As the 2021 football season draws near, SI All-American continues to evaluate the nation's top prospects at every position in the class of 2022. The first wave of the evaluations are the 'Watch List' selections, also known as SI All-American candidates, to be released throughout the month of July.
It precedes the SI99 rankings, our preseason mark of America's top college football prospects regardless of position, to be released in August.
Naturally, the quarterback watch list is up first and it will be released in more detail than the rest. The 25 SI All-American candidates will be broken down in groups of five, with the top five revealed on Friday before other positions begin to roll out.
11. Gavin Wimsatt
Vitals: 6'3", 200 pounds
School: Owensboro (Ky.) High School
Committed To: Rutgers
2020 Stats: 2,349 passing yards, 59.3%, 27 TD
Wimsatt is a raw young quarterback that needs to improve every technical aspect of his game, but he's also a playmaker that can do damage from the pocket, outside the pocket and in the run game. The Owensboro standout has a great frame at 6-3 and 200 pounds, and there's a lot of room to add good weight. There's also a lot of room for him to keep adding more power to his throws.
Wimsatt has a little hitch when he throws, and you'll see him pat the ball a lot right before he's about to throw. He makes up for it with a quick, compact release. This is imperative for a play-action quarterback or a quarterback being asked to run a lot of RPO throws. It's also a trait that should allow him to develop into a highly accurate quarterback at the next level.
The Rutgers pledge needs to clean up his footwork in the pocket, but when he sets his feet he's accurate, shows good ball placement and he snaps the ball off. When he loses accuracy is when his feet get rushed or he's not stepping towards his target. As he gets more efficient mechanically his accuracy will take a jump. Athletically, Wimsatt shows exceptional foot quickness and balance, traits he uses to manipulate the pocket as a thrower and to do damage as a runner. He can do major damage as a runner, both on designed runs and when passing plays break down.
12. Justyn Martin
Vitals: 6'4", 210 pounds
School: Inglewood (Calif.) High School
Committed To: California
Martin is one of the more intriguing prospects in the country, and this ranking is more about outstanding raw talent and potential than it is about proven production to date. Martin is a one year starter, and that one year was incredibly short due to COVID-19. What Martin has, however, is tremendous raw tools that could allow him to far outplay this ranking.
If you’re someone who values prototypical quarterback size then you’ll love Martin. He’s listed at 6-4 and 201 pounds and he’s still on the thin side. He’ll continue to fill out and pack on even more mass to his frame. As he matures and gets stronger you’ll also see his arm get even stronger, which is something considering how well he already throws the football.
The ball explodes out of Martin’s hand and he can make every throw on the field. He easily attacks the more difficult parts of the field and he is a confident passer. Martin has long arms, which creates a longer throwing zone for him, and at times that creates inconsistency with his release point. With more coaching and refinement he’ll get more compact with his motion, which should help his accuracy. Martin also has to improve his decision making and timing, but the tools are special.
13. AJ Duffy
Vitals: 6'2", 205 pounds
School: Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy
Committed To: Florida State
2019 Stats: 2,568 passing yards, 70.9%, 26 TD, 7 INT - 501 rush yards, 4 TD
Duffy is the opposite of Martin. While he lacks the elite physical tools or elite size teams look for in a top-level quarterback, Duffy makes up for it with an impressive all-around game. His game should take off even more as a senior at IMG Academy.
Duffy is a sound and efficient quarterback that makes good decisions and shows an impressive feel for the game. His accuracy numbers are certainly impressive, but beyond just completion percentage the Florida State commit understands ball placement at a level you don’t often expect to see on sophomore film. Duffy has a very short, clean delivery that allows him to get the ball out in a hurry, which adds to his ability to complete passes at a high level.
Although he doesn’t possess a huge arm, Duffy is willing to attack down the field and he shows good over the top touch. He’s a quality athlete that can do damage on scrambles and as a designed runner. Duffy plays with a lot of confidence and his combination of decision-making, accuracy and running ability is a perfect fit for the FSU offense.
14. Katin Houser
Vitals: 6'3", 200 pounds
School: Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco
Committed To: Michigan State
2020 Stats: 659 passing yards, 63.1%, 7 TD - 107 rush yards, 1 TD (6 games)
Houser is another talented but raw and inexperienced West Coast quarterback whose junior season was limited by the pandemic. Like Martin this is a projection ranking, but the potential here is impressive. After getting a taste of big-time football as a junior at St. John Bosco, getting a full season against that schedule should help Houser grow up in a hurry.
Houser has a lot of tools to work with, including a strong arm and an impressive frame. Houser can power the ball deep down the field, and he can do so with far more velocity than most. He shows touch when he needs to and Houser throws well on the run. His ability to make plays with his legs when things break down and on designed runs.
His willingness to attack tight windows, and the arm strength to pull it off, is something that stands out with Houser. His ball placement and consistency from both an accuracy and decision making standpoint need work, and he obviously lacks experience, but expect his game to take a big jump as a senior.
15. Steve Angeli
Vitals: 6'3", 215 pounds
School: Oradell (N.J.) Bergen Catholic
Committed To: Notre Dame
2020 Stats: 919 passing yards, 59.1%, 6 TD, 3 INT (6 games)
Angeli has a nice frame and body, checking in at 6-3 and 215 pounds. He certainly has the look of a pro-style, next-level quarterback, and he's a tough quarterback that is willing to stand in the pocket and take a hit if it means getting off a throw.
I like Angeli's footwork in the pocket, and he shows a good feel for his surroundings, and he shows the ability to avoid the rush, maneuver in the pocket and then get a throw off. Angeli has a nice, clean throwing motion. He carries the ball well, can quickly get into his throwing motion and he has a relatively compact motion. He's a true pocket passer in that he's not really a guy who will throw off platform, but if you can keep him in the pocket he'll be able to do damage.
Angeli has good arm strength but his release is erratic and he goes through bouts where his ball placement is erratic. He’ll need to get stronger and learn to throw with more zip on downfield throws. He’s athletic enough to move the chains if things break down but that won’t be a big part of his game.