July 22, 2012

REDONDO BEACH, Calif. -- The Elite 11 action slowed down a bit on Friday and Saturday with 7-on-7 sessions for each quarterback, gauging their ability to read defenses, see the field, go through progressions and make good decisions. While each signal-caller only threw eight balls each day, between that and the fast early start, a top 11 has emerged heading into the final on Sunday. The Rivals.com analysts rank them in order with a big surprise on top.

Note: This ranking is based on the on-field evaluation we have been able to access. This does not include the chalk talk, film breakdown or other portions the media does not have access to.

1. Asiantii Woulard, Winter Park (Fla.): Woulard's week started off on a bad note with a groin injury on Day 1, but since then he has been lights out. He is one of the most physically imposing quarterbacks at the event. The ball comes out fast and in a tight spiral and his decisiveness has very impressive. He makes his read and usually zips the ball where it needs to be with accuracy and he has checked down less than anyone. For a prospect still learning the position, he has been remarkable.

2. Shane Morris, Warren (Mich.) De La Salle: Morris has the strongest arm of the bunch by far and he's not afraid to use it. The ball comes out quickly and with a ton of zip, but he has also been showing more patience and touch and his long ball hasn't sailed on him as it has in the past. Morris still needs to see more of the field, but he is improving working across his body and he has been smart about checking down when needed. His physical upside is better than anyone else's at the event.

3. Max Browne, Sammamish (Wash.) Skyline: Browne is arguably the smartest and most patient of the quarterbacks when it comes to decision-making and not forcing the football. He is methodical in his approach, will not force the ball and his long ball is a thing of beauty with consistent accuracy and touch. He still has a high release point that needs to be sped up, but you can see the potential to be a surgeon at the next level in the passing game.

4. Christian Hackenberg, Fork Union (Va.) Fork Union Military: Hackenberg is right up there with Morris when it comes to physical gifts as a pocket passer. He is tall in the pocket, has a strong arm and a smooth release and he really came alive on Friday when it came to working against defenses and making progressions. He continued that on Saturday, although he still struggles at times with forcing the ball at times. Hackenberg needs more consistency but his upside is very impressive.

5. Malik Zaire, Kettering (Ohio) Archbishop Alter: Zaire is the smallest quarterback at the event, but he does everything well and his accuracy is very good. In a spread offense where he'll be throwing in lanes and the field will be open, he will be successful because he sees the field well, makes good decisions and throws a catchable ball that leads his receiver. However, his lack of size is really accentuated at this camp with so many bigger and taller quarterbacks, and that could hinder his long term NFL chances.

6. Kevin Olsen, Wayne (N.J.) Wayne Hills: Olsen is yet another big, strong pocket passer to make this list and his potential is easy to see. When he's on and balanced, he makes some very impressive throws and he can sling it and fit it into tight spots. He tends to overstride a bit, which can make his ball sail at times, but he's made many more good passes than poor ones. He is especially effective at throwing to the outside of the hashes and making some of the tougher throws for quarterbacks. His arm strength is very good and he gets the ball out quickly and he continues to fill out an imposing frame.

7. Jared Goff, Kentfield (Cal.) Marin Catholic: Goff is tall and thin with plenty of room to fill out. He has been one of the standouts when it comes to consistent release point and getting out quickly. He has had his ups and downs at times with his accuracy, but you have to like his upside because of his height, loose arm and ability to get the ball where it needs to be with some zip. For a taller prospect, he doesn't have an elongated release, which is important, and with some additional coaching you can see the potential to be a stat stuffer in the Pac-12 down the line.

8. Anthony Jennings, Marietta (Ga.): Jennings is very smooth in his drops, his footwork is excellent and his downfield vision is very good. He has a strong enough arm to make any throw and his accuracy down the seam and willingness to make throws into windows stood out. He's not the tallest quarterback, but he is thick and sturdy and well balanced at all times. When it comes to overall accuracy on downfield passes, Jennings is right up there among the best.

9. Troy Williams, Harbor City (Cal.) Narbonne: Williams is a very intriguing prospect because he has a whip-like release, always throws a tight, catchable spiral and gets the ball out very quickly. He's mostly arm right now, but he gets it where it needs to be, and once he begins to learn to use his legs more he has a chance to be special. He looks bigger than listed, as he is well-proportioned and he has a good frame to fill out. His decision-making has been solid and he hasn't made many mistakes.

10. Danny Etling, Terre Haute (Ind.) South Vigo: Etling has a three-quarter delivery and uses too much arm and not enough lower body right now, but he gets the ball out quickly despite the fundamental issues and he gets good pace on the football. Once he gets his mechanics tweaked at the next level, you can see he has the field vision, arm strength, accuracy and decisiveness to be a very effective quarterback.

11. Cooper Bateman, Salt Lake City (Utah) Cottonwood Senior: Bateman is a very athletic kid who has good feet, gets into his drops in rhythm and pace and he seems to do much better in 7-on-7 play than he does in 1-on-1s or routes on air. He has adequate arm strength, a smooth release and he doesn't force the ball showing the patience to take what is given to him most of the time. He won't wow you in any one aspect of his game, but he clearly has the potential to not only be a good game manager but also cool under pressure.

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