On the same day that Eagles left tackle Jason Peters drew praise for his efforts to return from a torn Achilles’ tendon that derailed his 2012 season, Peters has thrown the Eagles a curve ball by skipping Tuesday’s OTA practice.
Via multiple Twitter accounts maintained by reporters covering the team, Peters isn’t present for practice.
“He’s just not here,” an Eagles spokesman told Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
It’ll be interesting to see if coach Chip Kelly reflects similar nonchalance. Last week, Giants coach Tom Coughlin was irritated by the absence of receiver Hakeem Nicks, saying Nicks “should be here.” But coaches aren’t permitted to say or do anything to suggest that voluntary offseason workouts are anything but voluntary; a statement like “he should be here” seems to fall into the forbidden category.
Coaches are more likely to bristle at the absence of players from offseason practices, given that the 2011 labor deal reduces the workload and ostensibly ensures that there will be no contact. Also, with easier training camps under the new CBA, there’s less reason for players to choose not to attend the non-mandatory practices.
Workout bonuses help ensure participation, to an extent. Most clauses of that nature allow the player to miss some of the sessions. If teams want 100-perception participation, they should start writing the contracts accordingly.