Which quarterback prospects are the real deal?
That’s the most pressing question entering the 2018 NFL Draft, which could see as many as five QBs taken in the first round. Lamar Jackson could be in that group, and while projections vary widely, at least one scout is very, very high on the Louisville product.
Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman spoke to a scout who ranked Jackson the second-best player in the entire draft, behind only running back Saquon Barkley.
Here’s the scout’s take on the athletic QB:
“Far more accurate a quarterback than people think. Had some whiteboard trouble (diagramming plays) with us, but he’s smart, a leader and, of all the guys in the league, he reminds me most of Aaron Rodgers. I think that’s how he’ll play.”
Not the worst comparison, considering Rodgers has a career 65.1 percent completion percentage for the Green Bay Packers (seventh-best all time) and boasts the lowest interception rate (1.6 percent) in NFL history.
The scout also believes Jackson and Wyoming’s Josh Allen will be the two best quarterbacks from this draft, ahead of the likes of USC’s Sam Darnold, UCLA’s Josh Rosen and Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield.
So, where will Jackson land? The New England Patriots reportedly were “intrigued and impressed” by the 21-year-old after working him out earlier this month, and while they currently own the No. 23 overall pick, they have the draft capital to trade up if they think Jackson will go earlier.
Of course, not all talent evaluators agree about Jackson; NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero passed along one particularly damning assessment of the QB from an NFL offensive coordinator.
“He’s an awesome athlete. He will not be able to play (quarterback) in this league, mark my words,” the coordinator told Pelissero. “When he throws, he hopes.”
As is always the case, we’ll find out soon enough who’s right and who’s wrong.
Thumbnail photo via Aaron Doster/USA TODAY Sports Images