Statistics: 39 total tackles, 3 interceptions, 0 sacks.
What He Did In 2012: As a redshirt freshman Peters played in every game, and by the sixth game he had taken over as the second starting cornerback opposite Desmond Trufant, meaning he had leapfrogged Tre Watson on the depth chart. The three interceptions, including one for a touchdown, were good, and Peters seemed to play well enough in pass coverage to keep his job through the end of the year, but with Trufant locking down his man on almost every snap, opposing quarterbacks spent a lot of time going at him, and they found success a little bit too often for me to view Peters as a set in stone starter next year.
What I Expect Of Him In 2013: Sometimes I fear that I am putting too much emphasis on the incoming Class of 2013 freshmen on next year’s depth chart, but in this case I do think that whether or not Peters is one of the two starters in 2013 depends on how many, if any, of the freshman corners are deemed ready to contribute, or even to start. Desmond Trufant is gone, meaning that in theory Peters and Tre Watson, two players that battled for the second slot last year, would both start, assuming they aren’t leapfrogged by freshmen. But Alabama transfer Travell Dixon will be eligible, and while it’s foolish to pencil in a transfer who has never started, I would be a bit surprised if he didn’t take one of the spots. Given the fact that the coaches continued to pick Peters over Watson for the 2nd slot last year, I think it’s likely Peters would then win out and fill the same role he did in 2012.
But that’s where those freshmen come in. If any of them, Jermaine Kelly being the most likely candidate, are seen by the coaches as starting caliber, Sark and Co. have made it clear that they don’t mind giving extended playing time to younger players. That could mean Peters being pushed down to 3rd corner, especially given the prospect of one of the tall ’13 recruits starting (all 6’1″ or taller) alongside the 6’1″ Travell Dixon. Still, Peters will almost definitely see the field a great deal whether he’s starting or not (Watson played a great number of snaps as the third corner after Peters leapfrogged him) and if he demonstrates in the spring and fall that he is one of the two best corners on the roster, he will start regardless of how much the coaches love the prospect of tall corners.