ARIZONA CARDINALS

Cardinals NT Corey Peters excited to be back on the field following difficult offseason

Sep 14, 2021, 3:30 PM
Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Corey Peters (98) walks out before an NFL game between the Arizo...
Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Corey Peters (98) walks out before an NFL game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Los Angeles Rams on December 29, 2019, at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)


This past offseason was an extra long one for Arizona Cardinals nose tackle Corey Peters.

His 2020 season ended when he got carted off of the field with a torn patellar tendon in Week 10 against the Buffalo Bills.

Peters had to enter free agency as a soon-to-be 33-year-old lineman rehabbing from knee surgery.

“It was incredibly difficult,” Peters said in a press conference on Tuesday. “Obviously, when you have a major injury, a lot of the process is take a step forward and take two steps backwards. So, it can be very frustrating. Very much so a roller coaster of emotions.”

He also mentioned that his contract status created even more stress. But, Peters eventually re-signed with the Cardinals during training camp on Aug. 2.

That gave him roughly five weeks to get ready for the start of the 2021 season with his team.

“When I had surgery, what we talked about was potentially being ready for Week 1,” Peters said. “We weren’t exactly sure if that means ‘Yeah, you’re cleared to play but you haven’t been able to prepare.’ But I’ve been very pleased with the process. I feel like I had time to condition and then work my way back into things.”

On Sunday, Peters took the field with the Cardinals in the season opener against the Tennessee Titans and performed like he never left.

He played just 15 defensive snaps, but in that span, he was a disrupter, especially against the run. He had two tackles for loss and nearly a touchdown return.

In the first quarter, Arizona edge rusher Chandler Jones knocked the ball away from Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill while he rolled out on play-action. Peters picked the ball up and ran towards the end zone. He dove to the goal line, and the initial call was a touchdown.

Upon further review, the officials said he was stopped just short.

“I thought he had some real impactful plays,” Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury said in a press conference on Monday. “He’s such a great presence in that room.”

Peters said that nothing could take away his strong feelings about being back on the field, but he was less bummed about not scoring when he saw the Cardinals offense convert.

Quarterback Kyler Murray hit wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins in the back of the end zone for the first touchdown of the season.

As Peters made an impact early, his confidence rose. As difficult as the offseason was, he is back and in position to have a role, even though he is no longer a starter on the depth chart.

The Cardinals assembled depth on the defensive line over the past couple of offseasons. This will limit the strain on each lineman, as Sunday was showing of how they will rotate players in and out.

Second-year player Rashard Lawrence is now the starting nose tackle, but he says he would not be the player he is without Peters’ guidance.

“He’s taught me so much about the nose tackle position,” Lawrence told the media before the season. “He’s still got a lot left in the tank and he’s a hell of a player.”

Peters called the defensive line depth a strength of the team, and something that will help to keep himself and the rest of the unit fresh throughout a longer 17-game season.

Comments

Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals DL J.J. Watt checks his face after running through a drill during practice Wednes...
Tyler Drake

Cardinals’ J.J. Watt feels for Texans fans, ready to face former team

J.J. Watt undoubtedly has a ton of love for the city of Houston. Come Sunday, however, moving to 7-0 is the biggest thing on his mind.
1 day ago
Zach Ertz of the Arizona Cardinals looks on prior to the game against the Cleveland Browns at First...
Kevin Zimmerman

Keim: Cardinals pursued Zach Ertz trade feeling they ‘had to make a move’

General manager Steve Keim felt that his Arizona Cardinals had no choice but to be aggressive after losing starting tight end Maxx Williams.
1 day ago
Kansas City Chiefs defensive end Chris Jones interacts with Arizona Cardinals tight end Darrell Dan...
Arizona Sports

Texans-Cardinals injury report: Arizona TE Darrell Daniels, DT Rashard Lawrence out

The Cardinals are nicked up at tight end, on the offensive line and at linebacker as they prepare for Week 7 against the Houston Texans.
1 day ago
Arizona Cardinals linebacker Kylie Fitts (49), Cardinals defensive end Chandler Jones (55) and Card...
Arizona Sports

Cardinals OLB Chandler Jones out of COVID-19 protocols, Fitts’ year over

Cardinals outside linebacker Kylie Fitts said on Instagram that his season is over, though it is not clear what has led to his year ending.
1 day ago
The Arizona Cardinals prepare to take the field for a game against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEne...
Tyler Drake

Cardinals OL making up for Hudson absence; Green to Ertz: ‘Play fast’

TEMPE — Not only did the Arizona Cardinals have to deal with a handful of coaches and players testing positive for COVID-19 when they took on the Cleveland Browns last Sunday, they did so without starting center Rodney Hudson, who was placed on the injured reserve with rib and shoulder injuries ahead of the action. […]
2 days ago
Cardinals DL Jordan Phillips looks on during practice Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2021, in Tempe. (Tyler Drak...
Arizona Sports

Report: Cardinals restructure Jordan Phillips’ deal after Zach Ertz add

In order to make the trade for TE Zach Ertz happen, Cardinals GM Steve Keim had to pull some strings with the team's salary cap construction.
2 days ago
Cardinals NT Corey Peters excited to be back on the field following difficult offseason