|LM Otero/Associated Press|
|Baylor's Bryce Petty returns as one of the top quarterbacks in college football.|
THIBODAUX, La. -- With dozens of college quarterbacks on hand to assist more than 1,000 young campers at the Manning Passing Academy, each was designated to teach a different skill at various drill stations Friday morning.
Baylor's Bryce Petty, one of the nation's top quarterback prospects, got a kick out of his assignment: Teaching dropbacks from under center. It's not exactly his specialty in the Bears' shotgun offense.
2014 Manning Passing AcademyTake a look at the action from Peyton Manning's Passing Academy, where Archie Manning and Jameis Winston were on hand.
"It's kind of funny that I got picked for that one, but I was just rolling with it, trying to do the best I could," Petty said. "Yeah, that was kind of ironic."
Being prepared to make the transition from a shotgun scheme to the under-center offenses that populate the NFL won't be such a joking matter next spring when Petty is preparing for the 2015 NFL Draft. Petty is well aware scouts will scrutinize his skills in a variety of ways, and his potential to perform from under center will be among their primary concerns. NFL Media analyst Bucky Brooks has other concerns about Petty. Petty didn't even play under center in high school, much less at Baylor, but it's not as though he's totally unfamiliar with traditional dropback fundamentals.
"It's part of the game. Once I get through my draft prep, I have no doubt I'll be ready to go," Petty said. "It's something you've got to work on, but there's no doubt in my mind that I'll be able to handle that when the time comes. ... It's just different. That's an elementary way of putting it, but when you're sitting back there in the shotgun, (the defense) isn't on you as fast. There are some different elements, you've got to make decisions quicker."
Petty made decisions quickly enough last season to blister Big 12 defenses from the shotgun, piling up 32 touchdowns to just three interceptions. Already the holder of eight school records after only one season as a starter, Petty said the temptation to leave Baylor early for this year's draft wasn't as strong as people suspect.
"I didn't even think about it. I knew I was coming back. I didn't wait four years to play one and leave," he said.
The Big 12 wasn't that lucky.
Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.