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Top QB prospects

Scouting reports on the five highest-ranked quarterbacks

By Nolan Nawrocki

April 3, 2008

More from PFW
" Scouting reports on the five highest-ranked wide receivers, 4/6/2008 8:37:55 AM
" Jaguars likely to cut Jones, 3/26/2008 5:17:16 PM
" Early entries for 2008 NFL draft, 3/10/2008 2:15:14 PM
" Friday notebook: Ryan gets his act together, 2/22/2008 10:16:24 PM
" Prospect of the day: Henne armed with starting-QB potential, 2/22/2008 4:14:28 AM
Related Topics
"  Chad Henne
"  Louisville
"  National Football League
"  Gatorade
"  Kentucky
"  Delaware
"  Michigan
"  Matt Ryan (Football)
"  Pittsburgh
"  The Ohio State University
shim.gif
poweredbyinform.gif

This is the first in a series of articles for this Web site, in which we'll present excerpts from the bible of the draft, our 2008 Draft Preview book, which is on now sale at the PFW store. Each of the remaining articles in the series will be posted daily, through April 10. Please note that the top five players at each position are listed in the order in which they were ranked in the pre-draft issue of our print edition, published March 31.

1. QB Matt Ryan

(6-4 3/4, 228, 4.94) Boston College

mattryan200.gif

 Matt Ryan

Notes: Also lettered in basketball and baseball as a prep. Redshirted in 2003. Started 1-of-4 games in 04, completing 35-of-71 passes (49.3 percent) for 350 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions. Started 5-of-10 games in 05 as a quarterback and played in all 12 on special teams. Connected on 121-195-1,514-8-5 (62.1) and rushed 37 times for 94 yards (2.5-yard average) and five touchdowns. Missed the game vs. Buffalo after breaking a bone in his left foot vs. Virginia Tech on Oct. 12, 2006, but started all 12 contests afterward, completing 263-427-2,942-15-10 (61.6) and rushing 51-128-4 (2.5) and leading the conference in passing yards (245.5 ypg). Had surgery immediately following the season. Started all 14 games in 07, amassing 388-654-4,507-31-19 (59.3). Set school single-season records and led the Atlantic Coast Conference in passing yards, completions and touchdowns, and set school career marks in completions and most 400-yard passing games. Earned ACC Player of the Year honors and won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award (nation s most outstanding senior quarterback) and the Manning Award (best quarterback in the United States). The two-time elected captain was 25-7 in his career as a starter. 

Positives: Terrific intangibles. Has a passion for the game and works very hard at his craft. Excellent football intelligence. Very accountable leader. Good decision-maker. Fiery on-field competitor. Has prototype size. Good flexibility. Very mentally and physically tough. Good foot quickness. Shows the ability to buy time in the pocket. Has good arm strength to make every throw. Can throw with touch and velocity and knows when to take pace off the ball. Shows the ability to move outside the pocket and improvise when protection breaks down. Can ­get rid of the ball quickly when called upon to do so. Has proven he will play through injuries. Can read through progressions, look off defensive backs and find open receivers. Makes throws to the field with consistency and accuracy. Plays with terrific poise and handles pressure very, very well. Takes few unnecessary sacks. Has an easygoing presence and relates well to teammates. Has stepped up in critical situations and made plays when needed. Extremely competitive and motivated to achieve. 

Negatives: Not a very elusive scrambler. Tries to do too much and will take some high-risk chances fitting the ball into tight coverage. Does not have a cannon arm to throw off his back foot and will hang some deep balls in the air. Too often does not see the short-hole plugger.

Summary: Has all the attributes desired in a franchise quarterback toughness, accuracy, intangibles, intelligence and escapability. Has the mental makeup to step into a starting lineup from Day One. Decision-making and ability to handle pressure crystallized as a senior and carried a team with very little talent around him. Should be able to do the same in a relatively short time in the pros and develop into a Pro Bowl passer. Is very worthy of the first overall pick.

2. QB Chad Henne

(6-2 7/8, 230, 4.94) Michigan

Notes: Pennsylvania Gatorade Player of the Year. Also lettered in basketball and track as a prep. Started all 12 games in 2004 and became the second true freshman in school history to start the season opener (the other was Rick Leach in 1975). Completed 240-of-399 pass attempts (60.2 percent) for 2,743 yards, 25 touchdowns and 12 interceptions, highlighted by a Rose Bowl-record-tying four touchdowns against Texas. Started all 12 games in 05, tossing 223-382-2,526-23-8 (58.4). Started all 13 games in 06, throwing 203-328-2,508-22-8 (61.9). Started all 10 games in which he played in 07, missing the Notre Dame and Penn State contests with a right knee sprain sustained vs. Oregon. Separated his right (throwing) shoulder against Illinois, took a cortisone shot and returned to rally the Wolverines to victory. Missed the Minnesota game but returned vs. Michigan State, when he sprained his ankle, and vs. Wisconsin and Ohio State after not practicing or being able to throw until he received a cortisone shot before game time. Totaled 162-278-1,938-17-9 (58.3). Finished as the school s career leader in completions (828), passing yards (9,715) and touchdown passes (87).

Positives: Has a strong build with a very good arm and an over-the-top release. Has moxie and commands respect in the huddle. Good on-field presence. Good intangibles. Has an unquestionable passion for the game and is very mentally and physically tough. Can throw the deep ball with accuracy and zip it. Very experienced.

Negatives: Is not a scrambler or very quick-footed to avoid the rush. Will press, try to do too much and force the ball into coverage. Does not have great field vision, will miss some open receivers and has a tendency to hang on to the ball too long. Not a great touch passer and struggles to take pace off the ball from close range. Varies his mechanics too much, and delivery is inconsistent. Needs a clean pocket to square his shoulders and throw the ball. Struggles to create plays when the pocket breaks down. Takes too many unnecessary sacks. Accuracy has been too inconsistent throughout his career and has been too streaky. Lost all four games vs. Ohio State.

Summary: An incredibly tough competitor who played most of his senior season through injury, Henne is a winner with the arm strength, intangibles and toughness desired in a starting quarterback. Was very durable throughout his career until his senior season, in which he was never able to develop a rhythm as he played through multiple injuries. Still needs to grow as a decision-maker, settle down and read defenses. A big, strong dropback passer, Henne has shown flashes of greatness and could be a terrific pro if he really works at it and learns to take what the defense gives him. Could take big strides with good coaching and would highly benefit if he were not pressed into action immediately.

3. QB Brian Brohm

(6-2 7/8, 230, 4.85) Louisville

Notes: Father, Oscar, and brothers, Greg and Jeff, also played football at Louisville. Jeff played two seasons for the San Francisco 49ers (1996-97) and currently serves as the QB coach and passing-game coordinator for the Cardinals. Greg is Louisville s director of football operations. Brian was named USA Today Offensive Player of the Year, Gatorade Player of the Year, Parade All-American and Kentucky s Mr. Football as a high school senior. Also won three state football titles, set the state record for completion percentage (65.2) and finished second in state history in career passing yards (10,579) and career touchdowns (119). Selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 49th round of the 2004 MLB draft and also lettered in basketball as a prep. As a true freshman in 04, backed up Carolina Panthers 05 fourth-round pick Stefan LeFors, appearing in 11-of-12 games and completing 66-of-98 attempts (67.3 percent) for 819 yards, six touchdowns and two interceptions. Started all 10 games he played in 05, missing the final two contests after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee against Syracuse. Posted 207-301-2,883-19-5 (68.8) and ranked second in the nation in passing efficiency en route to Big East Offensive Player of the Year honors (coaches). Returned from the knee injury in 06 to start all 11 games in which he played, missing starts against Kansas State and Middle Tennessee State after tearing ligaments in his right thumb against Miami (Fla.) and undergoing surgery. Is double-jointed and did not have a problem gripping the ball. Finished throwing 199-313-3,049-16-5 (63.6). Underwent surgery on his left (non-throwing) labrum in January of 07 but returned in time to participate in spring practice. Started all 12 games in the fall and finished with 308-473-4,024-30-12 (65.1), setting the school single-season record for touchdown passes.

Positives: Very experienced and has a good understanding of the game. Good football intelligence has played in multiple offenses and has shown he can handle checks and audibles. Very determined with great work habits. Stands in the pocket, keeps his shoulders squared and has shown he can read the field and work through progressions. Sees the field well and can hasten his delivery when needed. Can throw with touch and take pace off the ball. Plays with awareness. Very quietly competitive.

Negatives: Average athlete struggles to sidestep the rush and consequently has been injured frequently throughout his career. Arm strength is just OK has to really wind up to chuck it deep. Throws with little hip snap, power or velocity. Has short arms, tends to drop the ball and has a low release point that has resulted in too many batted balls. Inconsistent ball placement, especially when he is forced to move in the pocket. Is not a vocal, commanding or engaging leader.

Summary: Missed the Senior Bowl to rest a lower leg injury. Long-term durability remains a considerable issue given his lack of mobility. Individuality has been quashed in an overly demanding environment with his older brothers on staff, and he could be best entering an environment with low expectations. Could struggle to live up to the billing of a first-round pick but is the type of competitor who will bust his tail to prove wrong every team that passed him. Intelligence and experience will tempt a QB-needy team to consider him in the first round, and he could become a solid starter with good protection. His injury history, limited escapability and leadership style could make a team regret investing too much. Could be most successful if not pressed into action early.

4. QB Joe Flacco

(6-6 3/8, 236, 4.85) Delaware

Notes: Father, Stephen, played football and baseball at the University of Pennsylvania. Joe finished as the fourth-ranked career passing-yardage leader in South Jersey prep history and also lettered in baseball. Enrolled at Pittsburgh and redshirted in 2003. Played 3-of-12 games in 04 and completed 1-of-4 passes (25 percent) for 11 yards. Transferred to Delaware in 05 to get more playing time and sat out the season after not obtaining a scholarship release from Pittsburgh. Took over as the starter in all 11 games in 06, completing 264-417-2,783-18-10 (63.3) and rushing for five touchdowns. Earned Colonial Athletic Association co-Offensive Player of the Year honors after starting all 15 games in 07 and compiling 331-521-4,263-23-5 (63.5) and setting school single-season record for passing yards and career mark for completion percentage (63.4).

Positives: Looks the part with excellent height. Has a cannon arm and can really spin the ball with velocity, even off balance and from his back foot. Can laser the ball into small windows. Is smart and has improved as a decision-maker. 

Negatives: Has faced marginal competition. Too often locks on receivers and waits for them to uncover before throwing is not a confident, quick-triggered decision-maker. Average anticipation. Is stationary in the pocket and shows little athleticism to move his feet and avoid the rush. Can be flustered by pressure and be late to feel it. Marginal accuracy on the move. Too often closes his front foot when he steps into his throws, and his ball placement is erratic. Could need some adjustment time to taking snaps from under center. Not overly confident.

Summary: A big, traditional, rifle-armed pocket passer who could take some time to adapt to an NFL-style offense where he has to look off receivers and fit the ball into tight windows. Showed steady improvement as a senior and performed well at the Senior Bowl but is still a work in progress. Could develop into a good pro as long as he has time to throw.

5. QB Andre Woodson

(6-4, 229, 4.88) Kentucky

Notes: Grew up in a military family and consequently lived in Germany and Hawaii. Also lettered in basketball and track as a prep. Redshirted in 2003. Started 1-of-7 games in which he played in 04, completing 54-of-88 passes (61.4 percent) for 492 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Started all 11 games in 05, tossing 146-253-1,644-6-6 (57.7). Started all 13 games in 06 and completed 264-419-3,515-31-7 (63.0). Was voted Most Valuable Player by his teammates. Started all 13 games in 07, amassing 327-518-3,709-40-11 (63.1) and led the Southeastern Conference in completions, yards and touchdowns. Set the school and conference single-season records for touchdown passes. Set the school career mark for TD passes (79) and the conference career record for interception ratio (only two percent of his pass attempts were intercepted). Also set the NCAA record for consecutive completions without an interception (325).

Positives: Has terrific size. Can flick the ball downfield easily. Has good arm strength with a fluid stroke and delivery and spins a very tight spiral. Very good touch. Can zip it long distances on a rope. Improving decision-maker. Is very calm and collected and has shown the ability to keep his poise under pressure and rally his team from big deficits, as he showed he could do vs. Louisville and LSU.

Negatives: Has a tendency to bird-dog his primary target and is late to locate open receivers. Has a long, exaggerated release with a hitch at the top, where he drops the ball down to throw. Holds on to the ball too long and takes unneccesary sacks. Needs to do a better job securing the ball. Will force the ball into coverage. Requires space to throw and too often aims the ball. Average athletic ability and marginal foot quickness to buy time with his feet. Looks to the sideline for audibles and will take some time to grasp an offense. Takes time to build a rhythm. Not a vocal leader.

Summary: Will take time to absorb an offense and need time to be groomed. Long delivery will always allow defenders to prey on his passes. Began to make strides when the offense was overly simplified, but lack of escapability and long delivery will always handcuff an offense. Will require significant patience, and his long-term success will hinge on his ability to absorb a playbook.ng reports on the five highest-ranked quarterbacks

By Nolan Nawrocki

April 3, 2008

More from PFW
" Scouting reports on the five highest-ranked wide receivers, 4/6/2008 8:37:55 AM
" Jaguars likely to cut Jones, 3/26/2008 5:17:16 PM
" Early entries for 2008 NFL draft, 3/10/2008 2:15:14 PM
" Friday notebook: Ryan gets his act together, 2/22/2008 10:16:24 PM
" Prospect of the day: Henne armed with starting-QB potential, 2/22/2008 4:14:28 AM
Related Topics
"  Chad Henne
"  Louisville
"  National Football League
"  Gatorade
"  Kentucky
"  Delaware
"  Michigan
"  Matt Ryan (Football)
"  Pittsburgh
"  The Ohio State University
shim.gif
poweredbyinform.gif

This is the first in a series of articles for this Web site, in which we'll present excerpts from the bible of the draft, our 2008 Draft Preview book, which is on now sale at the PFW store. Each of the remaining articles in the series will be posted daily, through April 10. Please note that the top five players at each position are listed in the order in which they were ranked in the pre-draft issue of our print edition, published March 31.

1. QB Matt Ryan

(6-4 3/4, 228, 4.94) Boston College

mattryan200.gif

 Matt Ryan

Notes: Also lettered in basketball and baseball as a prep. Redshirted in 2003. Started 1-of-4 games in 04, completing 35-of-71 passes (49.3 percent) for 350 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions. Started 5-of-10 games in 05 as a quarterback and played in all 12 on special teams. Connected on 121-195-1,514-8-5 (62.1) and rushed 37 times for 94 yards (2.5-yard average) and five touchdowns. Missed the game vs. Buffalo after breaking a bone in his left foot vs. Virginia Tech on Oct. 12, 2006, but started all 12 contests afterward, completing 263-427-2,942-15-10 (61.6) and rushing 51-128-4 (2.5) and leading the conference in passing yards (245.5 ypg). Had surgery immediately following the season. Started all 14 games in 07, amassing 388-654-4,507-31-19 (59.3). Set school single-season records and led the Atlantic Coast Conference in passing yards, completions and touchdowns, and set school career marks in completions and most 400-yard passing games. Earned ACC Player of the Year honors and won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award (nation s most outstanding senior quarterback) and the Manning Award (best quarterback in the United States). The two-time elected captain was 25-7 in his career as a starter. 

Positives: Terrific intangibles. Has a passion for the game and works very hard at his craft. Excellent football intelligence. Very accountable leader. Good decision-maker. Fiery on-field competitor. Has prototype size. Good flexibility. Very mentally and physically tough. Good foot quickness. Shows the ability to buy time in the pocket. Has good arm strength to make every throw. Can throw with touch and velocity and knows when to take pace off the ball. Shows the ability to move outside the pocket and improvise when protection breaks down. Can ­get rid of the ball quickly when called upon to do so. Has proven he will play through injuries. Can read through progressions, look off defensive backs and find open receivers. Makes throws to the field with consistency and accuracy. Plays with terrific poise and handles pressure very, very well. Takes few unnecessary sacks. Has an easygoing presence and relates well to teammates. Has stepped up in critical situations and made plays when needed. Extremely competitive and motivated to achieve. 

Negatives: Not a very elusive scrambler. Tries to do too much and will take some high-risk chances fitting the ball into tight coverage. Does not have a cannon arm to throw off his back foot and will hang some deep balls in the air. Too often does not see the short-hole plugger.

Summary: Has all the attributes desired in a franchise quarterback toughness, accuracy, intangibles, intelligence and escapability. Has the mental makeup to step into a starting lineup from Day One. Decision-making and ability to handle pressure crystallized as a senior and carried a team with very little talent around him. Should be able to do the same in a relatively short time in the pros and develop into a Pro Bowl passer. Is very worthy of the first overall pick.

2. QB Chad Henne

(6-2 7/8, 230, 4.94) Michigan

Notes: Pennsylvania Gatorade Player of the Year. Also lettered in basketball and track as a prep. Started all 12 games in 2004 and became the second true freshman in school history to start the season opener (the other was Rick Leach in 1975). Completed 240-of-399 pass attempts (60.2 percent) for 2,743 yards, 25 touchdowns and 12 interceptions, highlighted by a Rose Bowl-record-tying four touchdowns against Texas. Started all 12 games in 05, tossing 223-382-2,526-23-8 (58.4). Started all 13 games in 06, throwing 203-328-2,508-22-8 (61.9). Started all 10 games in which he played in 07, missing the Notre Dame and Penn State contests with a right knee sprain sustained vs. Oregon. Separated his right (throwing) shoulder against Illinois, took a cortisone shot and returned to rally the Wolverines to victory. Missed the Minnesota game but returned vs. Michigan State, when he sprained his ankle, and vs. Wisconsin and Ohio State after not practicing or being able to throw until he received a cortisone shot before game time. Totaled 162-278-1,938-17-9 (58.3). Finished as the school s career leader in completions (828), passing yards (9,715) and touchdown passes (87).

Positives: Has a strong build with a very good arm and an over-the-top release. Has moxie and commands respect in the huddle. Good on-field presence. Good intangibles. Has an unquestionable passion for the game and is very mentally and physically tough. Can throw the deep ball with accuracy and zip it. Very experienced.

Negatives: Is not a scrambler or very quick-footed to avoid the rush. Will press, try to do too much and force the ball into coverage. Does not have great field vision, will miss some open receivers and has a tendency to hang on to the ball too long. Not a great touch passer and struggles to take pace off the ball from close range. Varies his mechanics too much, and delivery is inconsistent. Needs a clean pocket to square his shoulders and throw the ball. Struggles to create plays when the pocket breaks down. Takes too many unnecessary sacks. Accuracy has been too inconsistent throughout his career and has been too streaky. Lost all four games vs. Ohio State.

Summary: An incredibly tough competitor who played most of his senior season through injury, Henne is a winner with the arm strength, intangibles and toughness desired in a starting quarterback. Was very durable throughout his career until his senior season, in which he was never able to develop a rhythm as he played through multiple injuries. Still needs to grow as a decision-maker, settle down and read defenses. A big, strong dropback passer, Henne has shown flashes of greatness and could be a terrific pro if he really works at it and learns to take what the defense gives him. Could take big strides with good coaching and would highly benefit if he were not pressed into action immediately.

3. QB Brian Brohm

(6-2 7/8, 230, 4.85) Louisville

Notes: Father, Oscar, and brothers, Greg and Jeff, also played football at Louisville. Jeff played two seasons for the San Francisco 49ers (1996-97) and currently serves as the QB coach and passing-game coordinator for the Cardinals. Greg is Louisville s director of football operations. Brian was named USA Today Offensive Player of the Year, Gatorade Player of the Year, Parade All-American and Kentucky s Mr. Football as a high school senior. Also won three state football titles, set the state record for completion percentage (65.2) and finished second in state history in career passing yards (10,579) and career touchdowns (119). Selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 49th round of the 2004 MLB draft and also lettered in basketball as a prep. As a true freshman in 04, backed up Carolina Panthers 05 fourth-round pick Stefan LeFors, appearing in 11-of-12 games and completing 66-of-98 attempts (67.3 percent) for 819 yards, six touchdowns and two interceptions. Started all 10 games he played in 05, missing the final two contests after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee against Syracuse. Posted 207-301-2,883-19-5 (68.8) and ranked second in the nation in passing efficiency en route to Big East Offensive Player of the Year honors (coaches). Returned from the knee injury in 06 to start all 11 games in which he played, missing starts against Kansas State and Middle Tennessee State after tearing ligaments in his right thumb against Miami (Fla.) and undergoing surgery. Is double-jointed and did not have a problem gripping the ball. Finished throwing 199-313-3,049-16-5 (63.6). Underwent surgery on his left (non-throwing) labrum in January of 07 but returned in time to participate in spring practice. Started all 12 games in the fall and finished with 308-473-4,024-30-12 (65.1), setting the school single-season record for touchdown passes.

Positives: Very experienced and has a good understanding of the game. Good football intelligence has played in multiple offenses and has shown he can handle checks and audibles. Very determined with great work habits. Stands in the pocket, keeps his shoulders squared and has shown he can read the field and work through progressions. Sees the field well and can hasten his delivery when needed. Can throw with touch and take pace off the ball. Plays with awareness. Very quietly competitive.

Negatives: Average athlete struggles to sidestep the rush and consequently has been injured frequently throughout his career. Arm strength is just OK has to really wind up to chuck it deep. Throws with little hip snap, power or velocity. Has short arms, tends to drop the ball and has a low release point that has resulted in too many batted balls. Inconsistent ball placement, especially when he is forced to move in the pocket. Is not a vocal, commanding or engaging leader.

Summary: Missed the Senior Bowl to rest a lower leg injury. Long-term durability remains a considerable issue given his lack of mobility. Individuality has been quashed in an overly demanding environment with his older brothers on staff, and he could be best entering an environment with low expectations. Could struggle to live up to the billing of a first-round pick but is the type of competitor who will bust his tail to prove wrong every team that passed him. Intelligence and experience will tempt a QB-needy team to consider him in the first round, and he could become a solid starter with good protection. His injury history, limited escapability and leadership style could make a team regret investing too much. Could be most successful if not pressed into action early.

4. QB Joe Flacco

(6-6 3/8, 236, 4.85) Delaware

Notes: Father, Stephen, played football and baseball at the University of Pennsylvania. Joe finished as the fourth-ranked career passing-yardage leader in South Jersey prep history and also lettered in baseball. Enrolled at Pittsburgh and redshirted in 2003. Played 3-of-12 games in 04 and completed 1-of-4 passes (25 percent) for 11 yards. Transferred to Delaware in 05 to get more playing time and sat out the season after not obtaining a scholarship release from Pittsburgh. Took over as the starter in all 11 games in 06, completing 264-417-2,783-18-10 (63.3) and rushing for five touchdowns. Earned Colonial Athletic Association co-Offensive Player of the Year honors after starting all 15 games in 07 and compiling 331-521-4,263-23-5 (63.5) and setting school single-season record for passing yards and career mark for completion percentage (63.4).

Positives: Looks the part with excellent height. Has a cannon arm and can really spin the ball with velocity, even off balance and from his back foot. Can laser the ball into small windows. Is smart and has improved as a decision-maker. 

Negatives: Has faced marginal competition. Too often locks on receivers and waits for them to uncover before throwing is not a confident, quick-triggered decision-maker. Average anticipation. Is stationary in the pocket and shows little athleticism to move his feet and avoid the rush. Can be flustered by pressure and be late to feel it. Marginal accuracy on the move. Too often closes his front foot when he steps into his throws, and his ball placement is erratic. Could need some adjustment time to taking snaps from under center. Not overly confident.

Summary: A big, traditional, rifle-armed pocket passer who could take some time to adapt to an NFL-style offense where he has to look off receivers and fit the ball into tight windows. Showed steady improvement as a senior and performed well at the Senior Bowl but is still a work in progress. Could develop into a good pro as long as he has time to throw.

5. QB Andre Woodson

(6-4, 229, 4.88) Kentucky

Notes: Grew up in a military family and consequently lived in Germany and Hawaii. Also lettered in basketball and track as a prep. Redshirted in 2003. Started 1-of-7 games in which he played in 04, completing 54-of-88 passes (61.4 percent) for 492 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Started all 11 games in 05, tossing 146-253-1,644-6-6 (57.7). Started all 13 games in 06 and completed 264-419-3,515-31-7 (63.0). Was voted Most Valuable Player by his teammates. Started all 13 games in 07, amassing 327-518-3,709-40-11 (63.1) and led the Southeastern Conference in completions, yards and touchdowns. Set the school and conference single-season records for touchdown passes. Set the school career mark for TD passes (79) and the conference career record for interception ratio (only two percent of his pass attempts were intercepted). Also set the NCAA record for consecutive completions without an interception (325).

Positives: Has terrific size. Can flick the ball downfield easily. Has good arm strength with a fluid stroke and delivery and spins a very tight spiral. Very good touch. Can zip it long distances on a rope. Improving decision-maker. Is very calm and collected and has shown the ability to keep his poise under pressure and rally his team from big deficits, as he showed he could do vs. Louisville and LSU.

Negatives: Has a tendency to bird-dog his primary target and is late to locate open receivers. Has a long, exaggerated release with a hitch at the top, where he drops the ball down to throw. Holds on to the ball too long and takes unneccesary sacks. Needs to do a better job securing the ball. Will force the ball into coverage. Requires space to throw and too often aims the ball. Average athletic ability and marginal foot quickness to buy time with his feet. Looks to the sideline for audibles and will take some time to grasp an offense. Takes time to build a rhythm. Not a vocal leader.

Summary: Will take time to absorb an offense and need time to be groomed. Long delivery will always allow defenders to prey on his passes. Began to make strides when the offense was overly simplified, but lack of escapability and long delivery will always handcuff an offense. Will require significant patience, and his long-term success will hinge on his ability to absorb a playbook.

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