August 4, 2009
Peters ready for the challenge of DT
At 270 pounds, a bulked up Jason Peters is completing the final stages of his transition from defensive end to defensive tackle that began in the spring at Georgia Tech. Defensive line coach Giff Smith has been working extensively with Peters to ease the transition and allow him to excel this season.
"It is pretty exciting for me and it is a big change, but I think I can handle it," Peters said. "Coach believes in me and so do all the other guys. I am going in there and giving it all I got. My biggest goal this year is to go in there and help contribute to the team winning. I am learning my position and I am learning how to do everything the right way."
Peters and Ben Anderson have been leading the first team defense with Logan Walls and T.J. Barnes working behind them. During the offseason, Peters worked on preparing his body for a different set of physical challenges than he was used to.
"My biggest goal in the offseason as always is doing any extra work I can," Peters said. "As far as my weight goes, that played a lot on my mind over the summer. I was wondering if am going to be big enough and will my body mass be able to handle guys from Boston College, Virginia Tech or Miami? The biggest thing the coaches reminded me of was that in our defense you have to be fast enough to run move and catch people by blitzing from many different points. The biggest thing for me was to make sure whatever weight I ended up at I could still run well. That is my biggest goal and I am starting to get there."
Peters has no plans to become a gigantic defensive tackle, he wants to keep his speed and mobility because he thinks it is an advantage against slower guards and centers.
"I can run for days," Peters said. "I have thought about getting a little bigger, but I think I am at a good size right now. In our defense, we do so much stuff that requires moving from any spot to another spot. The other thing is coach Smith wants us to know all four positions because one day I might be at end and another I might be at nose, so I want to be able to do everything. "
On the field, Peters is feeling more comfortable each day as he works with the coaches and his teammates on the adjustment to the inside part of the line.
"I am getting a lot more comfortable with things and the spring was a big learning curve for me," Peters said. "There were a lot of small things I never realized that are big differences between tackle and end, but the more I learn and the more reps I get, the more I am able to hone my technique."
The biggest upside of the move inside is being able to help the team win games immediately and that makes Peters very happy.
"I am very excited about it and my goal is to make sure I do not do anything to mess things up and I will take every advantage I can," Peters said.
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