I start Part 2 with the Number 4 ranked QB heading into the 2012 Draft.
4.) Russell Wilson 5’11” 204 LBS WISCONSIN/NC STATE 4.55 40-YD DASH 6.97 3-CONE DRILL
If you noticed, I made sure to shout-out the other school Wilson attended prior to arriving on campus in Madison Wisconsin.
You may have also noticed how high he is on my Big Board for Quarterbacks.
His production in two different conferences in consecutive seasons to end his collegiate career was too much to turn a blind eye and say he isn’t a good NFL prospect because of his height. They told Drew Brees the same thing coming out of another Big Ten school in Purdue.
Wilson still reigns supreme throughout the ACC and NC State record books when it comes to most significant passing records. (3rd NC ST/12th ACC PASS YDS, 2nd NC ST/3rd ACC TD PASSES, and these are just a few all-time career marks) Just imagine the records and accomplishments this young man may have had if he was given the chance to stay in Raleigh.
He would go on to run a pro-style offense at Wisconsin and set single season school records for passing yards (3,175), touchdown passes (33), completions (225), and had a pass efficiency rating of 191.8. The efficiency rating would eclipse the career mark as well for the Badgers with at least a minimum of 300 pass attempts. Wilson has showed all of the tools in his college career to prove all the naysayers wrong.
A point I like to stress when it comes to Russell Wilson potentially being a bust, is unlike those who received the same criticism Wilson has very good arm strength and accuracy when he has time. Look at his forty time and that should show you he has the athletic ability to keep any play alive.
5.) Ryan Tannehill 6’4″ 221 LBS TEXAS A&M
Tannehill sat out on his March seventh pro-day and didn’t have any significant measurable’s at the NFL Combine due to his recovery from recent off-season foot surgery.
This may prove to hurt his stock in the long run unless his workout on March 28th he has rescheduled shows him grading on every task through the roof.
I keep Tannehill in the number 5 position, unlike many, for one simple reason. He only started one full season at Quarterback while at Texas A&M. In his 49 career games playing for A&M he only started 19 at QB.
Though Tannehill has shown the athletic ability and size to be a work in progress at the next level, I find it hard to put more faith in selecting him over guys who may have started and played 3 plus years at Quarterback for their respective teams.
Ultimately his overall production and commitment to playing wide receiver then winning over the QB spot in College Station,(even though he was brought in at first in 2008 to play QB) shows NFL teams he will do whatever it takes to win. Really showing in his college career he knows exactly what it takes to make sure your team can successful at all costs.
6.) Nick Foles 6’5″ 243 LBS ARIZONA 5.14 40-YD DASH 112 INCH BROAD JUMP
When you look at the two numbers for Foles (40 Time, Broad Jump) compared to Andrew Luck, some would think this guy looks slow and lazy.
When in fact, the opposite has been true over his very productive career as an Arizona Wildcat.
Foles transferred from Michigan State after his Freshman season to move to Tucson and start 3 straight years for the Wildcats. In his 3 years career at Arizona, Nick would go on to throw for 10,011 yards and 67 touchdowns.
At the least, Nick Foles has the size and mechanics to be a first day pick in the NFL Draft. For any team looking to have a solid young back-up with plenty of upside and possibly compete for the starting job in the future Foles should be a no-brainer depending on where he is selected. Anytime after the first round makes sense and would be a great value pick for a team needing a solid QB for less money moving forward.
7.) Kirk Cousins 6’3″ 214 LBS MICHIGAN STATE 4.93 40-YD DASH 7.05 3-CONE DRILL
This guy alone was the single reason Nick Foles decided he better transfer if he wanted to get significant playing time.
Cousins proved over his stellar career as a Spartan that he was not only reliable in crunch but also a guy who wouldn’t cost his team a game. More of a game manager at times earlier in his career, Cousins made sure his later days in Lansing, fans saw him winning games with the team on his back.
Also being a Captain 3 years in row will definitely prove a positive on his NFL resume. Never did he finish a season with a completion percentage under 60 or a QB rating under 142. He will always be remembered by Big Ten fans and College Football fans alike for one of the more recent miraculous plays in NCAA football history.
October 22, 2011 Kirk Cousins threw a last second Hail Mary at Home against Wisconsin that was completed and reviewed as the games winning touchdown with no time left. One of the most memorable plays of the 2011 season.
His athletic ability will allow him to make some plays but he doesn’t posses the speed to outrun anyone. Cousins will have to rely more on his work ethic and intangibles at the next level but combine that with great decision making and he could have a lengthy pro career whether he is a backup or a guy waiting on his opportunity.
SLEEPER NAMES WHO YOU MAY HEAR:
Brock Osweiler 6’7″ 242 LBS ARIZONA STATE
Osweiler has freakish size and athletic ability considering he was originally recruited by Gonzaga to play Basketball. He may hear his name called as early as Day One based on his arm strength and quick release allowing him to make pretty much every NFL throw.
To me his size may be a risk the older he gets, along with the fact that he can’t be that fast that big at the next level. Despite that being said, he has shown great footwork and pocket presence in college. Can that translate to the NFL?
Ryan Lindley 6’4″ 229 LBS SAN DIEGO STATE
This is another guy who has all the athletic ability and arm strength to be a first-fourth round draft selection.
He may be too in-consistent to invest that first day money in but he is definitely a stable option number two behind a proven starting QB. It would benefit both sides if he found a team who could tutor him and allow him to develop into a better decision maker and mature NFL signal caller.
Kellen Moore 6’0″ 197 LBS BOISE STATE & Case Keenum 6’1″ 208 LBS HOUSTON
The combination of these two quarterbacks have way too many wins and starts in their career to not get an opportunity somewhere when camps open up for the 2012 NFL season.
Moore and Keenum are proven winners and leaders that have contributed both on and off the field in the surrounding areas of their campuses. Both of them should exceed expectations when it comes to those mental tools, other than the physical ones on the field, needed to be successful as a pro-football player in today’s game.