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Marcus Mariota drops hint he may forgo 2015 NFL draft

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Marcus Mariota looks for an open receiver (©GettyImages)
Marcus Mariota looks for an open receiver (©GettyImages).

Marcus Mariota is expected to be one of the top prospects in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Problem is, the Oregon quarterback isn't sure yet if he wants to jump into the NFL waters.

Mariota, entering his junior season, has two seasons of college eligibility remaining and has said he enjoys college life.

He will surely be on of the top contenders to take home the Heisman Trophy this season, but told Chase Goodbread of NFL.com that he's in no hurry to rush to the NFL.

"We'll see, I'm not too sure," Mariota said. "The opportunity to leave obviously is there, but at the same time, college is fun and I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet."

Mariota has purchased a $5 million insurance policy to protect himself in case an injury derails his NFL plans. He also already has earned his degree from Oregon, so his academic load wouldn't be too demanding over the next year or two, depending on when he decides to head to the NFL.

Mariota honed his skills recently at the Manning Passing Academy in Louisiana with Peyton and Eli Manning.

Mariota, who works primarily out of a shotgun formation as a dual-threat at Oregon, said that the Mannings have been teaching lots of quarterbacking techniques from under the center.

"They've taught me a lot of under-center stuff, and making sure my base is my foundation," Mariota said. "They've helped me understand that I have to throw with my feet, and that will help me a lot with accuracy and different things like that. Hopefully I can apply that."

Mariota threw for 3,665 yards and 32 touchdowns last season for the Ducks, and ran for 715 yards and nine touchdowns. He nursed a knee injury for the last few games of the season after suffering a partial tear of his MCL against UCLA on October 26--another reason he said he wasn't ready to enter the NFL Draft last season.

He was first-team member of the All-Pac 12 team last season and the MVP of the Alamo Bowl after leading Oregon to a 30-7 win against Texas.

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