A round with Patrick Peterson: Golf with Michael Jordan, Passionfruit Truly and an idea for The Match – usatoday.com

Posted: December 11, 2020 at 4:55 am


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Over the last decade Patrick Peterson has made a name for himself as one of the best defenders in the NFL.

Since he was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in 2011, Peterson has been selected to eight Pro Bowls, is a three-time First-team All-Pro and was featured on the NFLs All-Decade Team of the 2010s.

The 30-year-old picked up golf around the same time as joining the league, and now boasts a 4 handicap when hes grinding daily in the offseason.

During the season, me and (teammate Larry Fitzgerald), our nicknames are the Trunk Slammers because all we do is get our clubs, slam our trunks and go straight to the tee box because we dont have as much time to work on our game because were focused on our profession.

Below is the first installment in Golfweeks new series, where well take you on a virtual round with your favorite celebrity golfers.

Celebrity handicaps: Just how good are these athletes and entertainers?

Golfweek: I read you became interested in golf during the 2011 NFL lockout, is that right? Whats your history and story with the game?

Patrick Peterson: I was fortunate enough to have cousins and relatives that played in the league and they told me in the offseason, thats when most guys get in trouble. You want to find something that gives you something competitive to do when you have all this downtime My first club I ever hit was a 7-iron because 7s my favorite number, and I flushed it and was like, Man this game is that easy? It cant be that easy. Ill never forget after that I went and literally started buying clubs. Thats how I got into the game.

GW: Youve become friends with Michael Jordan. Any good golf stories with MJ?

PP: I went down to play with him at Floridian and I had one of my buddies with me and hed never met Jordan. As you know, Jordan likes to gamble or at least put something on the line when hes playing golf. My buddy was like, Man were playing with MJ, and I said, Man stop acting goddamn star struck act like youve been here before. So now hes all shook and nervous as hell. We get up to the tee box and Jordans handling everything, separating groups, and he looks over at my friend and says Hey, whats your name? You want to play for something? And my friend says Man I aint got your type of money, and Jordan went So tell me this, what would make it hurt? My friend goes, What do you mean make it hurt? Ive got like $2 in my pocket. Jordan said, Bet it.

PP: Now, my first time playing with him was at his event. (Denise L. White, founder EAG Sports Management) knew how much I loved golf, I dont know how the hell she made it happen but I was in the final group. I was like, Woah, Im with MJ? Youve gotta be shing me. I ended up playing with him, but the crazy thing about it was I was playing against him. Me and Ken Griffey Jr., were on a team vs. him and Dwight Freeney. So heres the thing on the tee box, him and Dwight Freeney are on teams, but hes telling Dwight, I like P-Twice over you right now. I was like, Thats your teammate!

GW: Athletes like Stephen Curry and Tony Romo have played in professional golf events. Do you have any interest in that, maybe after football?

PP: I would love to because Id have the time to hone in on my game. Those guys are playing golf and practicing every single day. If I felt my game has reached that point or I feel like Im playing good enough golf, no doubt Id love to try that. Denise always teases me saying thatll be my second career anyway.

GW: On the course do you drive for show or putt for dough?

PP: Putt for dough.

GW: Your nickname, PP, is obviously for your initials. On the course is it perfect putter or poor putter?

PP: (laughs) Lets go with perfect putter.

GW: Youre in the fairway on a borderline-reachable par 5. Go for the green and risk trouble or lay up?

PP: For the most part Im going for it.

GW: Whats the go-to drink at the 19th hole?

PP: Casa Azul on the rocks. As far as drinks on the course, I like to drink Trulys. The Passionfruits a banger for me.

GW: Whats your favorite club in the bag?

PP: My 60. I feel I can get up-and-down from anywhere around the greens.

GW: I feel like everyone has a go-to line on the golf course to mess with your friends. Whats yours?

PP: If a match is getting close, right before they hit Ill go, Make sure you dont hook it. It always gets in one of my guys heads. Itll come down to 18 and Ill press him and hell say, Im not gonna hook it.

GW: The best golfer on the Arizona Cardinals is ________

PP: (Punter) Andy Lee. Andy can play, hes a legit scratch. Ive played with him a bunch of times and he can strike the ball.

GW: Are you better than future Hall of Fame teammate Larry Fitzgerald?

PP: Oh yeah Im better than Fitz. Im the second best golfer on the team.

GW: Whats your dream golf foursome?

PP: I know (Kobe Bryant) didnt play golf but Kobe. Barack Obama. And probably Stephen A. Smith. Id like to hear Stephen A. on the course and I wanna see him hit some bad shots.

GW: Youd be in his ear all 18 holes, wouldnt you?

PP: No doubt about it (laughing).

GW: Do you talk more trash on the golf course or on the football field?

PP: Definitely on the golf course because its not worth it in football. You have to see whats going on with personnel and you might not see him again. In golf, youre with that person for four hours, there aint no running away!

GW: Word on the street is you have an idea for the next made-for-TV golf event along the lines of The Match?

PP: What they need to do is, take whatever pro golfers you want and make them captains. Put together a pool full of athletes and let them pick and have a Ryder Cup-style match. Six holes would be alternate shot, next six are a scramble, final six are singles. I dont care when Im getting picked, as long as Im on the squad.

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A round with Patrick Peterson: Golf with Michael Jordan, Passionfruit Truly and an idea for The Match - usatoday.com

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December 11th, 2020 at 4:55 am

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