Pirates Profile: Aarion Maxey-Penton

By: Reed Becker
Pirates Writer
January 30, 2021

I recently had the opportunity to speak with defensive back Aarion Maxey-Penton, who is entering his first season with the Massachusetts Pirates. Maxey-Penton signed with the Pirates back in November 2020. He last played in The Spring League for the Generals in 2019. There is so much to learn about Maxey-Penton both on and off the field. Here is what stood out in my eyes.

Maxey-Penton grew up in St. Louis, Missouri and still resides there during the off-season, where he enjoys spending time with family and friends. Most importantly, Maxey-Penton tries to surround himself around good people. He credits his mother for always helping him stay busy and playing athletics growing up.

“She always told me to make sure I handle my business and make sure I do what I love so I can feel good about knowing my purpose,” Maxey-Penton told masspiratesfootball.com. “She also always kept me active when I was young by having me play three sports and made great decisions for me when I couldn’t for myself.”

Maxey-Penton attempting a layup as a high school basketball player.

Maxey-Penton started playing sports when he was six years old and first threw on the football pads in elementary school. He also played basketball and participated in track and field into his high school years. Playing basketball helped Maxey-Penton become a better football player and especially a better defensive back. It improved his hand-eye coordination, which helps him locate where the football is in the air.

Back when he ran track and field, Maxey-Penton was running against the fastest kids in St. Louis and he found it to be exciting. More importantly, track and field also contributed to Maxey-Penton becoming a better football player. It helped him build strength in his lower body, specifically in his hamstrings. It also taught him how to run the correct way because, in football, you need to change your running style in certain situations.

While growing up, Maxey-Penton was playing on average football teams, which meant he was always the best player on the team and had to carry the team to victories. He enjoyed being the best and thought it was fun. His family also liked watching him do well. As Maxey-Penton got older, he started to notice the competition was improving. This realization made him excited and motivated him to work harder than the players around him so he could match or surpass their level.

When it came time to choose where to play college football, Maxey-Penton chose to stay close to home by enrolling at the University of Missouri. Over his four years there, he played in a total of 51 games and accumulated 154 tackles, 10 interceptions and two forced fumbles. His most prestigious achievement was being named to the All-SEC First Team during his senior season in 2016. Maxey-Penton believes Missouri’s workout training program played a large part in his success.

Since his days at the University of Missouri, Maxey-Penton continues to focus on improving through the same type of training he learned while in school. This off-season, he has been in the gym and on practice fields, doing full-body workouts and specifically focusing on his legs, abdominal muscles, field expertise, footwork, ball drills and explosiveness. Maxey-Penton believes working on his field expertise will help him stay ready to play football with the Pirates.

He also loves to study film of wide receivers and defensive backs in the NFL. Maxey-Penton dreams of playing against NFL star receivers, including Davante Adams of the Green Bay Packers and Justin Jefferson of the Minnesota Vikings.

Maxey-Penton came close to cracking an NFL roster before, in 2017, when he was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Los Angeles Rams. While he wound up getting released in September of that year, he learned a valuable lesson during his time in Los Angeles.

“It was a wonderful experience, and I enjoyed every little bit of it. I learned how to take the job of an NFL player seriously from some of the best players that were there at the time.”

Maxey-Penton feels grateful for his next opportunity with the Pirates. He is hungry to make a great first impression at the professional football level and Pirates fans should be excited as well to watch Maxey-Penton and the rest of the Pirates defense take the field this season.

The Massachusetts Pirates are members of the Indoor Football League (IFL). The Pirates play all home games at the DCU Center located at 50 Foster St. Worcester, MA. 01608. For more information on the Massachusetts Pirates please call (508) 452-MASS (6277), email contact@masspiratesfootball.com or visit http://www.masspiratesfootball.com. Single-game tickets will be available soon at ticketmaster.com or the DCU Center Box Office. For season, half-season, luxury, or group ticket packages please call 508-452-MASS (6277). Follow the Pirates on Facebook via Facebook.com/MAPirates, Instagram @mass.pirates, and Twitter @mass_pirates. #GetHooked #AllAboard