Jameis Winston aspires to play like Peyton Manning, others

Florida State quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston told NFL AM Monday that he patterns the mental approach of his game after three Super Bowl champion quarterbacks.

For the redshirt freshman on his way to the BCS National Championship game, the mental aspect for a quarterback is where games are won and lost.

"I draw a lot of comparisons with Cam Newton and E.J. Manuel. But for the mental part, I like to view myself as Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, and those guys," Winston said. "Because they're so ahead of everyone else when it comes to that part of the game."

Manuel is a former teammate of Winston's at Florida State.

Saturday night, Winston became just the second freshman ever to win the Heisman, just a year after the first in Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel. But like Manziel, Winston had a redshirt season at FSU in 2012 to help ready himself for a starting role, and that was a key element in his development.

"Coming from high school, when you sit that first year, if you love football, have respect for the game. You want to come back that next year, because usually (you've been a) superstar your whole life," Winston said. "You don't sit out for football. But when you sit out, you get to see things, and it makes you want to play more."

Winston has thrown 38 touchdown passes to just 10 interceptions in 13 games for the Seminoles entering the national title clash against Auburn. He's done it largely on the strength of a trait common to Manning, Brady and Brees: an uncanny ability to read defenses and react well to blitzes.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.