Derek Peagues
No. 4     
Defensive Back
Personal information
Date of birth: September 14, 1986
Place of birth: Batesville, Mississippi
Height: 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m) Weight: 193 lb (88 kg)
Career information
College: Mississippi State
Undrafted in 2009
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
*Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Career highlights and awards

Derek Alan Pegues (born September 14, 1986 in Batesville, Mississippi)[1] is an American football defensive back who is currently a free agent.


He is the cousin of former NFL Linebacker Dwayne Rudd. Pegues attended the same high school as Rudd, South Panola, which also produced current Pittsburgh Steelers starting Cornerback Deshea Townsend, Rudd's teammate in high school and college, at the University of Alabama.

High school careerEdit

2003 (Junior)Edit

Pegues enjoyed an outstanding prep career at South Panola High School in Batesville, Mississippi. After starting at Cornerback for the South Panola Tigers as a sophomore during the 2002 season, which saw the team go 14-1 with their only loss coming from Wayne County High School in the MHSAA Class 5A (for Mississippi's largest schools) Championship game, by a score of 14-21, Pegues was moved to Quarterback to replace departed starter Rickey Wright, who had signed a letter of intent to play football at Mississippi State. In his first season at the helm of the Tigers' offense as a junior (2003), Pegues guided the team to a 15-0 record, the Class 5A State Championship and a #9 national ranking from USA Today. South Panola routed previously unbeaten Oak Grove High School 33-14 in the 5A title game. Pegues received First-Team All-State recognition from the Clarion-Ledger newspaper along with teammates Jamarca Sanford and Peria Jerry, former South Panola Linebackers went on to standout careers with University of Mississippi's football team and now play in the NFL.[1]

2004 (Senior)Edit

Prior to his 2004 senior season, reported that Pegues could bench press an impressive 350 lb. and run a blazing 4.4-second 40-yard dash. These numbers affirmed his talent as indicated by his accomplishments on the field and helped him earn scholarship offers from such elite college football programs as Alabama, Michigan, Auburn, Tennessee and Louisiana State in addition to Mississippi State.[1]

Pegues again guided the Tigers to a perfect season (15-0) in 2004 with a second consecutive 5A State Championship (the school's 4th) and another top-ten finish in USA Today's "Super 25" high school football rankings (#7). He was instrumental in the Tigers' 39-21 State Championship Game victory over Ocean Springs High School as he rushed for 244 yards and 5 touchdowns. No player before or since has scored 5 touchdowns in the Class 5A Championship Game. Pegues was again named First-Team All-State by the Clarion-Ledger, along with teammates Travis Sanford, a Wide Receiver who signed with the Ole Miss Rebels, and John Jerry, currently a starting Offensive Guard at Ole Miss. He finished his high school career with a total of 4,104 rushing yards and 86 total touchdowns (passing, rushing, receiving, kick and punt returns and interception returns).[1]

All Star GamesEdit

2005 Army All-American GameEdit

Pegues was selected to play in the 5th annual U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas on January 15, 2005. The game pits the nation's best high school seniors against one another in an East-vs.-West matchup. Pegues, a member of the West squad, was one of three Mississippians who played in the game, the most ever in the same year (the other two were Jerrell Powe, a former Ole Miss signee, and Josh McNeil, currently the starting Center for the Tennessee Volunteers). Powe, McNeil and Pegues joined a star-studded West line-up, including names like Travis Beckum, Jamaal Charles, DeSean Jackson, Rey Maualuga, Ryan Perriloux, Ryan Reynolds, Mark Sanchez, Reggie Smith and Jonathan Stewart, helping the West claim the victory, 35-3.

Pegues' performance in the game was spectacular; he intercepted a pass, ran for a first down on a fake punt[1] and wowed viewers by shutting down two of the nation's best players in East Wide Receivers Fred Rouse and Patrick Turner, even though both players physically towered over his 5'10" frame at 6'3" and 6'5", respectively. His performance earned him "Defensive Player of the Game" honors.[2]

2005 Alabama-Mississippi GameEdit

Later that year, Pegues would guide another team to an All-Star game victory. Pegues played Running Back in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Football Classic, which annually pits the best players from each state against one another. The game was held at its annual location, Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Alabama, on June 4, 2005 (formerly a summer contest, it has since been moved to December).

Pegues picked up 15 carries for 106 yards (7.1 average) and a touchdown in a 21-18 Mississippi victory.[3] He was again joined by his fellow Mississippi teammates from the Army Game, Wayne County's Jerrell Powe and Collins High's Josh McNeil, as well as Brookhaven's Jimmy Johns, an Alabama signee who had beaten Pegues for the "Mr. Football" award annually bestowed upon the State's best player.[1]

College careerEdit

2005 (Freshman)Edit

Saw action in all 11 games as a reserve Cornerback on defense, where he accumulated 14 tackles, forced a fumble, broke up two passes and intercepted one. Was also a starting kick return specialist; ran back 28 kicks for and average of 20 yards, including a long of 51.

2006 (Sophomore)Edit

Started all 12 games at Cornerback on defense. Recorded 32 tackles, 1.5 tackles for a loss, five pass deflections and four interceptions. Also started all 12 games as a kick and punt return specialist. Returned 29 kickoffs an average of 23.7 yards, including a long of 61. Returned 25 punts for an average of 14 yards and one touchdown, including a long of 81. Was voted to the All-SEC Second Team by the SEC Coaches.

2007 (Junior)Edit

Started all 13 games at Free Safety on defense. Recorded 50 tackles, two tackles for a loss, recorved a fumble, deflected seven passes and intercepted five. His 20-yard interception return for a touchdown against Auburn was the difference in the game, which Mississippi State won for the first time since 2000. Also started all 13 games as a kick and punt return specialist. Returned 24 kickoffs an average of 22.7 yards, including a long of 51. Returned 27 punts for an average of 9.9 yards, including a long of 75, which resulted in a touchdown that tied the 2007 Egg Bowl in the fourth quarter, allowing MSU to win the game on a last-second field goal. Was voted to the All-SEC First Team by the Associated Press and Second Team by the SEC Coaches. He intercepted two passes on his way to an MVP performance in the 2007 AutoZone Liberty Bowl that helped his team win a defensive struggle over UCF by a score of 10-3.

2008 (Senior)Edit

As a two-time All-SEC performer (2006-2007), Pegues has been a crucial piece of State's defense, one of the nation's most improved units in 2007. He will be a Cornerback prospect for the 2009 NFL Draft.

NFL careerEdit

He actually shows a 4.69 forty yard dash according to the NFL Combine listing under cornerbacks


High schoolEdit

  • Selected to play in the 2005 Alabama-Mississippi All-Star football game, leading the Mississippi team to a 21-18 victory[1]
  • 2004 Gatorade Player of the Year in Mississippi[1]
  • Named one of three finalists for Mississippi's 2004 "Mr. Football" award, annually presented to the State's top player by the Clarion-Ledger, along with Ole Miss signee Jerrell Powe and current Alabama player Jimmy Johns, who won the award[1]
  • First-Team Class 5A All-State selection by the Mississippi Association of Coaches (MAC) in 2004[1]
  • Named to the Clarion-Ledger 2004 "Dandy Dozen" list, representing the paper's selection of the State's top 12 players[1]


  • 2007 SEC Weekly Awards
    • Week 3 Defensive Player of the Week[4]
    • Week 8 Outstanding Performer[5]
    • Week 13 Special Teams Player of the Week (13)[6]
  • 2006 All-SEC Second Team (Coaches,[1]


High SchoolEdit

Comp Att  % Yards TD INT
2003 (Jr.) 59 102 57.8 1,160 13 4
2004 (Sr.) - - - 637 6 -
Total - - - 1,797 19 -
Att Yards Avg TD
2003 (Jr.) 138 1,460 10.5 28
2004 (Sr.) - 1,659 - 26
Total - 3,119 - 54
Tckl BrkUp INT FR
2003 (Jr.) 45 15 7 2
2004 (Sr.) 51 - 5 -
Total 96 - 12 -


2005 (Fr.) 11/0 14 - - 1/0 2 1-3
2006 (So.) 12/12 32 1.5-6 - 0/0 5 4-95
2007 (Jr.) 13/13 50 2-3 - 0/1 7 5-120
Total 36/25 96 3.5-9 - 1/1 14 10-218
  • Kick Return[1]
2005 (Fr.) 11/11 28 559 20 0 51 (Auburn)
2006 (So.) 12/12 29 687 23.7 0 61 (Tulane)
2007 (Jr.) 13/13 24 544 22.7 0 51 (West Virginia)
Total 36/36 81 1790 22.1 0 61 (Tulane)
  • Punt Return[1]
2005 (Fr.) 11/0 1 2 2 0 2 (Houston)
2006 (So.) 12/12 25 350 14 1 81 (Jacksonville St.)
2007 (Jr.) 13/13 27 268 9.9 1 75 (Ole Miss)
Total 36/25 53 620 11.7 2 81 (Jacksonville St.)


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