Every week up until the 2019 NFL Draft on April 25, The Barber’s Chair will post weekly scouting reports of the top prospects to watch in this year’s selection class. The players are listed in no particular order. The heights and weights of each athlete were gathered from NFL.com’s official Combine results page.
Duke | 6’5” | 221 lbs.
Strengths: Decisive with his quick throws. Great short accuracy. Doesn’t get careless when the play breaks down. It showed with his limited turnovers. Will carve up a zone defense all the way down the field. Good at throwing on the run. Can run a read-option. Broke some long runs for touchdowns. Knows how to read the defenders. Scored several touchdowns because he waited for the defender to bite then threw it behind them.
Weaknesses: Needs to learn to be a pure pocket passer. Not fast enough to be considered mobile. Broke those long TDs but was getting less than five yards on most of his attempts. Never saw him attempt to slide. Would like to see him air it out more, especially when they’re down. His deep balls were either underthrown or dropped.
Pro Comparison: Nick Foles. Limited turnovers with an unnecessary infatuation with running the ball early in his career. Will likely flip-flop between competent starter and solid backup for several years until he finds a groove.
Missouri | 6’4” | 228 lbs.
Strengths: Beautiful deep ball. High-arching and leads his receivers with it. Nice side-arm throw. Rips teams apart in the middle of the field. Maximizes the strengths of his tight end. Some eye-popping pro level throws. Great passes throwing toward the sideline. Knows when and how to slide. Had an incredible 13 TD / 0 INT ratio on play-action last season.
Weaknesses: Needs to learn to climb in the pocket for the type of QB he is. He either stays flat-footed or rolls to the right when his first read isn’t there. Took advantage of favorable match-ups but never rose to the level of greater competition.
Pro Comparison: Matthew Stafford. Visible arm talent but would be better served with an established run game.
I had the same takeaway from watching both guys. I’m really interested to see how much better they can be when surrounded by pro talent. Neither of them had the help of a legit running attack and Daniel Jones’ receivers had an inexcusable amount of drops. Both guys flashed major potential so let’s see if their skills can translate into NFL-style offenses.
Oklahoma | 5’10” | 207 lbs.
Strengths: Happy feet. His feet are never flat and are always moving in case he has to take off. Very skilled runner but is still a pass-first quarterback. Running is a last resort. Crazy elusiveness that allows him to change directions without altering speed. Oklahoma’s poor defense forced him into many shootouts but he never lost composure. Baseball background taught him to create effortless throws at all angles, speeds, and distances. Insane improvisation skills.
Weaknesses: I’m worried his great offensive line at Oklahoma spoiled him. His NFL o-line may not allow him to dance around in the pocket as much. Needs to learn to slide better. Lost a fumble against West Virginia from falling forward. Has to slide earlier as well. NFL linebackers are going to close in on him a lot faster.
Pro Comparison: Russell Wilson. Can make magic on a broken play. Able to run a read-option based offense or drop back every snap if needed. Both have the baseball background as well.
Ohio State | 6’3” | 231 lbs.
Strengths: Hyper productive (50 TDs) against solid competition with limited starting experience. Already looks very mature and polished. Climbs the pocket well while always keeping his eyes downfield. Accurate throws on the run. Takes what the defense gives him. Spreads the ball around without forcing it to anyone.
Weaknesses: Heavy feet. Isn’t always able to escape when the pocket collapses. Rarely faced with the adversity of having to play from behind. Lost against Purdue for this reason. Overzealous with fitting balls into tight windows.
Pro Comparison: Jared Goff. Possesses all the intangibles and is capable of leading a dominant team with the right pieces and coaching staff.