Jayden Daniels is among the top quarterback prospects in the 2024 NFL Draft largely due to his electrifying play-making ability. And while the LSU product has been praised for his live arm and ability as a deep-ball thrower, his escapability with his legs vaults him to another level.

Many league evaluators and football fans have pointed to Lamar Jackson as a comparison given the Baltimore Ravens dual-threat quarterback is an in-the-moment example. Daniels himself said he sees similarities to Jackson. But others have since advocated for another comparison and instead highlighted a former four-time Pro Bowler, who was the MVP runner-up three times in his 16-year career.

That comparison is none other than Randall Cunningham.

Former LSU quarterback Tom Hodson, who was a third-round pick by the New England Patriots in 1990, is among those who think Cunningham is a better comparison. While chatting with longtime LSU reporter Jacques Doucet, who spoke to NESN.com for a story on Daniels, Hodson linked Daniels’ game to the longtime Philadelphia Eagles quarterback.

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“Great athlete, obviously. Fast runner,” said Hodson, who played 36 games in New England from 1990-1992. “He reminds me of Randall Cunningham a lot. People say Lamar Jackson, I think he looks more like Randall Cunningham. But a better thrower. And he’s become such a better player and a better thrower, I think his decision-making skills, he’s getting to the second guy before he’s tucking and running now. But man, when he’s in the open field, he’s electrifying. He makes stuff happen. But his accuracy, I’m amazed at how he’s transformed and become a more accurate thrower.”

Doucet reflected on the conversation while speaking with NESN.com. And Doucet, who closely covered Daniels during his two seasons at LSU, believes it fits as well.

“I thought that was a pretty good comparison,” Doucet said. “Randall, obviously, was an electric player and would have been playing for a Super Bowl for the Vikings had they not missed a chip-shot field goal in 1998. 

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“You can’t predict the health thing, but if he’s able to stay healthy, I think he can certainly be a tremendous pro because he has the ability to make all the throws, we saw that this year,” Doucet continued in reference to Daniels. “And he’s a defensive coordinator’s nightmare. When you have a play diagnosed and you’ve got everyone covered, he escapes the pocket and before you know it he’s down the field for 35-40 yards.”

Herm Edwards, who coached Daniels at Arizona State before the signal-caller transferred to Death Valley, made the same comparison when he spoke to Go Long’s Tyler Dunne for a story published Tuesday.

With the measurables of all three very similar — Daniels (6-foot-4, 210 pounds), Cunningham (6-foot-4, 212) and Jackson (6-foot-2, 215) — one of the biggest differences benefiting Daniels is his arm strength. He’s considered among the best deep-ball throwers in the class, and is a level above when Jackson came out of college.

Daniels has been heavily linked to the Washington Commanders and New England Patriots, who pick second and third overall, respectively. New England was well-represented at Daniels’ Pro Day in Baton Rouge and reportedly held a “lengthy meeting” with top prospect.

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Doucet believes Daniels would fit all of New England’s desires with his leadership traits and play-making ability — the same ability which has drawn comparisons to highlight-reel quarterbacks like Cunningham and Jackson.

Featured image via Matthew Dobbins/USA TODAY Sports Images