With the NFL draft just one week away, former Pitt quarterback Nate Peterman has no idea where he’s going to be drafted or who he’s going to be drafted by. No one else seems to either.
One talent evaluator suggested that Peterman’s worked out for nearly every team in the league, which isn’t entirely true, but it’s not far off, either.
He’s performed private workouts or meetings with the Buffalo Bills, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers. Thirty of the 32 NFL teams attended Pitt’s pro day. They all saw him at the Senior Bowl and the combine, and it seems that many are interested.
ESPN analyst and former NFL head coach Jon Gruden said that Peterman, who attended Gruden’s quarterback camp, is one the most NFL-ready arms available in this year’s draft. Sports Illustrated’s Erik Galko said this week that Peterman is one of the most underrated players in the draft and that the New Orleans Saints, San Francisco 49ers and Washington Redskins are interested in him. ESPN’s Mel Kiper, Jr. had Peterman going to the Houston Texans in his “grade A” mock draft.
Peterman himself added the Los Angeles Chargers to the mix. There’s also rumored interest from the Chicago Bears and pretty much every other team under the sun.
So they’ve all seen him. He’s been connected to nearly half of them. Next week, probably Friday, one of them is going to draft him. Which one? When? Nobody seems to know, including Peterman.
“I really have no idea.” Peterman said over the phone from his Jacksonville home this week. “You can talk to all of these teams and the team that takes you could be one that hasn’t talked to you once. I know that happened to a couple of quarterbacks last year. I’m exciting about the possibilities of the teams I have talked to, but at the same time, I”m just trying to keep an open mind.”
The problem, is of course that pretty much every NFL team could use a quarterback and Peterman’s collegiate experience is one that has done a good job of preparing himself for football’s biggest stage. It’s also why he’s not sweating not knowing where he’ll be living for at least the next four years.
Of course, Peterman went to Tennessee out of high school before losing his starting opportunity there to Josh Dobbs, who is now rated significantly lower than Peterman on most draft boards.
Peterman then took a chance in coming to Pitt when the program had an established starter in Chad Voytik, but Peterman earned both playing time and praise while playing in his third and fourth offenses as a collegiate player.
So Peterman comes out of college with a ton of experience learning offenses and dealing with adversity, as well as a support system for the career moves he’s had to make along the way. He met his wife, Morgan, when he was at Tennessee and she came with him to Pitt. Now they’re ready to make plans for their next home whenever his phone rings on draft day.
“It was special to have her as my closest support system this year. I know going forward, she’s ready for whatever happens. She has a sports management degree, so she understands how the business works. … It’s going to be very special. Everything I’ve been through and we’ve been through as a family these past five years to get to this point, to look all of them in the eye and share that moment with them is going to be extremely special and I’m sure very emotional, too.”