One of the things that interests me most about NFL scouting and evaluation is that it’s a moving target. There was a time 15 years ago when safeties were essentially devalued, and guards and centers never went in the first round. On the other hand, every team wanted a bell-cow running back, an Eddie George/Earl Campbell type who could take the ball 30 times every Sunday if necessary. Those trends have been turned on their heads in the last 5-10 years.
With that in mind, I was curious about the evaluation of passers going into the ’19 draft. Mobility seems more important today than stature, but I don’t work for an NFL team, so I decided to ask a few friends in scouting about it.
Here’s this week’s question: With Browns QB Baker Mayfield’s success this year, plus the success New Orleans’ Drew Brees and Seattle’s Russell Wilson are having in their careers, as well as the importance of mobility and rise of RPO offenses, do you think scouts are going to start eliminating (or reducing) height as a key requirement for QBs?
We got several responses. Here’s a look:
- “We have never eliminated any QB due to height. Just have to note their throwing platforms.”
- “Yes. Heights for QB, RB, WR, TE are all gone now. Productive players are coming in all shapes and sizes now. The traditional model does not fit in NFL offenses anymore.”
- “I think scouts already have adjusted evaluations in regards to the more athletic and shorter QBs over the past couple of years. As more of those type of QBs have success in the NFL, the more it opens doors. Although the QB’s height is being looked at differently, the body composition is still important regardless of how tall they are.”
- “I do believe that height is not something that scouts will anchor on as much as in the past. The thing about a guy like Baker and some of these other guys is, they have found a way through their careers to find throwing lanes and compensate for their lack of height, which is depicted in their low amount of balls being knocked down at the LOS. With pocket awareness/mobility and an ability to find and feel throwing lanes, height becomes more of a non-factor.”
By the way, if you’d like to hear what former NFL QB (and now QB trainer) Alex Brink of Portland, Ore.-based E-Force Sports said about the topic, click here.
It’s a pretty interesting topic, in my opinion. Want to get more feedback on the topic? Sign up for the Friday Wrap. It’s chock-full of information about the finer points of the football business (read last week’s Wrap here), and of course, it’s free. We’ll have more scout responses in today’s edition.
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