The 2018 Prospect Report: Quarterbacks

Although we are only a little more than halfway through the 2017 season, for some dynasty owners the time has already come to begin to dive into the 2018 draft class. Though it is early, and several prospects may decide to stay in school, the class is beginning to take shape. Let’s take a look at the top quarterback rankings along with their potential NFL team fits.  The team fits are all based on the schemes of NFL teams which will most likely have a need at the quarterback position after the 2017 season and the prospects’ skill sets. Finally, we will wrap up with a quick view of the stock market as we approach the downhill slide to the offseason.

1. Josh Rosen – UCLA 
6’4” | 210 lbs.

Josh Rosen seemed to have stirred the pot with his comments concerning school and football “not mixing,” but he has shown he has the skillset to be a franchise quarterback. That also means he has the tools to be a potential QB1 in dynasty leagues. With a hint of Matt Ryan to his game, Rosen looks to continue his solid 2017 season and carry the momentum into his draft process this offseason.

Potential Team Fit: New York Giants

2. Baker Mayfield – Oklahoma
6’1” | 210 lbs.

Baker Mayfield is most likely going to be one of the biggest risers when the 2017 season comes to an end. He has displayed the ability to lead an NFL offense with his combination of arm strength and anticipation while having excellent pocket presence. His ceiling is likely to be that of former N.C. State and Wisconsin product, and current Seattle Seahawks quarterback, Russell Wilson.

Potential Team Fit: Denver Broncos

3. Luke Falk – Washington State
6’4” | 215 lbs.

Before I get killed for this, hear me out: Luke Falk has been a bit inconsistent this season, but he definitely possesses the tools to be an NFL quarterback. His play style is similar to that of Kirk Cousins during his time at Michigan State. Scouts and analysts often questioned whether or not he could lead an offense at a high level. Expect Falk to have a great Combine and Pro Day that will boost his stock to a future dynasty, low-end QB1.

Potential Team Fit: Pittsburgh Steelers

4. Sam Darnold – USC
6’4” | 220 lbs.

I fully expect Sam Darnold to return to school after the conclusion of this season, but as of now, he slots into the fourth spot in the quarterback rankings. Due to his extreme issue with turnovers, he needs to sharpen both his decision making and mechanics before he can be sure to find success with an NFL team. If he does declare for the Draft after this season, a Blake Bortles-like result is being given by the magic eight ball.

Potential Team Fit: Arizona Cardinals

5. Josh Allen – Wyoming
6’5” | 220 lbs.

With many of his offensive weapons leaving prior to the 2017 season, Josh Allen has struggled to consistently score points within his offense. At the end of last year, Allen was speculated to be a consensus top-five pick, but the signal caller with all the tools has slipped, according to multiple NFL executives. With a combination of excellent arm strength and play-making ability, Allen will still likely be a 2nd round pick in April. In the right situation, such as Pittsburgh or Arizona, Allen has all the potential in the world to become an elite NFL quarterback.

Potential Team Fit: New Orleans Saints

6. Lamar Jackson – Louisville
6’3” | 205 lbs.

Quite possibly the most intriguing quarterback prospect in the last few years, Lamar Jackson is an electric prospect with amazing wide receiver-like speed and NFL-arm strength. Unfortunately, he is not a consistent quarterback by any means. Before contributing as a quarterback, Jackson needs to solidify his accuracy to all parts of the field and his ability to throw on the run. He will likely be a late 2nd to early 3rd round pick but offers the most upside in both the NFL and dynasty leagues thanks to his running ability.

Potential Team Fit: New York Jets

7. Mason Rudolph – Oklahoma State
6’5” | 235 lbs.

Mason Rudolph will be the next quarterback, in a long line of them, whose potential success will be questioned during the draft process after putting up big numbers in a spread offense in college. His deep accuracy and excellent size will cause him to be in the early round consideration, but the lack of consistent arm strength and play recognition will cause his stock to fall come draft day. He will likely need to sit behind an established veteran before taking the reins to his NFL team.

Potential Team Fit: Buffalo Bills

8. Will Grier – West Virginia
6’2” | 200 lbs.

Will Grier has had an up and down collegiate career thus far. He spent his first season at Florida where he was suspended for performance-enhancing drugs.  He sat out the next year before becoming the starting quarterback at West Virginia. Though he is currently in his first full season without any interruptions, Grier has shown well with down-field accuracy and ability to hit targets on all levels of the field. He may stay in school another year, but he would likely be a mid-round pick in 2017.

Potential Team Fit: Washington Redskins

9. Nick Fitzgerald – Mississippi State
6’5” | 223 lbs.

This redshirt junior has risen up draft boards due to his size and the fact that scouts can project him as a starting quarterback in the NFL. Nick Fitzgerald does need to grow and improve his accuracy and ability to read progressions before he contributes at the next level. Should he declare after this season, he would likely be a later round pick who needs to sit behind an established veteran for at least two years, but his tools and size make him an incredibly interesting project for both his NFL team and your dynasty team.

Potential Team Fit: Jacksonville Jaguars

10. Riley Ferguson – Memphis
6’3” | 190 lbs.

Riley Ferguson may have one of the highest ceilings of this year’s late round quarterbacks but must tighten his delivery and mechanics before he develops into a legitimate NFL signal-caller. Though his release is elongated and Memphis’ offense is not super complicated with progressions and audibles, Ferguson does possess fantastic leadership and the ability to win football games. He could be one who continues to creep up draft boards and find his way into the 3rd-4th round discussion.

Stock Up

Baker Mayfield – Oklahoma

No one has strengthened his resume and proven himself more this season than Mayfield. Before the season began, it was presumed Mayfield’s skillset resembled that of Johnny Manziel. But once it became clear he could read through progressions and push the ball to all levels of the field with accuracy, that label was quickly shed. It is fair to assume he is likely a lock to be a first round pick this April, and a fringe first round pick in all superflex dynasty drafts.

Ryan Finley – N.C. State

The N.C. State signal-caller just missed my top 10 but has definitely caught the eyes of scouts and analysts thus far. He has good size at 6’3” and 210 pounds and has precise accuracy to all parts of the field. He must have a strong showing at his Pro Day and the Combine in order to boost himself into the mid to late round conversation, but he has boosted his stock this season without a doubt.

Stock Down

Sam Darnold – USC

Although NFL scouts and executives still believe he has the “it” factor, Darnold has somewhat hurt the security of his draft stock after struggling with turnovers. In addition to the fumbles and interceptions, Darnold’s mechanics have been extremely sluggish and Bortles-like throughout the 2017 season. Should he still declare for the Draft after this season, he may be an early first round pick but that’s definitely not the slam dunk pick he was considered before the season.

By | 2018-01-16T21:34:35-06:00 November 30th, 2017|
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