The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: NFL Draft Quarterback Edition

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The NFL Draft begins in a few days and coming within the seven marathon rounds are top quarterback prospects. Within the marathon there are many fast runners, slow runners, and even guys that won’t finish. This is a look at six NFL Draft quarterbacks and how their future will shape playing with the big boys.

The Good

1. Joe Burrow

This guy is an impressive quarterback. He has incredible accuracy, leading college football in completion percentage last season. Also, Burrow has excellent feet, to the point where he can throw in and out of the pocket. He can even run for it if needed. Burrow wins games clearly, as the Heisman winner went, undefeated with his LSU Tigers, and won the National Championship, SEC Championship, and Peach Bowl. Finally, he has an incredible work ethic. On paper, it shows Burrow went from a 10-3 alright quarterback to a 15-0 Heisman winner in a year. He didn’t have any hype and went out there and dominated. We can even go back to him being a backup at Ohio State two years ago and barely getting any playtime. For the way he developed throughout his college career, is the way I see him moving in the NFL. His first season won’t be amazing but will keep growing in the NFL. He will continue to increase and adjust in the league and so much to say he will be holding Lombardi trophies. It will be a process for Burrow, not a sprint.

Nov 30, 2019; Baton Rouge, LA, USA; LSU Tigers quarterback Joe Burrow (9) gestures after a touchdown against the Texas A&M Aggies in the second quarter at Tiger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

2. Tua Tagovailoa

It is tough to say Tua will be good. He had a great start to his college career with his immaculate half and the winning throw in the National Championship. He would go on to head to the Championship again in 2018, only to lose, but he was a star. Tagovailoa came into the 2019 season with high hopes of a Heisman. Only the hopes were dashed as he injured his hip in November that ended his year. That time missed will hurt Tua. Going to the NFL without playing for almost a year isn’t easy. I believe Tua is a lot like Burrow and might be better when healthy. But Tua has had repeated injuries throughout his college career, and that will be crucial in the NFL with the big boys. I believe Tua isn’t a solid, durable quarterback and won’t last in the NFL to become a Super Bowl winner. I think he will bounce around the league a lot and will struggle to get to his maximum potential.

3. Justin Herbert

I love the way Herbert plays. He has an elite arm, great footwork, wins games, and is a big guy, standing at 6’6. On the other hand, the Oregon quarterback has looked sloppy at the end of games. Many times where he had end of game situations, like games against Auburn, he looked scared and very careless. But I believe that changed over the season. I wouldn’t put Herbert in the good if he couldn’t perform in pressure, because the NFL is pressure. If you go to his other loss, against Arizona State, Herbert was leading a late comeback. He would then lead drives to beat Washington State at the horn, held off Washington late, and held off the Badgers in the Rose Bowl. I think he can play under pressure, and most importantly, he wins games. Herbert was 12-2 against the 18th best strength of schedule(opposing win-percentage), and Herbert’s Ducks won the Pac-12 Championship. This guy could be a star one day, and I like his future chances for the Super Bowl.

NFL Draft Quarterbacks
Oct 11, 2019; Eugene, OR, USA; Oregon Ducks quarterback Justin Herbert (10) throws a pass against the Colorado Buffaloes during the second half at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The Bad

4. Jordan Love

I think Love is a very athletic guy and is a good football player. But he isn’t an NFL quarterback. He can throw some deep passes and make very athletic plays. With the way football is moving into an era of mobile quarterbacks, he fits the mold, but he isn’t a running quarterback. With the legs he has, he throws the ball a lot, as he threw the eighth-most passes in College Football. His throws are okay, as he only completed 60%, and keep in mind, he is going up against Mountain West Football teams. He also threw 17 picks in 2019, the most in college football. He is just an athletic guy, that can get by because he is playing a weak conference. I have nothing against Love as a person, and I think he will be able to get by in the NFL, and that is why he won’t be ugly, but I’ll put it this way. I wouldn’t take him.

NFL Draft Quarterbacks
Aug 30, 2019; Winston-Salem, NC, USA; Utah State Aggies quarterback Jordan Love (10) jogs off the field after a touchdown in the second quarter against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons at BB&T Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

5. Jake Fromm

This was his year. He had this year to prove himself, and he blew it. He was in the bottom 30 in the league in completion percentage, passing yards, and quarterback rating and barely made the cut for touchdowns thrown. This was a down year. He folded when the scouts opened their eyes. He was a quarterback flying under the radar because of an elite defense, and he finally got noticed when they were holding up trophies. Now, he did win games and had success as a Bulldog. But when we are talking about an NFL quarterback, his eye test isn’t spectacular. He doesn’t seem to have a determined look, he makes slow decisions, his arm and accuracy are good, but not NFL good, and he doesn’t make plays. I don’t look at Fromm and say, “He is gonna be a star one day.”

NFL Draft Quarterbacks
Oct 12, 2019; Athens, GA, USA; Georgia Bulldogs quarterback Jake Fromm (11) looks downfield to pass against the South Carolina Gamecocks during the first quarter at Sanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Ugly

6. Jacob Eason

This will summed up in one quote.

“He looks and feels like a traditional pocket passer. He doesn’t have great feel(in the pocket), doesn’t have great movement. He’s got dead feet. But he can rip throws…. His most impressive most impressive plays are when the pocket’s clean. When he’s protected, he can do it. But these types of guys are great when you get them in shorts, then you get them in the preseason and you say, ‘He’s regressing,’ Well, he’s not, it’s a different game…. It feels like he has a stiff game.”

From April 2020 edition of Sports Illustrated, Page. 73, quote from AFC Quarterbacks Coach

The game is bringing in more athletic guys on both sides of the ball, and because of that, he will have trouble under pressure.


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