Huskies coach Chris Petersen was a guest on NFL Network's "Path to the Draft" program earlier today, and offered some thoughts on the Huskies' NFL prospects, as well as a few thoughts on Boise State running back Jay Ajayi and Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota.
You can watch the videos -- broken into two segments -- here. And here's a transcript of Petersen's comments.
(On Danny Shelton and whether he can be a three-down player in the NFL) “I think Danny can do whatever he sets his mind to. That’s the one thing that he’s proved to us. I think halfway through the season, if not the sack leader, he was one of the sack leaders in the country, as a 340-pound nose guard. We had him in there to plug up the middle, make run-stopping tackles, and he was sacking the quarterback as much as anybody. So Danny’s a very, very unique, talented guy.”
(On Marcus Peters, and what he would tell an NFL coach who called to ask about him) “Well, I think everybody knows Marcus is really talented. I think any time you go through hard things, like we went through last year with Marcus, the objective is, do we all learn from it and get better? And I think that, you know, when you talk to Marcus, I think we have. And we really hope that he has a really good NFL career.”
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(On Shaq Thompson and what position he should play/wants to play) “I always think that guys need to play where their heart is, whether it’s in Pop Warner football, or it’s in NFL football. And Shaq wants to be a defensive player. You said it – he’s so unique. He can play wherever. And I know what Shaq can do. He can play wherever he sets his mind to. And he sees himself as that linebacker-type guy. But the one thing about Shaq is, he just makes your team better, just with his mentality, his demeanor. And he’s an explosive, explosive football player. So whoever gets him is getting one heck of a player.”
(On Boise State RB Jay Ajayi and how he compares with Doug Martin) “I think they’re comparable in the fact that they’re both elite players. I think their styles are much different, and Jay continued to get better every year of his career, culminating (with) this year, and still having another year of college left, really. And so he’s a big, physical player, and there’s no doubt in my mind that Jay’s going to have a really good, productive NFL career, as well.”
(On Oregon QB Marcus Mariota) “He’s the best player that I’ve seen in a long, long time. I’ve watched him on tape for a long time. I’ve faced him in person, and I’m not sure what there’s any debate about. I mean, the guy is spectacular. There is no doubt he’s going to crush it in the NFL.”
(More on Mariota) “I know the coaches at Oregon real well and I know what they think about him. Then I saw it firsthand, not just one game, but over and over and over, how this guy produces. There’s no doubt he’s going to be an elite NFL player and he’s going to have a spectacular NFL career.”