Top 5 QB prospects in college football

Christopher High
August 25, 2014

This past year’s draft was full of talent at just about every position. Next years draft seems to have just about as much talent but much more so at the the most important position in football. Quarterback. Here are my top five draft eligible college quarterbacks.
1. Marcus Mariota: Mariota is the new prototype of the NFL today. He’s big, listed at 6′ 4″, athletic, and has a very live arm. He has a feel for running lanes and uses his legs to pick up yards and extend the play. Watching him play he feels a lot like a more polished Ryan Tannahill. About the same size both had good arms and are athletic. The only real flaw in Mariota’s game at this point is under pressure. When asked to carry the offense he seems to get overwhelmed quickly. he will need to learn to make more reads in the NFL where he will be asked to go through his progressions as apposed to at Oregon Where he is asked to throw to only one side of the field.

2. Bryce Petty: Where as Mariota is a sports car Petty is much more of the family sedan. He’s got good size at 6’3″ and a very good frame to be able to take the hits in the NFL. He shows good ball placement and accuracy and also has a strong arm. Don’t be fooled into thinking he’s a running quarterback by his 14 rushing touchdowns. He is very much so a pocket passer who is a niffty runner able to get those scores in the red zone but do not look for him to remind you of Cam Newton in the open field. The biggest question I have about Petty is if his success is because of him, his coach, the players around him, or a mix of all of these.

3.Brett Hundley: For my money Hundley is by far the best most physically gifted draft eligible QB. He’s big, strong, fast, big frame, big arm, and has the change of direction skills coaches look for in running back not quarterbacks. Hundley like many college quarterbacks doesn’t have a lot of reads. He mostly looks at one receiver then runs if nothing is open but on broken plays he does a great job keeping his eyes down the field. The problems? Well for starters he has a low release point and a slower throwing motion then you would like. Also the UCLA offense is built a round short quick passes that doesn’t always show Hundley’s arm strength throwing the ball down the field. But with another year as a starter under his belt we could see Hundley become the top QB prospect by the time all is said and done.

4. Jameis Winston: There is so much to love about Winston and yet so much that will make you cringe. On the good side he’s a huge hulking man who is so strong he can shrug off defensive ends. But the bad part of that is he will old onto the ball too long and take a sack. Hes got an amazingly strong arm. But he often throws late. He just wills his way to victory. But he sometimes kills the team with mistakes. There were games last year i didn’t believe him to be the best QB on the field. I’m not as big a fan of his as most people are. He has one of the slowest releases you will ever see and that unlike footwork and mechanics is almost impossible to change. I don’t have too big of an issue with his mental mistakes considering this was his first year starting at this level. He is inconsistently accurate but his ball placement is terrible. There are about 3 or 4 times a game where he would throw it up to Kelvin Benjamin, who would of course come down with it, where if Jameis had thrown it right at Kelvin it would have been an even bigger play because of yards after the catch. I see Jameis as a good player though i don’t believe he is a great player and i don’t know if he will ever be that. Especially at the next level.

5. Sean Mannion: The purest pocket passer out f all the guys on this list, I really like the way this kid throws the ball. He’s large at 6′ 5″ and has the frame to put on a little more weight to take the hits in the NFL. Mannion’s arm strength is by far his biggest asset. Not many quarterbacks in the NFL can make the throws he does off their back foot. But that is also a down side for Mannion, turn on the tape against Utah and he seems to never set his feet. Now that has a lot to do with his offensive line but even when given time there are times he doesn’t step into his throws. He goes throw progressions to some extent though not at an NFL level yet. With a very quick release for his size Mannion has all the tools to be a very good NFL QB. The biggest things he need to fix are the habit of throwing off his back foot, locking into targets, and most importantly throwing with accuracy on a consistent basis. He can make throws that take your breathe away but then he can turn around and overthrow a target that’s wide open. Mannion could turn into the best QB out of this draft but he needs to fix those problems.


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