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SI 300 Rankings: QB

April 20, 2015
April 20, 2015

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April 20, 2015

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SI 300 Rankings: QB

Odds are, the next Tom Brady is in this bunch—but also a few Jake Lockers WITH 2014 STATS

This is an article from the April 20, 2015 issue

2 MARCUS MARIOTA

Oregon (6'4", 222 lbs.)

4,454 yards / 42 TDs / 4 INTs

PROS

Ran a heavy Pistol play-action offense, which translates better to NFL than some think. Tremendous thrower on the run; good mechanics when he's not pressured. Doesn't always bail at the first sign of trouble.

CONS

Will find a tougher go in the NFL when first read isn't open. Faces steep learning curve with pro playbook.

NFL COMP

Aaron Rodgers

6 JAMEIS WINSTON

Florida State (6'4", 231 lbs.)

3,907 yards / 25 TDs / 18 INTs

PROS

Dynamite arm; ability to make every NFL throw, including deep-third verticals to opposite boundary. For a college QB, advanced understanding of routes, protections and Ds.

CONS

Functionally athletic but not a scrambler/runner per se; more of a pocket QB. Mechanics aren't consistent, and he can be labored with them at times.

NFL COMP

Jay Cutler

54 BRETT HUNDLEY

UCLA (6'3", 226 LBS.)

3,155 yards / 22 TDs / 5 INTs

PROS

Well-built dual threat with legitimate breakaway speed. Possesses many traits that could eventually lead to NFL success.

CONS

The mistake would be in assuming that he can be a pro starter right away. Tends to lock on to first WR; telegraphs reads. Will struggle with turnovers at next level.

NFL COMP

Colin Kaepernick

99 BRYCE PETTY

Baylor (6'3", 230 lbs.)

3,855 yards / 29 TDs / 7 INTs

PROS

Tough, competitive leader. Throws in rhythm with quick release. Has arm strength to make throws to all parts of the field.

CONS

Played in spread O. Struggled if first read wasn't available. Accuracy fell off with defenders at his feet.

NFL COMP

Derek Carr

129 GARRETT GRAYSON

Colo. State (6'2", 213 lbs.)

4,006 yards / 32 TDs / 7 INTs

PROS

Mountain West Offensive POY throws a great deep ball; showed confidence under duress and in the clutch.

CONS

Slow release, which could prove problematic against NFL pass rushes. Mechanics falter when flushed from the pocket. He's no rushing threat.

NFL COMP

Ryan Fitzpatrick

140 SEAN MANNION

Oregon State (6'6", 229 lbs.)

3,164 yards / 15 TDs / 8 INTs

PROS

Pure pocket passer with an impressive build and ability to make any throw. Very good at throwing his receivers open on deep balls.

CONS

Falls apart under pressure. Looks like a rock star when he's protected but completely lost when things don't go as planned. If he's on the run, his accuracy takes a nosedive.

NFL COMP

Zach Mettenberger

196 BRANDON BRIDGE

SOUTH ALABAMA (6'4", 229 LBS.)

1,927 yards / 15 TDs / 8 INTs

PROS

Great arm strength; solid deep-ball threat. Shows patience in the pocket but can extend plays and throw off the run if necessary.

CONS

Needs to be more accurate: completed just over 50% of his passes. Lacks experience against top-tier Ds.

NFL COMP

Ben Roethlisberger

226 CONNOR HALLIDAY

Wash. State (6'3", 196 lbs.)

3,873 yards / 32 TDs / 11 INTs

PROS

Excels at deep balls dropped over a secondary. Played through a lacerated liver; endured a coaching change, a lot of losing and some terrible O-line play. So toughness is not a concern.

CONS

Mike Leach pupils haven't often succeeded outside the pass-crazed systems they rode to prominence in college.

NFL COMP

Jeff Tuel

236 CODY FAJARDO

NEVADA (6'1", 223 LBS.)

2,498 yards / 18 TDs / 11 INTs

PROS

Smooth release. Great athlete—one of the best at the combine for the position. Tough kid; will take hits. Good timing on back-shoulder fade.

CONS

Played in Pistol O; will have to adjust to NFL offense. Doesn't have a big arm.

NFL COMP

Geno Smith

239 TAYLOR HEINICKE

Old Dominion (6'1", 213 lbs.)

3,476 yards / 30 TDs / 16 INTs

PROS

Precise on short and midrange passes. ODU's offense was built on his making quick reads, which he did well. Can throw on the run; doesn't panic under pressure.

CONS

Monarchs mostly ran one-read plays from a spread offense; he faces a huge transition to the NFL. Lacks arm strength to deliver deep balls.

NFL COMP

Chase Daniel

245 SHANE CARDEN

East Carolina (6'2", 218 lbs.)

4,736 yards / 30 TDs / 10 INTs

PROS

Able to keep his eyes downfield in the midst of pressure and then sling it deep. Athletic enough to make things happen with his feet and make throws on the run. Not afraid to go to covered WRs; able to make tight-window throws.

CONS

Tends to play frenetically and struggles getting enough on his sideline throws. Has to learn to cycle through and read coverages.

NFL COMP

Thad Lewis

269 BRYAN BENNETT

SE Louisiana (6'2", 211 lbs.)

2,357 yards / 18 TDs / 8 INTs

PROS

Lightning-quick release when he needs it. Athletic; can move and scramble. Can make drive throws to middle of the field.

CONS

Doesn't spin the ball as well as you'd like. Struggles to make throws when moved off his spot. Pressure him and it's over. Deep ball is a problem.

NFL COMP

Josh McCown

271 JERRY LOVELOCKE

Prairie View A&M (6'4", 248 lbs.)

2,473 yards / 16 TDs / 9 INTs

PROS

Has an NFL frame and a big arm that is best used fitting passes into tight windows over the middle. Showed the ability to improvise and get throws off in an imperfect pocket.

CONS

His 4.99 40 time at the combine underscores the concern that his impressive rushing stats were helped significantly by inferior competition and the deception of his team's zone-read O. Struggles with touch and consistent placement on deep balls.

NFL COMP

Logan Thomas

297 BLAKE SIMS

Alabama (5'11", 218 lbs.)

3,487 yards / 28 TDs / 10 INTs

PROS

Smooth throwing motion; dynamic in the open field. Can make all the throws, despite lacking a huge arm. Good on his feet; at times seems impossible to bring down in the pocket. Great body control; takes care of the ball.

CONS

Tends to stare down WRs. Balls get batted at line due to his height, arm angle. Likely not a starter.

NFL COMP

Colt McCoy

2014 FBS passer rating leader

MARCUS MARIOTA 181.7

Top 40 time at combine

MARIOTA 4.52

SCOUTING BY

Colin Becht, Peter Bukowski, Chris Burke, Ben Eagle, Zac Ellis, Doug Farrar, Ben Glicksman, Bette Marston, Aaron Nagler, Amy Parlapiano, Andrew Perloff and Eric Single

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