QB Lamar Jackson, Louisville*

6’2” – 216 lbs. – 4.40e

Profile:

  • Started nine games as a freshman. Won the Heisman Trophy as a sophomore, totaling over five thousand combined yards and fifty-one touchdowns. Went over five thousand yards again as a junior, totaling forty-five touchdowns but finishing behind Baker Mayfield in Heisman voting. Decided to forego his senior season in order to declare for the draft.

Positives:

  • Has a reasonable combination of height and bulk for a pro quarterback. A true dual threat who dominated college football over the past two seasons as both a passer and a runner. Electric athlete with outstanding elusiveness and speed; can often escape from pressure and create something out of nothing. Was able to create with his legs on designed draws and read options, plays which constituted a major part of his offense. Has some experience going through progressions. Has a quick release, throwing darts with a three-quarters delivery. Excellent raw arm talent; possesses effortless arm strength to flick the ball downfield with velocity using his wrist. Deep balls can sail on the outside but exhibits the ability to drop in some passes with touch down the field. Considered to be very humble off the field.

Negatives:

  • Frame looks a little bit thin. Does his work from the pistol and shotgun and will have to adjust to taking snaps from under center at the next level. Accuracy is the major question mark about his game, however; really suffers to throw the ball outside the hashes, spraying it around. Could take something off of his shorter throws. Forces receivers to adjust to his throws, limiting opportunities to generate yards after the catch. Doesn’t always open up and step into throws, passing from a narrow base at times. Has a tendency to stare down targets and makes some questionable decisions to throw the ball into tight coverage. A tougher runner than anticipated, but has a thin frame and subjects it to a lot of big hits, which could create question marks about his ability to withstand the punishment of the pro game. Wonderlic score of 13. Teams will probably need to tailor an offense around his particular strengths and limitations, rather than inserting him into a traditional pro-style offense.

Summary:

  • Sure to be a polarizing prospect because he doesn’t fit the traditional mold of a pro quarterback. Has a highly intriguing combination of athleticism and arm strength which made him one of the most exciting college quarterbacks in recent memory, but also has accuracy struggles and scheme fit questions which make him a significant gamble. Will probably go in the first round for a team willing to roll the dice.
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