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Scouting The Draft: Bryce Petty, QB, Baylor

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We're sticking with the QB's this week as we work through some of the prospects heading to the 2015 NFL Draft.

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Introduction

Bryce Petty faces the same questions many quarterbacks face coming out of college these days, can you translate your skill-set from a spread first read offense like the one at Baylor to the pro-style, progression timing offense you'll likely be asked to play in the NFL. After an up and down practise in Mobile, Alabama for the senior bowl this year, Petty will face some tough questions in Indianapolis where he plans to throw at the combine. I have a lot of respect for QB's who want to go out there and compete at every opportunity, so while it may make sense for some players to skip the Senior Bowl and skip certain aspects of the combine, I always take a mental note of the guys who want to compete.

Petty's journey to become Baylors starting quarterback was anything but an easy route. Coming out of Midlothian, Texas where high school football is a religion, he originally committed to Tennessee. However after a coaching change there, the Volunteers ran a little hot and cold on Petty as well as Taj Boyd the former Jet who eventually played his football at Clemson. As a result he re-opened his recruiting options and signed on with Baylor.

However he needed to grey shirt before he was able to redshirt his freshman year. So for those who are not familiar with that term, a grey shirt is when you postpone your enrollment at the school until the 2nd term of your freshman year. As a result he had to keep himself in shape by working out in his home town. When he got to Baylor he redshirted his freshman year and then backed up Robert Griffin III before becoming the full-time starter in 2013.

Petty certainly doesn't lack confidence. While at the Senior Bowl he described himself as the top quarterback in the draft. Not in a cocky or arrogant way but in a way that says "I have confidence in myself" and I respect that, he admitted that he has a learning curve ahead of him but he's confident that he could learn an NFL play-book, calling his own protections and identifying post snap reads.

Measurables

Height: 6'3

Weight: 230lb's

Class: Senior

Projected 40: 4.6

Statistics

Year Games Played Attempted Completed Completion % Yards TD's INT's
2011 5 4 3 75% 43 0 0
2012 6 10 7 70% 97 1 0
2013 12 356 220 61.8% 3,844 30 2
2014 12 428 270 63.1% 3,855 29 7

Positives

  • Has enjoyed two excellent years in terms of production with a strong Baylor air attack.
  • A very strong work ethic with excellent leadership skills and cuts a respected figure.
  • Film room, one of the first in and one of the last to leave. You like to see that in your QB.
  • Good size, bulk and sped for a quarterback, not elite in any, but above average in all.
  • Changes his release point from 3/4's to side arm on a consistent basis to avoid pressure.
  • Slides and climbs the pocket quite well to avoid most pressure.
  • Quick, sharp release.
  • Has the ability to extend plays and pick up a first down with his legs.
  • Does show ability to deliver the ball with plenty of zip.
  • Knows how to manipulate coverages with use of his eyes, holding safeties to one side.
  • Not afraid to take a hit when delivering the football, excellent toughness.

Negatives

  • Comes from a spread offense so there is a question about him adapting to the NFL.
  • Takes snaps exclusively from the shotgun meaning his lower mechanics and feet are poor.
  • His release is a 3/4 release and there have been some batted balls in college.
  • Very much a one read QB who only rarely has to work through progressions.
  • Works 1/2 of the field and will need to learn to see the whole field at the next level.
  • Doesn't feel back-side pressure very well and takes some poor sacks as a result.
  • Throws some footballs into areas he really shouldn't, needs to improve decision making.
  • Only average arm-strength when trying to stretch the field, can't put air under the ball.
  • Doesn't always spot the ball well well, forcing receivers to make adjustments.
  • Needs to feel the pressure and keep his eyes downfield, very inconsistent here.

Conclusion


I'm still very undecided on Petty and his pro potential. I see a lot of things on tape that I really don't like but then I see some things I love and I love his work ethic and you know the saying "Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard". He has a steep learning curve for the NFL but a part of me really thinks he'll do it because he believes he can and he'll work his socks off for it. However I certainly don't think he's the best quarterback in the draft and I think he'll struggle early before finding his role. There are too many negatives for me to really buy into his NFL potential but write him off at your peril, if he lands with a good coach on a team willing to develop him, he could be very good.

Draft Grade: 68

90-100 = Exceptional Talent

80-90 = Impact Player

70-80 = NFL Starter

60-70 = Solid NFL Potential

50-60 = Draftable - Lot of work needed

>50 = Undraftable, - Long Shot To Stick