Scouting Reports 2014: Quarterbacks

Kevin C. Cox

This class of quarterbacks has more talent than it is getting credit for, with a number of players who might turn out to be very good starters 2-3 years down the road.

It's that time again!! Scouting reports are my one of my favorite pastimes, and have been for a very long time; since I was about 15 years old to be exact...

Scouting reports to me are so much better when you do it yourself rather going by what someone else says and/or a players stats. You learn so much more by taking the time to watch the tape and really study each position and the players that come with it. Remember the film NEVER lies.

We've now covered:

  1. Receivers
  2. Safeties
  3. Corner Backs
  4. Offensive Linemen
  5. Outside Linebackers

Next up, we have the quarterbacks. This quarterback class - like almost every other position - is very deep. Does it have that one player who's absolutely head and shoulders above the rest? No. Is there a sure fire elite prospect? Probably not. But it is loaded with talent. One thing that has changed over the last 10-15 years is the demand for players to play right away. This pressure plays a major role in the disappointment with quarterback classes like this one. Once upon of time, this class would receive a lot more hype than it has. But due to the demand for immediate production, and the belief that most of the quarterbacks in this class will need time to develop, the overall talent is undervalued. Because of this, I have decided to take the list of the top ten that I have done with the other positions, and moved the number up to 15 to show a little more respect for this group.

Derek Carr

Fresno State 6'2" 214lbs


GOOD

  • Above average athlete
  • Above average arm
  • Very experienced
  • Extremely productive
  • Very good deep ball
  • Tough
  • Leader
  • Intelligent
  • Protects the ball
  • Displayed good timing on throws
  • Underrated mobility

BAD

  • Does not read the blitz well
  • Locks on to targets
  • Has occasional mental lapse
  • Folds when pressured
  • Played in a QB friendly offense
  • Played a low level of competition

Player Comparison: Tony Romo

Like Romo, Carr will give you play after play of jaw dropping greatness. But then, out of nowhere you get that play that leaves you dumbfounded and confused. Carr displays good mobility and his athleticism is often overlooked and forgotten. Carr has shown the ability to put the ball in spots where few quarterbacks can. If put in the right system, he could really flourish.

Teddy Bridgewater

Louisville 6'2" 214lbs


GOOD

  • Phenomenal ball placement
  • Best game footage of any QB in draft
  • Very tough
  • Pro style offense
  • Very consistent
  • Deadly Accurate
  • Good athlete
  • Makes good pre-snap reads
  • Good timing on throws
  • Very smart
  • Protects the ball
  • Leader
  • Good mechanics
  • Plays confident
  • Shows up for the big games
  • Clutch

BAD

  • Struggles to keep weight
  • Very average arm strength
  • Will put too much air under some throws
  • Should use his mobility to avoid sacks

Player Comparison: Steve Young

I have heard a lot of Aaron Rogers comparisons, but I am not sure why? Rogers has one of the strongest arms in the NFL and is arguably a better athlete than Bridgewater. This isn't a shot a Teddy at all, but - to me - he's more similar to Steve Young than anyone else. Both players display deadly accuracy and good mobility. Young was never an extremely fast player, nor exceedingly elusive. He was a good athlete that understood when to run, as well as how to play quarterback. That's also the best way to describe Teddy Bridgewater. He plays a smart game of football, and uses his skill-set from the pocket to its max.

Blake Bortles

Central Florida 6'5" 232lbs


GOOD

  • Prototype size
  • Good athlete
  • Strong arm
  • Durable
  • Good pocket awareness
  • Can make all the throws
  • Throws extremely well on the run
  • Physical runner
  • Tough

BAD

  • Inconsistent accuracy
  • Lacks good timing on throws
  • Inconsistent mechanics
  • Does not read the coverage well
  • Risk taker
  • Stares down receivers
  • Forces passes

Player Comparison: Ryan Tannehill

Both Tannehill and Bortles have everything - physically - a coach looks for in their ideal quarterback. Both players are big, mobile, and have cannon arms. But both players also need a few years to develop; as well as being surrounded by good talent, good coaches, and need work on their mechanics, to reach their full potential. In other words both players are somewhat projects. Bortles has a lot of tools to work with, but there is also a lot of work to be done. But the potential that is there is very enticing, and can be hard to resist.

Johnny Manziel

Texas A&M 5'11" 207lbs


GOOD

  • Consistently great effort
  • Very competitive
  • Can improvise when there is nothing
  • Very tough
  • Played very good competition
  • Good athlete
  • Reacts very quickly
  • Vocal leader on sideline

BAD

  • Average at best arm strength
  • Unconventional offense
  • Late on throws
  • Big time risk taker
  • Too quick to scramble
  • Size
  • Decision making
  • Does not see the entire field
  • Terrible mechanics
  • Inconsistent accuracy
  • No pre-snap reads

Player Comparison: Jeff Garcia

Both Manziel and Garcia play a live wire, jitterbug, brand of football. The energy level is always high and the throws are rarely from the pocket. Manziel plays extremely fast, but at times it looks like he is moving too fast. He needs to slow the game down and see the field clearly. He has flashed the ability to put the ball right where it needs to be. His ability to wow you with creating something out of nothing is second to none.

(Side Note- the scouting report on Manziel does not include off field behavior. This is a judgement based purely off of the game tape)

A.J. McCarron

Alabama 6'3" 220lbs


GOOD

  • Has very good mechanics
  • Very confident
  • Protects the ball
  • Winners mentality
  • Transfers his weight as good as anyone
  • Better than advertised arm strength
  • Good Size
  • Durable
  • Pre-snap reads
  • Pro style offense
  • Leader
  • Consistent
  • High level of competition
  • Great timing
  • Throws the receiver open
  • Smart player

BAD

  • Is he a product of a good system
  • Never had to take over a game
  • Never really challenged
  • Always surrounded by the top talent
  • Unclear how he might handle adversity

Player Comparison: Matt Hasselbeck

McCarron has had the most successful career of any quarterback in this draft. But he doesn't wow you in any particular category. He's good at everything, but great at nothing. What might be hurting him the most is the talent that he was spoiled with at Alabama. Nevertheless, his mechanics and consistency are nothing to shrug at either. Like Hasselbeck, McCarron plays very smart and consistent. He has an arm strong enough to make all the throws, but should never try to force a pass. Like Hasselbeck, you're going to get a guy who leads his team the right way - with his actions and play - and gives you the same consistent play week in and week out.

Tahj Boyd

Clemson 6'1" 225lbs


GOOD

  • Tough
  • Leader
  • Very Productive
  • Lots of experience
  • Mobile
  • Strong
  • Very strong arm
  • Can make every single throw
  • Durable
  • Will extend plays
  • Can thread the needle

BAD

  • Very inconsistent accuracy
  • Decision making
  • Locks onto target
  • Offense was very simple
  • Forces throws

Player Comparison: Steve McNair

Tahj Boyd and Steve McNair have games which are nearly identical. Both players have up and down accuracy. Both are very strong and hard to bring down. Both can run the ball. And both can let it rip with the best of them. Tahj has to improve on his mechanics to help with his consistency. But his live arm, and flashes of legit accuracy make him an interesting prospect. He also might throw the best deep ball in the entire draft.

Aaron Murray

Georgia 6'1" 207


GOOD

  • Very experienced
  • High Football I.Q.
  • Very productive
  • Consistent
  • Good accuracy
  • Decent mobility
  • Tough
  • Pro style offense
  • Throws the receiver open
  • Reliable
  • Good timing on throws

BAD

  • Coming off of a torn ACL
  • Size
  • Average arm strength at best
  • Will lock onto target
  • Takes some risks

Player Comparison: Troy Aikman

While Aikman dominates Murray in the size department, they are very similar in other areas. Neither player will take a not so good receiver and make him look better. But both players level of play continues to rise as the game goes on. Like Aikman, if you put some halfway decent talent around Murray, he will produce. He knows how to get the ball to his play makers. He also sees the field very well, and displays excellent timing on throws.

My top 15 quarterbacks (the entire class) are:

  1. Teddy Bridgewater
  2. Derek Carr
  3. A.J. McCarron
  4. Blake Bortles
  5. Aaron Murray
  6. Zach Mettenberger
  7. Tahj Boyd
  8. Johnny Manziel
  9. Jimmy Garoppolo
  10. David Fales
  11. Brett Smith
  12. Bryn Renner
  13. Stephen Morris
  14. Tom Savage
  15. Logan Thomas

Most Pro Ready:

Teddy Bridgewater

Most Potential:

Blake Bortles

Most Explosive:

Johnny Manziel

Biggest Bust Potential:

Johnny Manziel

Sleeper:

I couldn't pick one sleeper for this group

  1. Bryn Renner
  2. Brett Smith
  3. Keith Wenning
  4. Keith Price

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