Hard work, discipline, physicality, and a high football IQ are just some of the staples of success in the NFL, and former Auburn safety Jordyn Peters already knows all about them.
Peters is one of this year’s most experienced prospects at the position. He spoke exclusively with The Draft Network about his time at Auburn, his uncanny ability to block kicks and punts, why he hopes to continue playing on special teams in the NFL, and what kind of player he’ll be at the next level.
JM: I thought you had the best season of your career in 2020. You had 42 tackles, four pass breakups, and an interception. How do you look back on your time at Auburn?
JP: I finished the year strong. I never stopped working. I’m gonna stick to the grind. I’m a football player at the end of the day. I’m always gonna keep working. I’m focused on the big goal right now.
JM: You recently had your Pro Day. What was that like? Tell our readers about some of the numbers you put up.
JP: I had a good day. It was fun. It was the first and only time I’ll get to experience something like that (laughs). I put up some good numbers. I could have run my 40 a bit faster. I had a 39.5-inch vertical. I had a 10-foot-5-inch broad. I recorded solid times in the shuttle and L-drill as well. I had a good day. I was having fun out there. It was a great experience.
JM: You had a great day. What’s your favorite part of playing the safety position?
JP: I enjoy it because it’s really like a free-flowing position. You can do a lot of things while playing the safety position. You can move around. You end up all over the field while playing safety. You have to be very instinctual. Those are some of the things I like about the safety position.
JM: Do you enjoy playing in the box more as opposed to playing as a single-high safety? What do you feel is your best fit?
JP: I can do both. I can play single-high. I can come downhill. I’m pretty good at doing both of those things. If I had to pick one, I would say single-high first and foremost. I also enjoy playing in the box, though.
JM: You’ve spent the last few months meeting with NFL teams via Zoom and in person at your Pro Day. What’s that process been like for you, and who are some of the teams you’ve met with?
JP: The process has gone well. It almost feels like high school all over again (laughs). It’s kinda like being recruited. We’re just trying to build relationships right now. That’s what the last few months have been like. They’re about to pay us a little bit of money so of course, they’re doing their homework. I’m building relationships with everybody. I’ve spoken with a ton of coaches and scouts. I’ve met with the Cardinals, Colts, Saints, and Jets to name a few.
JM: It’s easy to see why you’re getting NFL interest. You’ve blocked quite a few kicks and punts in your career. I found that to be very interesting. How many did you block? What allows you to be so productive in that area?
JP: They credited me with four blocks but it’s really five (laughs). They called one of them a partial block and they didn’t record it officially. The ball didn’t go down the field, which is apparently a criteria that’s deemed necessary. I would say I blocked 4.5 then (laughs).
It comes down to hard work. You have to “want to” be out there on the field during special teams. It takes a certain attitude and mindset. It’s all about effort, you know? I feel like special teams are sometimes the forgotten phase of the game. I try to take advantage of every special teams rep I get. I hope to continue playing on special teams at the next level.
JM: That’s incredible. Playing at Auburn afforded you the opportunity to play against some of the best competition college football has to offer. Who are some of the best offensive players you squared off with?
JP: DeVonta Smith definitely comes to mind first. I played against Calvin Ridley when he was still at Alabama. I played against DK Metcalf and A.J. Brown when they were teammates at Ole Miss. As far as running backs go, Najee Harris is amazing. He’s a freak athlete. Those are some of the best guys I’ve ever played against.
JM: That’s a great list. I’ve really appreciated your time today. In closing, why should an NFL team use one of their draft picks on Jordyn Peters?
JP: I’m coming in to make the team better. I can’t do it any other way. I’m not coming in for myself. I have the team’s best interests at heart. I’m gonna come in and make the entire organization better.