Bears coach Matt Nagy: Newly signed Jason Peters is Plan A at left tackle vs. Rams

The Bears’ shaky plan at the position got shakier when second-round pick Teven Jenkins suffered a back injury that could end his season. In less than two weeks, 39-year-old Peters has won the job.

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Peters, 39, won the starting LT job after less than two weeks with the Bears.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Jason Peters is 39 years old, signed less than two weeks ago and hasn’t proven conclusively that he’d be able to make it through a full game. And he’s a better left tackle right now than anyone else the Bears have.

After Peters’ preseason debut Saturday, in which he played 20 snaps against the Titans, Bears coach Matt Nagy said he’s Plan A at the position for the season opener against the Rams on Sept. 12.

“I think so,” Nagy said. “I feel good with Jason... What I’m really impressed with is how well he’s picked up the lingo, the terminology. And he’s so focused. He comes in, he sits back, he hears everything, he’s helping these other guys out. I mean, he’s awesome. That’s all we can ask for.

“Now it’s just the physical side of where he’s at for Week 1. I think that’s a really good acquisition by Ryan [Pace] and his guys to get him in here.”

Even in less-than-optimal shape, Peters overtook fifth-round pick Larry Borom and four-year veteran Elijah Wilkinson for the spot. Borom and Wilkinson don’t have experience on the left side, whereas Peters is a 17-year veteran who made nine Pro Bowls at the position for the Bills and Eagles. He will be a strong Hall of Fame candidate.

The concern with Peters, besides conditioning, is that his last Pro Bowl season was in 2016. He missed 20 games over the next four seasons, including half of the 2020 season.

The Rams were No. 1 in the NFL in scoring defense last season, No. 2 in sacks and opponent passer rating and No. 3 in fewest yards allowed per rush.

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