With all of the talk surrounding top four quarterback prospects in the country, Teddy Bridgewater, Johnny Manziel, Blake Bortles and Derick Carr; What about the next group quarterbacks?
These quarterbacks may not be drafted in the first round, but are surely capable of competing for a starting spot in the NFL right away. Here is a forecast on the top five second and third round prospect quarterbacks that can make an immediate impact in the NFL:
1. A.J. McCarron, QB, Alabama 6'4 214 4.82 40 yard dash
Being an experienced three year starter may give McCarron the edge before any quarterback in the second round. In those three years as the starter at the University of Alabama, he won two national championships. The guy knows how to win and who doesn't want a quarterback that knows how to win? He consistently shows good accuracy, and places the ball seemingly perfect for the receivers. Also, he is impressed with his touch on his deep ball throws. Reading defenses and being a good decision maker to limit turnovers is another strength for McCarron. The only negatives are he lacks mobility to avoid blitzing defenders and lacks pocket presence.
2. Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois 6'3 222 4.80 40 yard dash
Playing for a small school may hurt his chances of being drafted in the first round, but teams will regret passing this guy up in the first round. His 2013 campaign is what instantly brought his name in top quarterback discussions. Throwing for 5,000 plus yards and 50 touchdowns doesn't happen very often, but Garoppolo did it in stunning fashion. His strength is definitely everything that has to do with throwing the ball. He can do it all, short, medium, long throw he can adjust and make any throw humanly possible. If he is available in the second round when teams like the Oakland Raiders, Minnesota Vikings or Tennessee Titans, believe he will be taken with no hesitation.
3. David Fales, QB, San Jose St. 6'3 220 5.00 40 yard dash
Fales is one tough quarterback who can take a hit and get right back up for more. He is arguably one of the most accurate quarterbacks we have in this year's draft (72.1% in 2013). His biggest strength is throwing to the back shoulder to the tight end up the seam and can really "thread the needle". With his reliable precision passes he is likely to land in a West Coast style offense in the pros. If he works on the issues he has like dropping his arm before he throws and puts a little more "zip" on his throws he could up being a good quarterback at the next level.
4. Aaron Murray, QB, Georgia 6'1 208 4.80 40 yard dash
Murray threw for 3,000+ yards and 24+ TDs in every season he played in. He has all the intangibles, a high football IQ, and the arm tools that any team looks for in a quarterback. The main reason his stock is so low is because obviously the torn ACL he suffered against Kentucky. The other knock is him being only 6'1. If he bounces back from the injury as well as scouts proclaim, he will contribute often and early for a NFL team. Yet through all prosperity, Murray was still able to toss for 3,075 yards, 26 TD, and 9 INT playing just 11 games.
5.Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson 6'1 225 4.60 40 yard dash
Despite media reports to the contrary, Boyd's inaccuracy on top of his short height drops his stock significantly. He possesses plenty of arm strength, but was erratic, spraying the ball over the field. He is a mobile quarterback who can move in and out of the pocket whenever he wants. Boyd does show that he can both run and throw at the college level, but we will have to see what is done at the pro level. He has all of the potential to do great things and will compete for a starting job one day.
All the excitement is definitely all about the quarterbacks this year. There are so many quarterbacks who are ready to play immediately and so many that have a couple asterisks next to their name but have the chance to prove themselves worthy of being drafted in both the 2014 Senior bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine.
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