LSU Football: Why 2014 Will Be Avery Peterson's Breakout Season

Jake Martin@JakeMartinSECCorrespondent IIIFebruary 20, 2014

247 Sports

With a deep, meticulous voice resembling the Mandarin in Ironman 3, Avery Peterson has to be in LSU's weight room saying, "they'll never see me coming."

After all, who would? With Malachi Dupre, Trey Quinn and Travin Dural expecting to be the centerpiece of the wide receiver corps, there's hardly any thought left for those like John Diarse and Peterson.

And Diarse, who was redshirted last season and received the Newcomer Most Improved Award following last year's spring game, is currently in a better position than Peterson after Peterson broke his ankle prior to the commencement of the season.

So here's to the forgotten man, Mr. Peterson.

While he might be flying under the radar currently, he certainly joined the Tigers with a lot of hype. That's because Peterson is the younger brother of former LSU superstar Patrick Peterson.

But every player is his own man. So what makes the younger Peterson eligible for a breakout that blindsides the LSU fanbase?

Take a look for yourself.

Besides blood ties, Peterson's height (6'2"), speed (4.4) and overall athletic prowess (I think the video speaks for itself) certainly make him a contender for one of those coveted wide receiver positions next season.

Before Peterson's unfortunate derailment at the end of the summer last year, Les Miles raved about the prospect's abilities to us on occasions.

In fact, when Peterson was injured, Miles noted in one of those press conferences that Peterson was in position to contend as a freshman before the injury. Miles said, per's Jim Kleinpeter, that "football is a wonderful game but injury can cost you, cost up time, ability and an opportunity you really worked so hard to accomplish. To put yourself in position, 'Now I'm ready' and injury can take that time from you."

No coach can articulate a quote quite like Miles. Nonetheless, Peterson's story was indeed a sad one, but luckily for Peterson, that's far from the end of his college football narrative.

Not to say Peterson's injury was a blessing in disguise, but maybe it was. His stalled development has lit a fire within himself. Don't believe me? Just watch Peterson's Twitter feed. He floods his feed with tweets like this daily:

I will not take a step back I WILL GET BETTER EVERYDAY!!!

— Avery Johnson (@AveryAj2) February 19, 2014 

Yeah, I'd say that young man is hungry to contribute.

With Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham changing playing surfaces this offseason, wide receiver positions have opened. Dural will almost certainly attain one of those positions, as he's bringing back the most experience among his peers. Dural caught seven passes for 145 receiving yards and two touchdowns last season.

The remaining slots are wide open. Dupre could instantly contend, but he's a diamond that offensive coordinator Cam Cameron will spend an enormous amount of time squeezing.

His raw technique needs some fine tuning and though fellow incoming freshman Quinn has blazing speed and admirable technique at his age, Peterson is in a better position than both incoming prospects, having possessed both coaching from Cameron and eye-catching athletic ability.

The competition at wide receiver this spring and fall will be fierce at LSU, no doubt.

Dupre and Quinn will grab early headlines, and Dural will steal space in the paper with the overused "experienced" tagline.

But don't be surprised to see some sleeper storylines surrounding Diarse, Kevin Spears and darkhorse Peterson.

Here's to hoping the apple doesn't fall far from the tree in the Peterson household.


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