Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Scouting Report: John Brantley – QB - Florida

Scouting Report: John Brantley – QB - Florida

Size: 6-3, 220

                2009:   410 yards, 75 comp %, 8.54 ypa, 7 TD, 0 INT
                2010:  2061 yards, 60.8 comp %, 6.26 ypa, 9 TD, 10 INT

Strengths & Weaknesses:  Was a top recruit coming out of college. He has proto-typical size for an NFL QB and the arm to match. Brantley makes all the throws with ease and he shows great accuracy at all levels of the field. However he played in a hokey offense under Urban Meyer that never clicked with the loss of Tim Tebow. When the team ran pro-style sets Brantley excelled (see his sophomore tape when he came in relief of Tebow) when they didn’t he looked lost. He made terrible decisions and didn’t keep the ball safe at all and failed to move the ball against even the most weak of defenses. However He was taken on and off the field and relieved by slash players. He had QB’s lined up at tailback and WR’s who didn’t run proper routes. Brantley has managed to overcome that and show some flashes of brilliance, which is a lot more than most QB’s in his situation would do.

Impression: John Brantley has the skill set of a top ten pick, however he has yet to tap that potential because he has not been put in a position to properly show off his talents. With Charlie Weiss at the helm of the offense, and Will Muschamp running the defense look for Florida to surprise a lot of people this season and compete for a BCS Bowl. However they have a lot of athletes on their roster, not football players. It is going to take time for Weiss to establish a true pro-style offense. However if he can get it together quickly Brantley has a chance to make a Mark Sanchez type push up draft boards with only one real season of tape. (In this case one real season in a pro-style offense, an offense that Sanchez excelled in which rose his stock so high).  Remember Weiss tutored Tom Brady, Brady Quinn, Jimmy Clausen, and Matt Cassell. While two of those players haven’t had success at the NFL level (yet), they were drafted high because of their pedigree in a pro-style offense.

NFL Comparison: Mark Sanchez

Draft Status: Right now he is a middle round selection because while his production is spotty, he ran a weird offense and has the NFL size/intangibles to be tutored and succeed. However if Weiss gets that offense turned around quickly, which I believe he will, and Brantley is the catalyst, which I believe he will be, he could easily be sitting in Radio City Music Hall next April and have his name called in the first 10 picks.

Scouting Report: Brandon Weeden – QB – Oklahoma St.

Scouting Report: Brandon Weeden – QB – Oklahoma St.

Size: 6-5, 225

                2009:  248 yards, 62.5 comp %,  10.33 ypa,  4 TD,  1 INT
                2010:  4277 yards,  66.9 comp %,  8.37 ypa,  34 TD, 13 INT

Strengths:  Physically it is all there. Proto-typical height and weight of an NFL signal caller.  He spent 5 seasons in the minor leagues as a top prospect who garnered the full attention of elite-level strength and conditioning coaches. He also came out of the Yankees system, and has a wife and kids. Coaches won’t have any character concerns with him. His poise in the pocket, ability to read the defense and go through check downs, and his short area accuracy and deep touch is really what NFL scout’s like.

Weaknesses:  Only one year as a starter, will need to build upon his Junior campaign. Will be 28 in October, which will make him a 29 year old rookie who won’t hit his prime until the age of 32 or 33. While he has first round tools it will show and Andrew Luck-esque grasp of an offense to make him an elite prospect on team’s boards. That will be hard to prove running a spread offense and losing both his starting tailback who was an elite pass blocker in blitz pick-up, and his offensive coordinator.  He needs to show he has a stronger arm (a shoulder injury ended his baseball career) and that he can develop his footwork. Was his production a bi-product of being more mature than the talent around him?

Impression: To me he is an elite level prospect, best in the Big 12. However his age will plague him and it is what sinks him in my rankings. If he had chosen football out of high school I think he could have been a special talent. He will forever be a spot-starter/back-up and possibly have to test the CFL/AFL waters because NFL teams cannot build a franchise around him. There are exceptions (Kurt Warner) and I wouldn’t bet against him. However I think a lot of NFL teams will.

NFL Comparison: Kevin Kolb

Draft Status: Should be a 1st round pick, will probably go 4-7. Possibility he goes 2-3 but John Beck and Chris Weinke have set a bad precedent before him (Although he is a far superior prospect to the latter two).

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Scouting Report: Kirk Cousins - QB - Michigan St.


Scouting Report: Kirk Cousins – QB – Michigan St

Size: 6-3, 210

                2009: 2680 yards, 60.4 comp %, 8.17 ypa, 19 TD, 9 INT
                2010: 2825 yards, 66.9 comp %, 8.36 ypa, 20 TD, 10 INT

Strengths: Will be a 3 year starter in a pro-style offense when the 2012 draft rolls around which is a huge plus. He will impress at the combines and off-season work-outs with his maturity and leadership. Makes up for shaky accuracy with elite decision making, has only thrown 19 INT’s in 2 seasons. He stands tall and moves around confidently and instinctively in the pocket and has a very short and quick release. Kirk Cousins also demonstrates the ability to make all the NFL throws.  When needed, Cousins can put a great amount of zip on the ball, while also being able to exhibit touch on his deep ball. 

Weaknesses:  Has the height, and the frame to carry more weight but needs to show he can put on about 15 more pounds and hold it. He doesn’t possess elite accuracy at any level down the field. His biggest flaw is the fact that he stares down receivers, as he often goes to his first or second read almost instantly without scanning the field. 

Impression: He is never going to be the blue-chip QB prospect but the fact remains simple. If he can overcome the label he had as a game manager and get a big win over an elite defense (which he failed to do against Alabama) at least one team will fall in love with him enough to give him the first round grade he deserves.

NFL Comparison: Ryan Fitzpatrick/Drew Stanton

Draft Status: Fringe first round, early 2nd.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Scouting Report: Nick Foles - QB - Arizona

Scouting Report: Nick Foles – QB -  Arizona

Size: 6-5, 240

2009: 2,486 yards – 63.6 comp % - 6.08 ypa – 19 TD, 9 INT
2010: 3191 yards – 67.1 comp % - 7.49 ypa – 20 TD, 10 INT

Strengths: Foles has impressive size and athletic ability.  He possesses the arm strength to make all the NFL throws as well as good touch.  Foles has improved throughout his career and his development has fostered more and more wins for a once dormant Arizona program. NFL GM’s might like the fact that he has brought a program out of the basement and into the limelight a la Andrew Luck.  Despite playing in a spread system, Foles does a nice job going across the field with his progressions.  His calm pocket presence allows him to find the open target. Foles has the ability to be an accurate deep and intermediate passer.

Weaknesses:  Foles needs to make improvement to several parts of his game. He often delivers the ball behind his target. He really struggles with his short accuracy.  His footwork consistency is lacking as he has a narrow stance and throws with an open stance.

Impression: I have Foles 3rd amongst my senior QB’s due to the playmaking ability of Ryan Tannehill and the cerebral presence of Kirk Cousins. However many see him as a potential elite prospect who could challenge Andrew Luck as the top QB with an exceptional season. He has the NFL size, and arm however anyone who saw his bowl game last season knows he has a long way to go in reading defenses and not giving the ball to the defense.

NFL Comparison: Ben Roethlisburger

Draft Status: It’s tough to tell, I think when all is said and done he will be a better prospect than Blaine Gabbert. However the 2012 class is much deeper. If he had a stellar bowl performance last season and came out there is no doubt in my mind he could have been a top 5 pick after workouts. But in 2012 I’d say he is a 15-20 pick, Joe Flacco/Josh Freeman range. This is amazing seeing as he is better than Newton, Locker, Gabbert, and Ponder. Makes the Bills look smart that is for sure.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

2012 Quarterback Class.... Juniors and Seniors

This is more of a watch list than official rankings, but these are QB's all Bills fans should keep an eye on in the 2012 NCAA football season. Updates on their performances, and scouting reports will be coming in as the season progresses and concludes...


1.) Ryan Tannehill - Texas A&M
2.) Kirk Cousins - Michigan St.
3.) Nick Foles - Arizona
4.) Chandler Harnish - Northern Illinois
5.) Ryan Lindley - San Diego St.
6.) John Brantley - Florida
7.) BJ Coleman - Tennessee Chattanooga
8.) Brandon Weeden - Oklahoma St.
9.) Kellen Moore - Boise St.
10.) Dominique Davis - ECU
11.)  GJ Kinne - Tulsa
12.)  Case Keenum - Houston

Keep an eye out for...

Russell Wilson - Wisconsin???
Zach Collaros - Cincinnati (Can he regain his Frosh form when he looked like the next Colt McCoy?)
Tyler Lantrip - Nevada (Can he fill Kaepernicks shoes and flash an NFL game? He has the arm)
Aaron Corp - Richmond (Onetime USC starter)
Matt Scott - Arizona (Best backup in NCAA, plays well in flashes. Will he redshirt? Small frame)
Jordan Jefferson - LSU (Streaky SEC signal caller)
Austin Davis - Southern Miss (Former Manning Award Watch finalist)
Joe Bauserman - Ohio St. (Older, can he impress in relief of Pryor to start season?)
Alex Tanney - Monmouth (Best D3 QB, coming off of season ending injury, NFL Size)
Brian Reader - Idaho
Nick Stephens - Tarleton State
Dayne Crist - Notre Dame


1.) Andrew Luck - Stanford
2.) Landry Jones - Oklahoma
3.) Matt Barkley - USC
4.) Jeff Tuel - Wasshington St.
5.) Tyler Wilson - Arkansas
6.) Mike Glennon - NC State
7.) EJ Manuel - Florida St.
8.)Robert Griffin - Baylor
9.) Brock Osweiler - Arizona St.
10.) Marqueiss Gray - Minnesota
11.) Ryan Katz - Oregon St.
12.) Geno Smith - West Virginia

Sophomores to Watch...

1.) Tyler Bray - Tennessee
2.) Logan Thomas - Virginia Tech
3.) Aaron Murray - Georgia
4.) Danny O'Brien - Maryland
5.) James Franklin - Missouri
6.) Pete Thomas - Colorado St.
7.) AJ McCarron - Alabama
8.) Jake Heaps - BYU
9.) Tajh Boyd - Clemson
10.) Tommy Rees - Notre Dame / Stephen Morris - Miami

Nick Foles Quarterback Nick Foles #8 of the Arizona Wildcats throews a pass against the Oregon Ducks  on November 26, 2010 at the Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Oregon.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

2011-2012 Buffalo Bills Outlook…. Quarterback

Ryan Fitzpatrick – #14 - (23 TD’s 15 INT 3,000 Yards)

The Buffalo Bills have a solid presence a top their depth chart for the first time since Drew Bledsoe. An unquestionable leader of men who may not have the greatest arm, or the prototypical NFL skill set but isn’t afraid to stick the football into tight openings and get the ball into the end zone. Fitzpatrick might not be the guy the Buffalo Bills can win a Super Bowl with but it isn’t out of the realm of possibility he could lead them to, and win playoff games. That is why Buddy Nix and Co. decided to pass on a QB in this past April’s draft, focusing instead on re-building the defense.

Levi Brown - #10 – 1 INT, 24 yards

It would appear Buddy Nix doesn’t have much faith in this young signal caller. Although this big armed, small school system QB with prototypical NFL build flashed the strongest arm in last year’s training camp he was cut following a lackluster pre-season and not offered a spot on the practice squad. He showed his immaturity calling out the team via his twitter but was eventually re-signed to the active roster when Trent Edwards was released. He saw action in the season finale against the Jets, looking solid on his first two throws making completions for a total of 24 yards before throwing an ugly interception on his final attempt.


Look for the Bills to bring in a veteran signal caller who can step in for an injured Fitzpatrick and win games. Buddy Nix has also confirmed a 4th quarterback will be added to the roster as a “camp arm” to compete with Brown. The 4th QB added will be an Indicator of the Bills confidence in Brown. If a bigger (if you can say that about an UDFA) name like Devlin or Weber are added it shows the Bills are not sold on Levi as their “project” and he will have to earn his keep. If a lesser name like Trevor Vittatoe is added it would indicate a confidence in Brown as a player like that would not make an NFL roster, at least not in 2012.

5 Free Agents the Bills should pursue…

1.)    Bruce Gradkowski  - The injury plagued QB is much like Fitz, he doesn’t offer up a true NFL skill set but he just flat out wins games. Would be a very capable back-up.
2.)    Drew Stanton – This player is just hitting is peak. He led Detroit on a great end of the season run and might just be the one guy who could push Fitz to be the Bills 2012 starter.
3.)    Tyler Thigpen – Played under Gailey in KC with success. Will probably take a trade with division rival Mia since he is a RFA, but many believe this is already a done deal.
4.)    Tarvaris Jackson – An athletic QB who has played well in the past, but just hasn’t put it all together. More of a project than capable back-up.
5.)    Dennis Dixon – As a RFA Dixon is a swing for the fences type player as the Bills would most likely have to invest a lot to get him, and make him a part of their future plans. With a deep 2012 crop of QB’s that looks unlikely.

Other options…
                Luke McCown
                Rex Grossman
                Troy Smith
                Billy Volek
                Kyle Boller
                Kellen Clemens
                Brodie Croyle
                Matt Moore

Undrafted free agents…

1.)    Pat Devlin – Deleware - Lacks a great arm and as of now it's not good enough to make all the throws. But, he does a great job working his eyes and going through his progressions and is accurate with the football. In the right system and environment could develop with some time if he continues to strength his wrist/arm.
2.)    Adam Weber – Minnesota – Has idela NFL size and an NFL arm but never really put it all together in college. This guy could be the front runner at One Bills Drive as the Bills closely monitored Minnesota’s Pro Day. I thought he would have been the pick at the end of round 7, and he very well could have been with no lockout had Buffalo believed they could have gotten Jasper right away in UDFA.
3.)    Adam Froman – Lousville – A relative unknown, never started a full season but had impressive numbers. Wowed scouts at his pro-day. He has physical skills, sound fundamentals and passing talent that make him to good to pass up as a flyer prospect.
4.)    Trevor Vittatoe – UTEP - A natural thrower of the football who can make all the throws. However, is still learning how to become a quarterback and his limited mobility this year displayed just how far he has to come to be an efficient pocket passer.
5.)    Scott Tolzien – Wisconsin - A tough college quarterback who has the grit and toughness to help move the chains from time to time, but isn't a legit NFL quarterback prospect.
6.)    Ben Chapell – Indiana
7.)    Josh Portis - Cal (PA)
8.)    Jerrod Johnson – Texas A&M
9.)    Mitch Mustain – USC
10.) Jeff Van Camp – FAU
11.) Mike Hartline – Kentucky
12.) Taylor Potts – Texas Tech
13.) Zach Frazer – UCONN
14.) Ryan Colburn – Fresno St.
15.) Scott Riddle – Elon

Prediction: Tyler Thigpen and Adam Weber. (Fitz – Thigpen – Brown or Weber)

What I would do: Bruce Gradkowski and Adam Froman (Fitz – Gradkowski - Brown/Froman to PS)

Hit the comment section below with your thoughts!