Experts assess QB's chances of going from D-III to the pros - Page 2
Mike Mayock, analyst for the NFL Network:
”(He’s a ) big strong kid with a good arm. Where he needs to improve is processing information. He is a kid who has some basic, tangible abilities. He’ll be in somebody’s camp. He has to show he can absorb a playbook and speed his play up.
“It’s not the mental side (that’s a problem). Trust me. He’s on the radar. The combine is important to him, not just on the field but in the meetings at night, when he gets up and talks about what he knows.”
Gil Brandt, NFL.com analyst:
”Here’s what I’ve seen of him. There’s a lot of difference when you are playing Alfred and Ithaca than when you are playing in the National Football League. There aren’t too many players who will end up in the National Football League that he played against.
“But the guy is a good athlete. He has an unbelievable arm. I’m looking forward to seeing him next week. It’s all going to depend upon what he does there. All of a sudden a lot of guys are going to find out where Hartwick is who have never been there before.”
Mel Kiper, ESPN draft analyst:
”I think it’s feasible if you have great workouts. He has size. What you have to do is catch the eye during workouts and do something physically to get their attention. It has to be something spectacular that happens in the next couple of months to catch the eyes of an offensive coordinator or coach.
“He has some skills. But there are a lot of kids who are in that mold. There are seven or eight kids from a lower level of competition with a chance to get to a camp. It’s a long shot. You are more than likely talking about an undrafted free agent.”
John Fricke, Fox Sports NFL radio host:
”The position he’s in is kind of nice, depending upon how he impresses at the combine. He’s got the basic structure people in the NFL are looking for. And he strikes me as being a pretty intelligent kid. If he turns heads at the combine, he might get drafted.
Having said that, I don’t know that getting drafted is a good thing for him, especially if he gets drafted in the later rounds. If you are him, it is better to have the option of going to certain camps. He could identify a place or two that would be a good fit. One might be Dallas. You have a quarterback there who is under fire. (Offensive coordinator) Jason Garrett is like he is, a really smart quarterback who went to a small school (Princeton).
“The assumption that he’s going to make this huge adjustment in the next six months is false. He has three or four years. In three or four years he will be an NFL quarterback or not. End of story.
“The D-III thing is irrelevant. It’s a huge step up for any quarterback. The distance between a D-I and D-III quarterback depends upon how smart he is. Ninety percent of playing quarterback is off the field. Guys who work at their craft, who learn to play QB (succeed). The way they (mess) with rookies is they play mind games with them on the field.”
Lindsay Kramer can be reached at 470-2151 or firstname.lastname@example.org