View Full Version : good 2010 draft qb analysis

02-11-2010, 05:36 PM
The author looks like Philip River's younger brother but he does an excellent job with this look at the 2010 qb class:


The 2009 quarterback class, so far, has been better than expected. Despite the ill-fated history of underclassman signal callers, all three of last year's first-round early entrants (Mark Sanchez, Josh Freeman, Matthew Stafford) wound up starting and flashing franchise quarterback ability in their first seasons. Rams sixth-round pick Keith Null was the only other rookie to start a game, but every QB drafted made his team's roster, or was at least added to it by season's end, and eight other undrafted passers are currently under contract for 2010.

This year's crop appears to be especially top heavy in that Sam Bradford and Jimmy Clausen are the only quarterbacks definitely worth drafting in round one. After the aforementioned go off the board, it wouldn't be surprising if the entire second round passes without a single QB chosen.

Desperation, particularly in league thin on QBs, will likely prevent that from happening.

The Scouting Combine is two weeks away and Pro Days are right around the corner. Let's dissect this year's top-15 quarterbacks and perhaps uncover who will emerge as the third best prospect, or even begin nipping at Bradford and Clausen's heels.

1. Sam Bradford, Oklahoma

Height/Weight: 6'4/223
College Experience: Fourth-year junior
Projected 40: 4.69
Comparison: Matt Schaub
2008* Stats: 328-of-483 (67.9%) for 4,720 yds (9.8 YPA), 50 TD/8 INT; 5 RUS TDs

Positives: There wasn't a more dominant QB in the nation over the course of Bradford's freshman and sophomore seasons. During that span, the Academic All American completed 68.6% of his attempts for 86 touchdowns and just 16 interceptions. Bradford left school as the NCAA's all-time leader in pass efficiency, demonstrating incredible accuracy and aggressiveness throwing downfield. Though Oklahoma's offense became more spread oriented late in Bradford's career, it still incorporated plenty of pro-style concepts and required the 2008 Heisman winner to make deep throws while taking his fair share of snaps from center and utilizing play action. When 100%, Bradford demonstrated above-average arm strength. Often executing precise throws on the move, the once-decorated high school basketball player is highly athletic.

Negatives: Bradford's 2009 season ended after three games when he aggravated an AC joint shoulder sprain originally suffered in the Sooners' opener. Dr. James Andrews performed a reconstruction on October 28, afterwards saying the surgery went "just as we expected." Despite his 6'4/223-pound listing at Oklahoma, Bradford often looked to be playing in the 200-pound range and could afford to bulk up. Bradford's passing mechanics were flawless for the Sooners' mostly-spread attack, but will change in a pro-style system. He was surrounded by countless high draft picks, including 2008 second-rounder Malcolm Kelly, 2009 third-rounder Juaquin Iglesias, likely 2010 first-round tight end Jermaine Gresham, and an annually star-studded Sooners offensive line.

Outlook: He's throwing three days a week and says his recovery is ahead of schedule. Bradford's calling cards are his accuracy, athleticism and smarts, making him an ideal fit for a West Coast offense. Early workout reports are good, but Bradford's showing at his March Pro Day will have a huge impact on his stock. Should he impress, Bradford could emerge as the favorite to be drafted No. 1 overall by St. Louis. Bradford won't get by the Bills at No. 9.

2. Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame

Height/Weight: 6'3/223
College Experience: Third-year junior
Projected 40: 4.91
Comparison: Philip Rivers
2009 Stats: 289-of-425 (68.0%) for 3,722 yds (8.8 YPA), 28 TD/4 INT

Positives: A three-year starter, Clausen's improvement between 2007 and 2009 was as dramatic as any quarterback at any stage of football during that span, indicating his trajectory is still pointing skyward. Clausen ranked third nationally in pass efficiency last season (only Tim Tebow and Boise State's Kellen Moore made fewer mistakes), improving his TD-to-INT ratio and completion rate to near-perfect levels. This was all despite Clausen playing nearly the entire year through torn toe ligaments, a poor offensive line, and star wideout Michael Floyd's six-week absence due to a broken collarbone. Clausen puts ideal zip on intermediate passes and benefited from Charlie Weis' pro-style offense, which required him to make NFL-style throws. Clausen's competitiveness and toughness are reminiscent of Philip Rivers', although they can be mistaken for overt cockiness and/or egotism.

Negatives: Clausen typically delivers the ball quickly, but tends to reel back his right arm abnormally far on deep passes. It's possible that elbow surgery prior to his freshman year cost Clausen some arm power, forcing him to compensate. On some downfield routes, Weis teaches his quarterback to essentially throw the ball up for grabs, which Clausen got away with because Floyd and Golden Tate were perhaps Division I's best receiver tandem last year. There have been rumors that Clausen was not a good teammate or leader. His career record was 16-18.

Outlook: Despite his pro-style background, Clausen has plenty of developing to do. He could've used another year in college, but that wasn't an option after Weis' firing. Like Bradford, Clausen will miss the Combine after having toe surgery early last month. When healthy, Clausen projects well into virtually any scheme because of his quality arm and above-average accuracy. If Buffalo passes on Clausen at No. 9, a team is sure to snare him in the mid- to late-first round.

3. Tony Pike, Cincinnati

Height/Weight: 6'6/212
College Experience: Fifth-year senior
Projected 40: 5.05
Comparison: Brad Johnson
2009 Stats: 211-of-338 (62.4%) for 2,520 yds (7.5 YPA), 29 TD/6 INT; 2 RUS TDs

Positives: Showing great resiliency to climb the Bearcats' entire six-man QB depth chart in '08, Pike went on to earn second-team All-Big East honors as a first-year starter and first team in '09. Pike posted a 48:18 TD-to-INT ratio and 61.9 completion rate in his final two years, guiding UC to an undefeated regular season as a senior. Pike wastes no time in his delivery, shows impressive touch at the first and second levels, and flashes enough arm strength to improve as a deep-ball thrower. The consensus at Senior Bowl week was that Pike was the most NFL-ready passer on either side, outplaying the field of Tim Tebow, Zac Robinson, Dan LeFevour, and Sean Canfield. WVU's Jarrett Brown showed more ability, but Brown was far less consistent than Pike.

Negatives: Pike is rail thin, which may explain his proneness to injury. With no viable options behind him at UC, Pike had to play through a broken non-throwing arm in 2008. He had surgery, missed two games, and reinjured the arm as a senior when the existing plate in his wrist shifted. He needed another procedure, missing three more games. Pike was never off-the-charts accurate, and his ball placement outside the numbers is hit or miss. Bearcats coach Brian Kelly's offense relied heavily on rub routes and bubble screens that didn't allow Pike to go deep often. Pike turns 24 in March and is the oldest QB on this list. He started only 20 games in college, played almost every snap out of the shotgun, and tends to sense pressure when it isn't there.

Outlook: Pike will begin his career as a backup, giving him time to fill out physically. He offers starting-caliber tools, prototypical height, and naturally sound decision making. But Pike is an obvious work in progress with lots of kinks coming from Kelly's spread. He projects as a late third- to fourth-round pick with the chance at a long career as an eventual starter or quality No. 2.

4. John Skelton, Fordham

Height/Weight: 6'5/244
College Experience: Fourth-year senior
Projected 40: 4.95
Comparison: Kerry Collins
2009 Stats: 284-of-441 (64.4%) for 3,708 yds (8.4 YPA), 26 TD/10 INT; 5 RUS TDs

Positives: When searching for prospects at the sub-FBS level, all-out dominance is the No. 1 requirement. Skelton fits the bill. Topping 300 yards in 8-of-11 games and 400 in four as a senior, Skelton showed impressive accuracy and arm strength from an array of release points, usually to escape or simply throw around pass rushers. Skelton has perhaps the draft's liveliest arm and was outrageously aggressive at Fordham, routinely overlooking the safe dump-off play for the big one while always keeping his eyes downfield. A four-year starter, Skelton finished his final three seasons with a 63:28 TD-to-INT ratio and missed just one game due to injury in his career.

Negatives: Skelton's level of competition is a major concern. Against schools like Bryant, Lehigh, Lafayette and Colgate, Skelton should have lit it up. He frequently evaded pressure with his legs against non-scholarship Patriot Leaguers, which he has no chance of doing in the NFL. Skelton is versed with regard to the play-action fake, but worked primarily from the shotgun in the Rams' spread offense. East-West Shrine observers noted that Skelton showed premier velocity at the all-star event, but erratic accuracy. Fordham went 10-12 in his final two years.

Outlook: One can't help but be impressed by Skelton's ability to flick his wrist and throw it 60 yards, knack for the big play, and willingness to hang in the pocket amid oncoming rush. NFL evaluators will also like that Skelton is a coach's son. He is a developmental project that may take two or more years to realize his potential, but is certain to intrigue teams that run vertical offenses.

5. Jonathan Crompton, Tennessee

Height/Weight: 6'4/228
College Experience: Fifth-year senior
Projected 40: 4.89
Comparison: Matt Moore
2009 Stats: 224-of-384 (58.3%) for 2,800 yds (7.3 YPA), 27 TD/13 INT

Positives: After a sluggish start to his senior year, Crompton exploded under the tutelage of pro-style offensive mind Lane Kiffin. He posted a 22:6 TD-to-INT ratio in the Volunteers' final 10 games, taking just 12 sacks all regular season. Crompton possesses NFL starting-caliber arm strength and is highly effective throwing on the move. He took most of his snaps from center in Kiffin's NFL-like system and flourished despite perhaps the weakest supporting cast Tennessee has fielded in the last two decades. Crompton flashes the ability to fit passes into tight spaces and offers lots of potential as a vertical passer. His pocket poise improved markedly as a senior.

Negatives: The nation's No. 3 quarterback recruit in '05 (behind Ryan Perrilloux and Mark Sanchez), Crompton underachieved throughout his first four years. He battled confidence woes, underwent two throwing arm surgeries (shoulder - 2006, elbow - 2008), and was sitting on a 9:9 career TD-to-INT ratio entering his senior season. Crompton had the look of a coach killer leading up to respected play-caller David Cutcliffe's exit and was benched four games into his junior year, during which longtime coach Phil Fulmer was fired. Crompton finished his career with a poor 55.3 completion rate. Earlier on, he was unable to beat out Erik Ainge, who is a fringe NFL player.

Outlook: Crompton wasn't invited to the Senior Bowl, East-West Shrine, or Combine, and had to settle for the Texas vs. Nation game, where he was head-and-shoulders better than the rest of the quarterback field. Crompton doesn't even have a complete season of effective passing on his resume, but has shown that he will respond to skilled coaching and doesn't lack any of the physical traits to be an NFL starter. Crompton is another project, but with plenty of ceiling.

6. Jarrett Brown, West Virginia

Height/Weight: 6'3/219
College Experience: Fifth-year senior
Projected 40: 4.59
Comparison: David Garrard
2009 Stats: 187-of-296 (63.2%) for 2,144 yds (7.2 YPA), 11 TD/9 INT; 4.0 YPC, 6 TDs

Positives/Negatives: A misfit for WVU's read-option spread that was so successfully directed by Pat White for four years, Brown rode the pine thanklessly right up until his fifth season in school. Brown confirmed at last month's Senior Bowl that he is a pro-style passer first, and runner second. While the athleticism can't hurt, Brown is the complete package in terms of size and arm strength and was hamstrung by the Mountaineers' run-heavy system. He has very little experience reading coverage and finished his career with just 14 starts, winning 11. Brown did play well when given the opportunity due to White's injuries and has the mental capacity to learn quickly. Brown was annually a member of West Virginia's Academic Honor Roll and Dean's List.

Outlook: Quite possibly the biggest project in the draft, Brown may also offer the most upside. His impressive, if inconsistent, performance at January's Senior Bowl will work in his favor. Brown is well worth a mid-round flier, even if he's unlikely to see the field before 2012.

7. Tim Tebow, Florida

Height/Weight: 6'3/236
College Experience: Fourth-year senior
Projected 40: 4.79
Comparison: Drew Stanton
2009 Stats: 213-of-314 (67.8%) for 2,895 yds (9.2 YPA), 21 TD/5 INT; 4.2 YPC, 14 TDs

Positives/Negatives: A three-year starter who contributed heavily all four seasons under Urban Meyer, Tebow has received no schooling on the fundamentals of drop-back passing. While more physically developed and proven as a winner at college's highest level, Tebow's mechanical flaws are the same ones he excelled despite in high school. Tebow makes great decisions (88:16 career TDs to INTs) and completed 66.4% of his career throws while shattering Emmitt Smith's all-time UF record for rushing TDs. He is also perhaps the draft's best long-ball passer, which was a key part of Meyer's offense with Louis Murphy (2007-08) and Riley Cooper ('09) as the recipients. Intelligent, Tebow was an Academic All American and demonstrated the ability to learn quickly at the Senior Bowl, improving every day in his first experience as an under-center QB.

Outlook: Lacking foot speed to run by NFL defenders, Tebow immediately loses one of his defining assets upon entry into the pros. He also won't be able to pick up big chunks of yardage by powering through defensive lines. Tebow still has the smarts, leadership skills, and downfield passing ability to carve out a career. The guess here is Tebow never becomes a full-time starter barring miraculous quarterback coaching, but will be a contributor for a creative team.

8. Colt McCoy, Texas

Height/Weight: 6'2/210
College Experience: Fifth-year senior
Projected 40: 4.72
Comparison: Shaun Hill
2009 Stats: 332-of-470 (70.6%) for 3,521 yds (7.5 YPA), 27 TD/12 INT; 2.7 YPC, 1 TD

Positives/Negatives: A four-year starter and son of a coach, McCoy beat out fellow top recruit Jevan Snead as a freshman and went on to go 45-7 as the Longhorns' signal caller. The all-time NCAA record holder in victories, McCoy won 2009 Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year and finished his career with a 70.3 completion rate and 112:45 TD-to-INT ratio. However, McCoy played in a Texas Tech-style spread offense that called for roughly 70% of UT's passing plays to fall within the 5-10 yard vicinity. McCoy was able to connect on deep balls when Jordan Shipley or Malcolm Williams got wide open, but was never asked to fit passes into tight spaces at the intermediate or deep levels. He took almost every snap in his career from the shotgun, and is lacking in both arm strength and size. McCoy also struggled badly against top competition. He bowed out on the first possession of January's BCS title game due to a routine "burner."

Outlook: McCoy was a statistically accurate thrower in UT's spread but Kliff Kingsbury and Graham Harrell were too in similar systems. When asked to make tough throws, McCoy often answered with head-scratching ducks or passes at his receivers' feet. McCoy's senior year was also arguably his worst. Like most of the quarterbacks on this list, McCoy is a developmental project. Due to physical shortcomings, he possesses the least upside among the top eight.

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02-11-2010, 06:06 PM
I definitely like the thought of picking up Pike (I'm glad to see a scouting report that sees the same thing that I did when I watched him) or Skelton as developmental projects in the 3rd/4th AFTER we make some moves to improve or offensive and defensive lines if the value adds up properly.

I would be ok with either of the 1st round QBs if we absolutely love them (it is very hard to argue with Bradford's numbers, but if his arm is better we will probably have no shot at him anyway), but there is little chance that they will have an impact this coming year and I see enough questions in both of their games to feel that the risk isn't necessarily worth it that high in the draft, especially if a project QB with the same or more upside will be available 2 rounds later.

02-11-2010, 06:12 PM
they have colt at #8 huh, is he really gonna fall out of the 2nd round?

Pony Boy
02-11-2010, 06:17 PM
I definitely like the thought of picking up Pike

Negatives: Pike is rail thin, which may explain his proneness to injury.

We drafted on of those rail thin guys once.... didn't work out real well.......

02-11-2010, 06:17 PM
they have colt at #8 huh, is he really gonna fall out of the 2nd round?

I can't see why not, he isn't really any better (except at scrambling) than Graham Harrell was and Harrell didn't even get drafted. Hell, McCoy's last two years are crap compared to Harrell's junior and senior years against essentially the same competition.

02-11-2010, 06:19 PM
Negatives: Pike is rail thin, which may explain his proneness to injury.

We drafted on of those rail thin guys once.... didn't work out real well.......

He would obviously need to hit the weight room hard during his 1st year and bulk up, but you aren't picking him up to start in 2010. I don't think McD would start any rookie QB unless he absolutely had to. I personally think that Bradford will have the same issue in the NFL.

All I know is that Pike impressed me every time that I watched him play (except maybe in the bowl game, but that wasn't even really fair), and I would be ecstatic if the Broncos were able to get him in the 3rd or 4th round.

I wouldn't complain if McD would rather have Skelton, as his upside is almost certainly much higher. Though he may need 2 years to crack the starting lineup.

02-11-2010, 06:40 PM

02-11-2010, 06:59 PM

How so? He broke his arm last year and then the plate that was used to fix it failed this year, they took it out and he finished the year unimpeded. He doesn't have some extensive history of soft tissue injuries. He had a broken bone and a complication with the repair of that bone. Not the same as constant knee and shoulder joint issues.

If someone is injury-prone, it almost always is due to constant injuries to ligaments and tendons (see: Torain, Ryan). That is not the problem Pike has had.

He NEEDS to put on weight if he's going to be successful and remain injury-free in the NFL. I'll be the first person to admit that, but he isn't injury-prone and is on nowhere near the same level as Croyle. Your statement simply proves your ignorance of the situation.

02-11-2010, 07:13 PM
I want Bradford or Skelton, and that's it in this draft.

02-11-2010, 07:30 PM
in terms of the QB those guys all project to be like, if we have to get a QB i want Clausen. if he can come in and play like Rivers i would be happy.

i know he is a bit of a douche, but if he puts up stats and wins like Rivers, i think all fans will be fine cheering on a giant douche like Clausen

02-11-2010, 07:35 PM
in terms of the QB those guys all project to be like, if we have to get a QB i want Clausen. if he can come in and play like Rivers i would be happy.

i know he is a bit of a douche, but if he puts up stats and wins like Rivers, i think all fans will be fine cheering on a giant douche like Clausen

i think weve had enough "giant douche" of a QB for awhile. a QB that the entire team cant get behind is not someone we need.

02-11-2010, 07:45 PM
i think weve had enough "giant douche" of a QB for awhile. a QB that the entire team cant get behind is not someone we need.

Clausen is actually a good leader and teammate. he just looks like a douche.

02-11-2010, 10:24 PM
Negatives: Pike is rail thin, which may explain his proneness to injury.

We drafted on of those rail thin guys once.... didn't work out real well.......

Was part of the Elway trade, so............