2017 NFL draft rankings: Quarterbacks
The Browns, 49ers and Bears could all use their first pick on a quarterback. Alone, that’s enough to think another early quarterback run is waiting at the 2017 NFL draft, even if this year’s class winds up not entirely warranting such a commitment.
The top four names in our QB rankings right now could be Round 1-bound, but several others may wind up among a group of promising mid-round selections. Is there enough talent at the top for those teams in need?
|1||Deshaun Watson||Clemson||6' 2", 221 lbs.|
|2||Patrick Mahomes||Texas Tech||6' 2", 225 lbs.|
|3||DeShone Kizer||Notre Dame||6' 4", 233 lbs.|
|4||Mitchell Trubisky||North Carolina||6' 2", 222 lbs.|
|5||Brad Kaaya||Miami||6' 4", 214 lbs.|
|6||Nathan Peterman||Pittsburgh||6' 2", 226 lbs.|
|7||Jerod Evans||Virginia Tech||6' 3", 232 lbs.|
|8||Davis Webb||Cal||6' 5", 229 lbs.|
|9||Joshua Dobbs||Tennessee||6' 3", 216 lbs.|
|10||Chad Kelly||Ole Miss||6' 2", 224 lbs.|
Each of the top four quarterbacks has a claim to the top spot, as well as a glaring issue that comes with his game. Watson turned the ball over too much, Mahomes comes from a Texas Tech “Air Raid” system that could make his NFL transition difficult, Kizer wilted in 2016 as his team struggled and Trubisky has footwork issues that could take a while to fix. Watson holds an edge here as much for the work he does pre-snap as the production he put up—the former certainly led to the latter. He showed up on the biggest stages. With a game built so much around how he can improvise, Mahomes won’t be for everyone, but he has a huge arm and incredible upside. Kizer has an inch-plus of height and a good 10 to 15 pounds on Watson, which counts in the pocket, and he also can get out and run when he needs to. Trubisky is such a mixed bag: He might be the first QB off the board, and he also might need the most seasoning before he’s ready to start.
Virginia Tech’s Evans was a surprise entry to this year’s draft. His size and ability on the move is reminiscent of what Kizer can do. There’s a drop-off beyond the top four in this class, so why not roll the dice on a multi-dimensional threat?
It’ll be interesting to see what becomes of Kelly, who has off-field red flags that denied him a combine invite and is working back from a torn ACL.
Montana’s Brady Gustafson drew the early tag as “2017 Carson Wentz”: tall, FCS program, high-powered offense. Don’t forget the name Alek Torgersen, though. We talked about the Penn QB on an episode of the On the Clock Podcast, and there’s a lot to like in his game.