NFL 2011 - Pre-Draft Thread
Today was the Senior Bowl. Just finished watching the game for the first time. For this first viewing, I focused entirely on the quarterbacks. Here's an abridged version of my notes for each QB:
* Looks like a pro top to bottom - holds ball high, great mechanics and footwork. Definite NFL arm.
* 100% healthy now and looks like totally different guy from the banged-up senior season player
* On-target on timing routes and fast getting ball out of hand
* West coast QB? Mayock thinks do. Definitely excelled with short & medium timing routes
* (Drive 1): Bad deep underthrow on 1st play - said in interview later that ball was slick and didn't come out cleanly
* (Drive 1): Nimble feet escaping rush and scrambling for 1st down, powerful sneak later in drive for another 1st down
* (Drive 2): On-time throw to post-corner but WR ran route too shallow and cut himself off
* (Drive 2): On-time throw on deep hitch, delivered before the break, right on back shoulder, touchdown, fantastic
* (Drive 5): Powerful delivery on quick slant
* (Drive 5): Great throw on seam for TD, delivered with pressure in face, threw the ball slightly behind in order to fit right into hole in zone and allow WR to adjust. Great.
* Helped himself a whole lot.
* First two drives went 3-and-out, largely from bad run game and poor protection. Frustratingly little to judge Locker on in 1st half.
* The pro-level tools are evident. Obvious NFL arm.
* Accuracy a BIG concern. Lots of throws just off-target. Thew skinny post too high twice.
* Started to come alive in drive 4. Couple of strong throws, but also couple of off-target throws that defenders could jump on.
* No wonder Mayock has such a problem judging him. All sorts of tools here, undermined by this accuracy problem.
* Is accuracy fixable? Locker still inexperienced working from pocket. Ripe for molding by a QB guru?
* Smallest 6'3", 225lb QB I've ever seen. Disappears in the pocket.
* Completed passes in wide-open lanes. Avoided throwing over the top of people at all costs.
* (Drive 1): High and off-target out on 3rd-and-4 ended drive
* (Drive 2): Good on-target PA rollout throw to deep crossing route, WR dropped it.
* (Drive 2): Picked off on deep pass underthrown, but was throwing it up on free play from defensive offsides. Bad throw but not a bad decision as McElroy knew it was a free play. Slid to the left to get out of pocket to attempt throw - again, avoiding throwing it over the line.
* (Drive 2): Good PA screen, again slid around rush before willing to throw.
* Injured throwing hand hitting it on lineman's helmet, struggled in Drive 3 due probably to injury, won't use it for evaluation.
* Great pocket awareness, excelled at avoiding rush
* Throws lacked power, did not look like an NFL arm
* (Drive 1): Too-high throw on WR screen, caught but slowed receiver for easy tackle
* (Drive 1): Off-target on curl on 3rd down, ending drive
* (Drive 2): Slooow throw on slant, got WR hit, no catch, throw was high and WR had to leave feet to go for it
* (Drive 2): Slowball on slot seam, ball didn't make it to WR, defender jumped all over it
* (Drive 3): Came alive a bit on this drive, delivered good ball on bootleg with defender in face.
* Good feet but overall the arm looked dead
* Disappointing outing
* A number of near-miss throws
* Wish we could have seen more throws. Arm looked more lively than advertised.
* (Drive 1): Touch throw down the sideline, just delivered too far inside
* (Drive 1): Nice medium range completion with pressure in face
* (Drive 1): Near-miss throwing off back foot on deep post
* (Drive 2): Great PA bootleg and on-target throw to receiver in tight coverage
* Left game early after taking hit to chest. Want to see more to judge
* I want this guy
* Smart, decisive, not rattled by pressure
* Inexperience in pocket biggest downside, ran Nevada's pistol for 4 years. Lots of read options.
* WHAT AN ARM. This may be an elite NFL arm if he learns better how to use it.
* Has the legs to keep plays alive.
* (Drive 1): Powerful throw running out of pressure on 1st play, delivered right to receiver, who bobbled it up in air for INT. Bad stat line but positive play for Kaepernick.
* (Drive 2): Powerful throw on slant. Mechanics slightly odd looking but delivers ball effortlessly.
* (Drive 2): Couldn't beat Von Miller on naked zone read to left - will have to learn that that won't work against NFL linebackers.
* (Drive 3): BANG! Throw to receiver sitting down in zone hole. Stepped away from sack and delivered a STRONG ball without a full step forward.
* (Drive 3): Fast completion to receiver on slant, got ball out quickly
* (Drive 3): Missed recognition of receiver breaking back to him on rollout, missed opportunity
* (Drive 3): Frustrating pursuers with his ability to keep play alive and make them run the width of the field
* (Drive 4): Great scramble to keep play alive, came back to other side of the field, delivered strong ball throwing across body, receiver dropped it
* Legitimate high ceiling prospect. Helped himself a lot. Definitely a draft-and-develop guy.
* 2nd rounder? Probably.
* Just a sensational arm, which wasn't on display as much at Nevada as he ran it so much (rightly so for college ball).
By far, the guys that looked the best were Ponder and Kaepernick. As of right now, I think both guys are solid 2nd round picks. Ponder is starting to look like the guy that we expected to develop into a 1st round QB, but injuries are a concern going forward (healthy now, but obviously prone to injury). Looking best for a team with an offense built on timing routes. Kaepernick looks like a guy that needs the kind of QB coaching Mike Vick has been getting in Philly. Superstar potential, needs to learn the game better. Big arm and big mobility but also high character and work ethic. Not going to flame out JaMarcus-style.
I don't know what to make of Locker right now. The tools still say 1st rounder. Somewhere, there's a QB coach watching his film that thinks he can solve the accuracy problem.
Andy Dalton, I can't wait to see at the Combine. I need to go back and watch the Rose Bowl again too. I feel like there's something there.
McElroy and Stanzi, I'm not really feeling.