The Eagles are thankfully in a position where they don't need to worry about who performs well at the quarterback position. It could greatly impact the future of the team because of the potential for a QB-needy team to attack the position in the draft. Options to add depth are also always on the table for the Eagles in the later rounds. So who should fans be aware of? Let's take a look in the final installment of our Combine Preview series.
For a primer on what each category below means, check out the running back preview which offered a full explanation. The Mr. Average chart will give you a snapshot of what the average prospect drafted at his specific position has looked like over the span of the last five years to give you some context when the numbers from Indy start pouring in.
Top Pick: Deshaun Watson (Clemson)
This is a quarterback class riddled with question marks. Mitch Trubisky has only started 13 games. DeShone Kizer didn't win enough. Patrick Mahomes struggles to play within structure. Nate Peterman doesn't have tools that blow you away. Watson's play was a bit uneven this year and, like Peterman, there's nothing physically about his skill set that will wow you. I believe he has the potential to be a starting quarterback in the NFL down the line because of what he brings on and off the field.
Workout Warrior: DeShone Kizer (Notre Dame)
Athletic testing for the quarterbacks means very, very little, but I saw in person what Kizer can do with his legs when he took a 79-yard run to the house against my Temple Owls at Lincoln Financial Field back in 2015. The junior not only has great size, but also very good movement skills. I expect him to time well in athletic testing.
Stopwatch Shocker: Sefo Liufau (Colorado)
Liufau is the rare prospect who was a four-year starter at a big-time school that still flies under the radar, at least on the East Coast. Still, the 240-pound passer moves very well for his size and should be one of the more athletic quarterbacks in Indianapolis. His athletic numbers may impress, but it's the positional workout that will be important for Liufau at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Trust The Tape: Nate Peterman (Pittsburgh)
Peterman isn't the biggest nor the fastest quarterback prospect. He won't wow anyone with his arm in the positional workouts, but when I watch him on tape there's no question he's the "safest" quarterback in this class. He ran a pro-style passing game for the Panthers, was asked to do things in the structure of that offense that every NFL quarterback does on a weekly basis. He displayed the mental processing and consistent accuracy you need from the position. It wouldn't surprise me at all if he turned into a solid starting quarterback in the NFL.
Will Kill The Drills: C.J. Beathard (Iowa)
Teams are looking for how the ball comes out of the quarterback's hands. Kizer and Mahomes are the two who figure to impress most in that respect, but when it comes to clean mechanics I think Beathard is at or near the top in this class. He has a compact release. He needs work with his lower body mechanics, but I believe he will look the part of an NFL quarterback in Indianapolis. I still think his ceiling is probably as a backup at the next level.
Most To Prove: Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech)
Physically, Mahomes has all of the tools you want in an NFL quarterback. He has to prove to teams in the meeting rooms that he has what it takes mentally absorb an NFL playbook coming from the Air Raid offense. Mahomes is the definition of a gunslinger. He is a cavalier prospect who plays largely outside of structure for the Aggies in Lubbock, Texas. He needs to be reined in if he's to reach his ceiling. Will a team feel comfortable taking him as high as the first round? If it does, this week in Indianapolis will have a lot to do with it.
Most Productive College Player: Mitch Trubisky (UNC)
He's working with a smaller sample size than any quarterback in the class. Trubisky's 13 starts are the lowest of any signal caller in attendance, but no player at his position has a higher touchdown-to-interception ratio over his career, with 41 scores and 10 picks over three years (30 and six this year as a starter). By all accounts, he's a great kid off the field. Trubisky will earn money in interviews with teams. The most important part of his process here in Indianapolis will be in film sessions and on the whiteboard at night where he can try and impress evaluators with his football acumen and ability to be coached.
Best Story: Davis Webb (California)
Things have never been easy for Davis Webb. He started his career at Texas Tech, where as a true freshman he competed for time with fellow freshmen Baker Mayfield, who transferred to Oklahoma and became a Heisman finalist this past year, and Michael Brewer, who transferred to Virginia Tech and saw a lot of time in 2015 as a junior. He competed with Mahomes for more playing time as a sophomore and ultimately lost that competition to the big-armed scrambler. Webb transferred to Cal hoping to take the reins of an offense that was very, very similar to the one he left with the Aggies to have a big year. He's got physical tools, but can he handle the mental part of the position having played in the Air Raid offense? That's the question for Webb to answer.
|Height||6-3||Official 40||4.84 seconds|
|Weight||223 pounds||10-Yard Split||1.68 seconds|
|Hand Size||9 3/4"||3-Cone Drill||7.14 seconds|
|Arm Length||32 1/4"||Short Shuttle||4.32 seconds|
|Wingspan||77 3/4"||Broad Jump||9'4"|
|Unofficial 40||4.83 seconds||Vertical Jump||31"|
Fran Duffy is the producer of "Eagles Game Plan" which can be seen on Saturdays during the season. Be sure to also check out the "Eagle Eye In The Sky" podcast on the Philadelphia Eagles podcast channel on iTunes. Prior to joining the Eagles in 2011, Duffy was the head video coordinator for the Temple University Football team under former head coach Al Golden. In that role, he spent thousands of hours shooting, logging and assisting with the breakdown of the All-22 film from the team's games, practices and opponents.