By Chadd Cripe
© 2010 Idaho Statesman
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Boise State wide receiver Austin Pettis is expected to play in the Fiesta Bowl, coach Chris Petersen said after Saturday’s practice.
Pettis still has been limited in practice as he recovers from a fractured ankle, Petersen said.
“He’s still working through it,” Petersen said. “But he’ll be a factor somehow, some way.”
One area where Pettis might be able to help is in the red zone. He has grabbed most of his 14 touchdown catches on short passes. His size might be more important than any loss of speed in that part of the field.
Petersen said slot receiver Tyler Shoemaker is “probably further along than Austin.” Shoemaker missed the final three regular-season games with a hernia.
“He’ll be a factor for us in there as well,” Petersen said.
Petersen wouldn’t provide any details on how the linebacker rotation will work with Daron Mackey out and Derrell Acrey returning.
The swingman is freshman J.C. Percy, who played middle linebacker in the regular-season finale but spent most of the year at weak-side linebacker. Percy is second on the team in tackles.
The Broncos usually play at least four linebackers. They have five available — Acrey, Percy, Hunter White, Aaron Tevis and Tommy Smith.
“They’re all going to kind of play,” Petersen said. “We’re going to move them around a little bit.”
Many of the former Broncos in the NFL wanted to attend Monday’s game, Petersen said, but it looks like most will be unable to make it. He expects former wide receiver Legedu Naanee, who plays for the San Diego Chargers, to be there. Naanee played on the 2007 Fiesta Bowl team.