There have been questions as to whether or not J.J. McCarthy is a first-round pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer broke down why NFL coaches may not be sold on McCarthy compared to Caleb Williams. Drake Maye and Jayden Daniels, on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s “Toucher & Hardy” show on Friday.

“What you have with McCarthy, I think, is a guy who’s got experience running a pro-style offense, who’s shown that he can be a leader,” Breer said. “Who has good intangibles — like, really, really good intangibles. (…) He’s a really good athlete too. This is not Mac Jones. It’s not Drake Maye, but it’s not Mac Jones.

“I think the knocks on McCarthy are everything’s a fastball, and he needs time and space to throw. He’s got a really strong arm, but he throws his entire body into it.”

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Breer pointed out that in the NFL there are very few clean pockets and suggested that McCarthy would have to throw from bad body positions more often than not.

“So in a lot of cases, you need guys who can throw from a bad body position or awkward spots. That’s what the great quarterbacks in the NFL can all do now. And that’s where some of the questions are with McCarthy physically.”

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Although McCarthy led Michigan to the National Championship, there isn’t as much data to highlight the quarterback’s arm because the Wolverines didn’t use a lot of passing plays with McCarthy under center.

In his three years at Michigan, McCarthy completed 482 of 713 passes for 6,226 yards. Throughout his collegiate career, the 6-foot-3 signal caller threw 49 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

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“That’s why McCarthy is a projection,” Breer said. “It’s kind of an interesting thing because he has experience running a pro-style offense. (…) He should be able to adapt pretty quickly to play in the NFL. (…) What he doesn’t have is the amount of time on task that some of these other kids have.”

Breer also pointed out that the AFC has very good quarterbacks, such as Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, Joe Burrow and Lamar Jackson.

“The reality is, over the next 10 years, you’re probably going to have to beat three of those guys in succession just to get to the Super Bowl,” Breer said. “I think that’s the lens through which you have to look at this. Are you ever going to be good enough with quarterback X to be able to beat three of those quarterbacks?”

McCarthy may not be on the Patriots’ radar when they select the third overall pick in the draft, but reports circulated that New England’s de facto general manager Eliot Wolf is pushing hard for McCarthy to become the new franchise quarterback.

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