Marcus Peters to be baptized by fire


Oct 18, 2014; Eugene, OR, USA; Washington Huskies defensive back Marcus Peters (21) warming up before the game against the Oregon Ducks at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Olmos-USA TODAY Sports

Remember when your parents would occasionally leave you in charge of things as a kid? Your dad would say some cliché phrase like “hold down the fort” and you’d be left responsible for the LIVES OF YOUR SIBLINGS for so many hours.

Of course none of you abused that responsibility and turned your homes into Mordor like I did. We kept things running with maybe a few hiccups here and there. With the announcement finally coming out last week of the official three-game suspension of Sean Smith, his new little brother will be left in charge for not just a few hours but the full three weeks.

The kid in charge would be Marcus Peters. Peters, who was Kansas City’s first round selection in the 2015 draft wasn’t initially going to be pressured to start right away with some depth they had at the position. With players like Sean Smith, Phillip Gaines, Jamell Fleming, Marcus Cooper, and recently-drafted Steven Nelson there was enough talent to ease Peters in as the season aged.

The Chiefs knew going into the draft that Smith was going to be facing some sort of suspension and the majority believed it was going to be a two-game suspension. However, with the NFL officially announcing that is indeed a three-game suspension that puts the Chiefs in an even worse predicament. In Week 3 Kansas City travels to the dreary city known as Green Bay where corners are shot to pieces by a quarterback named Aaron Rodgers. Needless to say, Kansas City could have gone without Smith being suspended another game.

Peters will be forced to play more snaps immediately but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Sure, he will most likely playing against two Hall of Fame quarterbacks in his first three weeks but that doesn’t mean that Peters will be intimidated either.

One of the primary reasons Kansas  City drafted Peters was because of his competitiveness and physicality. Peters, who’s measured at 6-foot-0 and 198 pounds is able to press and cover with all types of wide receivers. In college his range went from the big athletic types like Jaelen Strong and the quick and shifty ones in the past like Brandin Cooks.

Against both of these opponents he did an admirable job, he helped limit Strong to just three grabs for 55 yards despite being targeted eight times. Strong had averaged nine catches for 125 yards in four previous Pac-12 contests so his stats were down 56%. When Peters covered Cooks in man to man defense he held him under 50 yards on four catches. The video below shows the matchup and proof of Peters athletic ability.

When Kansas City general manager John Dorsey was interviewed shortly after drafting Peters on the reason for picking him he said “I think that he has probably got the best ball skills of any defensive back in this draft. I think he is incredibly physical in run support. I think he’s got an incredible feel for the game of football.”(per press conference on

That is a pretty convincing statement and if Peters is as good as advertised this pick was perfect for a Kansas City team that will be missing their top corner for almost the first quarter of the season.

Just like any rookie there’s a learning curve in making the transition to the NFL. Expecting Peters to play lights out against Manning and Rodgers is obviously not realistic. We can however be confident that he can make more good plays than bad to help his team get some wins.

That confidence was again shown in May when Peters was interviewed by Mitch Holthus on, saying “I’m here to become a shutdown corner and to help the team win, I’m going to cause some turnovers.”