USA TODAY Sports
The NFL combine has come and gone, there were big stories, there were little stories - some worked out, some didn't and now we have to review what we saw and what it all means. So here is my positional review based on combine performance for the Quarterbacks.
I'm still not sure if we will take a Quarterback this year, it'll all revolve around who's there. If Geno is there at #9 do we take him? with the Chiefs trading for Alex Smith, if Arizona and Buffalo decide to go in another direction there is a chance Geno will be there. He's certainly the only Quarterback I would consider taking in the 1st round. Then the question is do you take a Quarterback like Barkley or Glennon if they are there in the 2nd round, how about Wilson or Nassib if they are there in the 3rd, how about Tyler Bray in the 4th round if others are scared off by his immaturity and Ryan Leaf mental make-up?
There are a lot of possibilities with the Jets, for me I'd take Geno at 9 if he was there and if he isn't I wouldn't take a QB at all. I'd roll with Garrard this year, get Sanchez off the books next year and do all I could to land one of the top QB's in the 2014 class - i may be tempted to take a late round QB like Matt Scott of Arizona, but I wouldn't want a middle of the road guy who's only ever just going to be quite good, because of this I'm personally avoiding the likes of Wilson, Nassib, Glennon and Bray.
It's a position that generates more discussion than any other. So who helped their stock in Indy? and who didn't?
40 Yard Dash - Top Performances
1- Geno Smith, 4.59 (West Virginia)
2- EJ Manuel, 4.65 (Florida State)
3- Matt Scott, 4.69 (Arizona)
4- Marqueis Gray, 4.73 (Minnesota)
5- Colby Cameron, 4.78 (Louisiana Tech)
Other notables: Mike Glennon, 4.94 (North Carolina State), Tyler Wilson, 4.95 (Arkansas), Tyler Bray, 5.05 (Tennessee), Ryan Nassib, 5.06 (Syracuse), Landry Jones, 5.11 (Oklahoma)
I don't think there are any real surprises here, Geno ran the same 40 time as Cam Newton and looked to have some real good initial burst. We all know that E.J Manuel is a very athletic quarterback. Glennon, Wilson, Bray all around where I expected, Nassib was a little slower than I thought he would be and Landry Jones is purely a pocket guy. In the NFL being able to extend plays is becoming all the more valuable, as defensive ends and linebackers get more athletic, QB's need to be able to make some moves outside the pocket.
There were no real surprises in the other drills, Nassib showed very little athletic ability in the 20 yard shuttle and the 3 cone drill - testing among the worst. I thought he had a little more fluidity to his game than he showed in Indy. Geno had a great broad jump at 10'4". EJ Manuel had an explosive vertical at 34". It was really EJ and Geno who tested the best among highly valued QB's.
Geno Smith was by far the most impressive in the drills on the field, he looked good throwing the short and intermediate routes and showed a great deal of touch on those long down field passes. Smooth mechanically and just looked the most comfortable. EJ Manuel again looked good, showed a lot of arm strength - little accuracy issues on the down field passes. The strongest arm belonged to Tyler Bray, his accuracy was poor in college and his maturity issues are a real concern but he can thrown the ball 70 yards through the air without trying, everyone knew he had a rocket arm though, his draft stock will be decided in the interview room.
Barkley obviously didn't throw because of his shoulder and his pro day will be vital for him. Mike Glennon had a rocket arm but as always with him, his accuracy was a major concern. It doesn't matter how hard or far you can throw it if it's not landing on target. I was actually quite impressed with the work that Tyler Wilson put in, he certainly showed a lot more arm strength than I saw while he was at Arkansas, but again he had some accuracy issues - especially on the shorter out throws.
If you look at all the top performers then Matt Scott of Arizona will jump out at you. He is a great athlete but he has some issues in terms of mechanics and consistency. I watched him a few time in Rich Rodriguez's spread attack system and he was impressive. This year he threw 27 touchdowns to 5 interceptions with over 60% completion and added over 500 yards and six scores on the ground. He has concerns at the next level but as a late round prospect - some team who has time to develop a guy might get a steal