Instead of Peter, The Bachelor producers chose Arie Luyendyk Jr. to be the franchise's Season 22 star for 2018. While last week's announcement thrilled some fans, Peter supporters were devastated.
"Peter was a great guy -- and by the way, might be a great [Bachelor]," Chris told People of the 31-year-old Wisconsin personal trainer and business owner.
According to widespread reports, Peter was the frontrunner and fan-favorite to be the next Bachelor, so the announcement of Arie's participation was a little shocking.
"Here's the thing: It all comes down to timing. Peter would be a good Bachelor, could be a good Bachelor and may be a good Bachelor," Chris said.
"Maybe he'll end up in Paradise, maybe on the Winter Games. Because Peter didn't get the nod does not mean we had this meeting and thought, 'That's really a bad guy.' He's not! It's not an indictment on him as much as this is the direction we're going to take the show."
Arie competed for Emily Maynard on The Bachelorette's twelfth season in 2012, and the race car driver turned real estate agent claims he hasn't loved a woman since Emily. Arie also says he's definitely ready to propose marriage to the woman of his dreams, while Peter was hesitant to pop the question to Rachel earlier this year.
However, the decision to pass on Peter was "a tough thing for people to handle," according to Chris, who told People the disbelief and outrage on social media did not go unnoticed.
"I love this about Bachelor Nation. I love how fervent they are, I love how passionate they are, and I like that they were upset that we didn't choose Peter," Chris insisted. "That's great, that means you care and you love this guy. Keep rooting for him! He's not dead, he's not gone."
Peter also recently wrote on Instagram that he's grateful and humble the network has treated him with "love and kindness," so it's clear he's on good terms with ABC.
The Bachelor creator Mike Fleiss recently tweeted that the show isn't "done with the shocking announcements," prompting Bachelor Nation to speculate there may be a double-Bachelor twist, but Chris assured the magazine that is "not happening" and Mike was just "trolling" everyone.