Behind the scenes of “NFL Films Presents,” with Jay Leno and Patrick Peterson

Arizona Cardinals, Featured, Shannon Furman

By Shannon Furman, Producer

Editor’s Note: Tune in TONIGHT Oct 10 @ 7PM for “NFL Films Presents: Pursuing Your Passion” on Fox Sports 1.

It’s hard for me to believe that this is only Patrick Peterson’s fourth year in the NFL. I’ve gotten to know the Arizona Cardinals star play maker pretty well over this time. Between filming him working out in the off season, studying game tape, and mentoring young players I have learned that he is one of the hardest working and most dedicated players in the NFL.

When Peterson loves something he never does it halfway. During his rookie season he told me he had taken up golf. Within that first year he was already shooting in the 80’s. For someone like me who has been playing golf their whole life I was envious. I think I’ve shot in the 80’s maybe 3 times, and I’m always in shock when I have a day like that. I haven’t asked Pat lately but I would be willing to bet he’s close to a scratch golfer these days.

In the summer of 2012 we shot a workout with Patrick, his father, and former LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson. When the men arrived at the local park I immediately took notice of the car Peterson was driving. It was a ‘72 Chevelle. I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t ask him why that car. He told me he always loved cars. He wanted his own collection, and when football is over he wants to restore cars. That was the day I began planning the feature that will air tonight on “NFL Films Presents” on Fox Sports 1.

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As I continued to do more shoots with Peterson over the next eighteen months, his car collection continued to grow. I mentioned this to one of the audio guys I work with Willie O’Bryan, and he said “you should get him together with Jay Leno.” I replied, “Great idea Willie. Can you make that happen?” I was 99% joking at the time, but Willie informed me that actually he might be able to help out. O’Bryan shoots an episode of “My Classic Car” with Dennis Gage and Jay Leno every year. They’ve been doing this for approximately 15 years. Willie made a few calls, and the next thing I knew the feature was in motion.

We first got Dennis Gage and Patrick Peterson together in Arizona to check out Peterson’s collection. The next step was getting Patrick to Burbank to check out Jay Leno’s garage. In this feature you will see three men who are completely different bond over one passion. I was amazed at the chemistry they all had together!


Shannon Furman is in her 11th season at NFL Films, where her work as a producer and director has included “Brandon Marshall: A Football Life” ; NFL Films Presents features on yoga and Football & Nigeria ; “Hey Rookie: Welcome to the NFL” ; HBO’s “Hard Knocks” and “NFL Turning Point.”  She has won 3 Emmy awards.

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