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Evaluating QB's

Discussion in 'NFL Draft Forum' started by Galant, Oct 3, 2019.

  1. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member

    Apr 22, 2014
    The holy grail of NFL drafting. The ability to accurately predict NFL success for QB's based on what you see in college and the traits and performance on display.

    Listen to any sports talk show, draft analysis or other content provider and you'll hear talk about:

    Arm Strength/Throwing with Zip/Big Arm
    Makes all the throws
    Pocket Presence
    Decision Making
    Size/Prototypical Size

    There's always a lot of confidence when you hear analysts talking, but the fact remains that great quarterbacks continue to get missed in the first rounds and other guys taken high in the draft flame or fizzle out. If they really had it down - if anyone can 'have it down' - that wouldn't happen, except for very few exceptional cases.

    Another year and another round of college QB evaluation - now with Tua, Herbert, Fromm, Burrow, Hurts etc.

    One area I've been thinking about is the mental side of the position. The physical traits are easy enough to evaluate, it seems to be the mental processing/decision-making etc that makes the difference.

    Now, 'mental processing' is a bit of an umbrella term. There are different sorts of intelligence and different minds work in different ways. There could be a conversation about logical thinkers versus more intuitive or instinctive thinkers etc. and while it may be possible to look at how a QB is doing in school to get an idea of academic/book type intelligence, that's not necessarily the same thing, and ultimately, I don't think the methods of evaluation are in place to evaluate this sort of thing at all. Might be an interesting avenue of investigation though.

    Nevertheless, the question of evaluating the mental side of quarterbacking, I think remains a key aspect that needs greater consideration. Perhaps that's obvious and the less obvious question is, how to do that. It seems most evaluation of these mental traits is done, at least by the online analysts, by watching tape and attempting to what where the QB looks, what he seems to be seeing, and how he reacts to the defense. Obviously, there are issues with that, but there may not be much else that can be done.

    Either way, it's what we've got right now. It might be interesting to consider whether some combine tests could be added to test the mind somehow, it would at least make sense to want to do so, but that's not around right now.

    So, just knowing what we know, looking at the current batch of CBF QB's, which one's do you think are mentally strong and have good traits, and which don't? Or do you think elite physical traits are what matters most?

    A few blogs with some interesting looks into evaluating QB's from both statistics and tape evaluation are:



    Surfs Up 99 likes this.
  2. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member

    Apr 22, 2014
    For my part, Jake Fromm might be the most intriguing QB in terms of mental prowess. He is, arguably, the QB who's doing the most with the least impressive physical traits. Does that bode well for him - or does he simply lack sufficient physical gifts to succeed in the NFL?

    Herbert is the biggest concern for me because of his impressive physical traits. Does he scream bust because he's a strong guy but lacking in terms of the mental processing side of the game?

    Those two might be polar opposites.

    I've not looked into Love, Eason or Hurts enough to have an opinion on them yet. Burrow - I'm starting to watch, and I think he may be showing some solid football thinking.

    As for Tua - the big knock on him last year was that the Alabama offense was simplistic and he wasn't making smart choices. That's changed somewhat this year, he's making better decisions, but how much is that him, and how much is just the coach telling him what to do? Does he have a mind strong enough to keep up with NFL defences and break things down at that level? If he does, then he continues to sit atop the pile, I think. If not, that could be a big problem.
  3. AGuyNamedAlex

    AGuyNamedAlex Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2015
    I'm mainly interested in their performances vs teams of a similar caliber or higher to their own.

    Also mainly interested in their games against top defensive units as well as their performance in close/late games.

    Mostly anyone can look great on a team that is 100x more talented and with all day to throw.
    pumpdogs likes this.
  4. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member

    Apr 22, 2014

    Instead of stats these guys are talking almost exclusively about character rather than skills...


  5. rafael

    rafael Season Ticket Holder Club Member

    Apr 6, 2008
    I think it definitely makes sense at the college level. But to make it to the next level especially as an elite QB you need those character traits along with some elite physical skills. I think you can get away with less accuracy and less arm strength and lesser ability to extend plays, really less everything than you need to win at the highest level.

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