Welcome to the SSGPFL 2020 Draft Preview. Today we’re going to focus on the Top 3 QB’s in the 2020 draft class. There may not be a clear #1 this season, but for QB needy teams with good draft position or capital, there are a few solid options. So, without further ado, let’s see how the top 3 stack up.
Danny Gibson – University of Colorado
Danny Gibson, a 4 year starter at the University of Colorado, fits the historical NFL QB mold. At 6’ 3” and 223 pounds, and with a big arm that can make all the throws, he checks off all of the boxes NFL scouts look for. He has excellent pocket awareness and is quick to read whatever the defense throws at him. At the combine, he clocked a 4.77 40. While not slow for a QB of his size and stature, in college he was content to work the pocket until all other options were exhausted. Old school scouts love this trait, but new school might like to see a little more scrambling.
GM’s and coaches will also love this kids’ intelligence as well as his maturity. The consensus is this is a well-rounded QB prospect with no glaring weaknesses and, of the top three prospects, he just might be the one most ready to start out of the gate.
Craig Connell – Rutgers University
If there’s a scrambler of the bunch, this kid is it. Boasting a 4.61 40, he’s by far the fastest of the three and the most likely to use his legs as a secondary weapon. But that doesn’t mean he’s looking to run. Like Russell Wilson, his most common NFL comp, he’s looking to throw the ball downfield. And with elite level agility and pocket awareness, he can buy a whole lot of time to find his target. Being a shorter QB, there are concerns about his ability to find short and mid-range targets, but when he’s able to buy the time, his downfield passes find their mark more often than not. This is a QB that would benefit from and greatly complement a strong running game.
Like Danny Gibson, this kid is wicked smart, too. His command of the playbook and football concepts is second to none in this draft. As a 2-year starter at Rutgers, he’s not exactly raw, but he may take a little time to adjust to the speed of the pro game.
Ben McMullen – University of Tennessee at Martin
This kid looks the part but, as is often the case with a kid from a small school playing in an FCS conference, there are questions about how well he’ll adapt to the professional level. Against Ohio Valley Conference competition, he was consistently far and away the best player on the field. There are no questions about his pro caliber arm… At the NFL Combine he made all of the throws on the route tree with ease. In college, when he had the opportunity to play against higher level competition, he demonstrated extraordinary pocket awareness under duress. Even against SEC defenses his reads were true, even if the results weren’t always optimal. Most scouts feel that can be attributed to the skill level of those around him rather than on McMullen, himself. He also excels in running the two minute drill, and feels very confident in an up tempo offense. This kid is definitely NOT a scrambler, but he’s agile enough to buy time in the pocket when needed. If there is a weakness in his game, it’s on third down. Whether it’s nerves or something else, his accuracy when trying to pick up that clutch first down when it matters seems to suffer.
As with Gibson and Connell, this kid is football smart and demonstrates an ability to absorb pro level concepts. With the question marks surrounding him he might benefit from a season on the bench learning the ropes but, as high as he’ll be drafted, that’s unlikely to happen.
While none of these guys are the second coming of Peter Garner, last years Wunderkind, all three are, in my opinion, Top 10 prospects in the 2020 draft. If I had to put them in order, it would be in the order listed above, but I could make an argument for any arrangement of 1 thru 3 depending on GM preference and preferred offensive scheme. If QB is your need this season, and you have the draft position to pull it off, this is the kind of draft you dream of. Behind these 3, there are two or three others that just might be first round talents, themselves. Once all is said and done, this class may well compare favorably with the famed QB class of 1983. Old timers will recall 3 of the 6 QB’s drafted in the first round of that draft went on to HOF careers. While that’s no guarantee here, it’s a safe bet that a few teams are going to find their franchise guys for the new decade.
Good Luck, and Happy Drafting!!!