, and had First-Team All-Pro campaigns in 2011 and 2013.

Peters will not start immediately, as the Cowboys intend to put the first-round rookie Smith in as the starter for Week 1’s matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

There was a huge elephant in the room staring back at anyone watching the Dallas Cowboys during the preseason. If the elder Smith missed any time, the club was going to struggle mightily at left tackle. Dallas drafted their heir apparent in the first round of April’s draft, selecting Tyler, the Tulsa product. Smith has exceptional physical tools and an aggressive mentality, but his technique needed polishing.

The Cowboys decided he would play guard in Year 1 and looked to get him as much experience there as possible. So Josh Ball, a redshirt sophomore to borrow CFB terminology, moved from the right side Stephen Jones said he was better at to left tackle and failed miserably through three exhibitions. When Tyr. Smith was lost for the majority of the season in a practice, it made Dallas do what they had held off doing, sign a veteran. On Monday, they completed a weekend’s worth of wooing and negotiating.

Story originally appeared on Cowboys Wire