1) Joe Burrow, LSU; Ht: 6-4 Wt: 216
Heisman. Single season touchdown record. Third most yards all time in a single season. National champion. What else do you want? Joe Burrow put on possibly the best single season performance of all time and there’s little indication that he’s done. He’s got great size, determination, big stage experience, and he captivated the nation. There are no real flaws in his game and he should translate to the next level effortlessly.
2) Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama; Ht: 6-1 Wt: 218
It’s possible that Tua could have rivalled Burrow’s performance this season had he stayed healthy. Before his first injury, Tua was on pace for a ridiculous 67 touchdowns and 5,000 passing yards. With his receivers he probably could have gotten it done. But there are some issues. Durability has been an issue for Tua for his whole career and the multiple surgeries on his lower body are cause for warranted concern. Another concern that isn’t as legitimate is whether he can operate with tools that are lesser than Alabama’s. Alabama fielded NFL talent all over the offense so it’s fair to wonder that if Tua ends up in Miami or another similar situation, will he be able to elevate those around him?
3) Justin Herbert, Oregon; Ht: 6-6 Wt: 237
Herbert could have left Oregon for the draft, but preferred to stay in Eugene to finish his degree and hone his skills. It was a big gamble but it paid off for him as every single one of his passing stats improved. Herbert’s height will have John Elway drooling, but he’ll have every GM keeping a close eye with his vision and technical abilities. His third down and long ball numbers were great and his decision-making process showed NFL intelligence. With all the teams needing quarterbacks, Herbert will likely see himself in the top-10 picks.
4) Jacob Eason, Washington; Ht: 6-6 Wt: 227
Jacob Eason made a tough decision to leave Georgia and move across the country to Washington. However, like Herbert, it paid off in a big way. Eason took advantage of a balanced offense by showcasing his accuracy and mobility. Eason rarely missed open throws and was great on anticipation routes. He made quick decisions to bail on covered routes and move on to check-downs. He was accurate on all three levels and diced up zone coverage, especially past 10 yards. Eason’s combination of size, mobility, and vision supplies all the tools of a very good NFL quarterback and a good coach will be able to maximize his output.
5) Jordan Love, Utah State; Ht: 6-4 Wt: 225
Jordan Love actually regressed a bit this season compared to his 2018 campaign. Most of his passing stats were considerably worse, but that doesn’t mean he can’t return to his old self. Love has a 32:6 touchdown to interception ratio in 2018 compared to 20:17 in 2019. The main reason for that was trying too hard to make plays. He forced throws into double and triple coverage, he didn’t always take time to set his feet, and he didn’t want to bail on target routes that were covered. These are all issues that can be corrected easily and bring his numbers back up. My biggest concern was accuracy to the outer thirds of the field as many of his out routes were over or under-thrown. When he got the distance right, he displayed great touch. Love has the ability to end up as a top three quarterback in this draft if he can refrain from forcing plays.
6) Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma; Ht: 6-2 Wt: 218
Jalen Hurts produced a very interesting season as the starter at Oklahoma. The Sooners obviously had a great season and Hurts was at the nucleus of that as a Heisman candidate. His 52 total touchdowns powered one of the best offenses in the country and his running ability at the position was nearly unrivaled. However, I did find a few issues with his game. Hurts got lucky a lot, and while I know that luck is generally a byproduct of skill, but throwing into triple coverage and having the defensive backs essentially act out a Three Stooges skit isn’t exactly skill. On a similar note, when Hurts scrambled he often got out of situations that he won’t get out of in the NFL. He needs to use his running ability to feel the pocket a bit better and escape while he still can. His playstyle reminded me a lot of Josh Allen, but Hurts is a better passer on the run. It will be interesting to see how the NFL tries to utilize his skill.
7) Jake Fromm, Georgia; Ht: 6-2 Wt: 220
Jake Fromm struggled a lot this season and it was a particularly curious thing given just how incredible his offensive line and running back played. There were some things that I really liked despite those struggles, however. Fromm flashed great deep ball accuracy at times, displayed a deep understanding of how to beat defenses, and had great accuracy when he set his feet. However the issues that I had with Froom’s game far outweigh the pros. Fromm struggled to hit moving targets; his best work was done on hooks and other similar routes. He stares down his routes and struggles mightily under pressure, not always knowing when to throw the ball away. His arm skills are concerning but playing with such poor receivers against a very difficult schedule could be hiding some of his talent.
8) Anthony Gordon, Washington State; Ht: 6-3 Wt: 210
It’s always fair to be skeptical when a Mike Leach quarterback enters the draft due to the incredible inflation that the air raid produces. I’ll start with the cons for Gordon since there were very few. At times Gordon played very loosely and casually. That alone isn’t a con and might even be a good sign, but it bled into his decision-making at times. Sometimes he wouldn’t take the time to read the defense and would just throw into coverage, but that’s just about all I saw. Gordon’s passing ability is incredible and he’s accurate to all areas of the field. His arm can drop to any angle to complete a pass much like Matthew Stafford will. However one of the best things that I saw Gordon do over the course of the season was his ability to make passes catchable. It seemed like there wasn’t a pass that he couldn’t put on the hands of his receivers. His system just scares me and will scare many organizations who need a passer.
9) Steven Montez, Colorado; Ht: 6-5 Wt: 230
Steven Montez didn’t post incredible numbers this season and it was actually a bit of a disappointment that he didn’t perform better. He passed very well when he was given the time and was surprisingly accurate while rolling out, but otherwise his performance indicated many issues. Montez forced a lot of balls that simply didn’t need to be thrown. This reckless mindset contributed to his low touchdown totals. Montez rarely took the opportunity to set his feet despite having the time and as a result he missed a lot of easy passes. He heaved dangerous ball after dangerous ball and that decision-making won’t sit well with many coaches. At least he didn’t take many sacks, right?
10) James Morgan, FAU; Ht: 6-4 Wt: 213
The pros and cons for James Morgan are just about equal To be fair to him, he played as FAU and didn’t have the quality of receivers that most of the other quarterbacks enjoyed. He saw a lot of good passes dropped. But that being said, there are still some issues that need to be fixed. Throwing the ball as hard as you can on every throw is going to destroy your arm and it’s going to make life difficult for you slot receivers. Take it easy, man. Next, Morgan didn’t move very well when flushed from the pocket, which doesn’t bode well for a player that flat out misses some throws. His sub-60% accuracy was problematic. Finally, he was reckless on deep balls. If it was questionable as to whether he should throw it, more often than not he was sending it; his analysis will need to be better. But there were some really good things about Morgan as well. He passed very well under 15 yards, especially on digs and crossing routes. His throwing motion was very pure and won’t need any work (other than convincing him he’s not going for speed). He also displayed great touch around the goal line and that touch should be able to be coached up to help on other passes. Morgan doesn’t have the ceiling of most of the guys on this list, but it’s not probable that he’ll be terrible.