ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay recently conducted a three-round mock draft where he played the part of the general manager for each NFL team and made the best possible pick. In the mock draft, McShay determined that no quarterbacks should be selected in the first round.
In reality, McShay expects three or four quarterbacks to be selected in the first round of next week’s NFL draft, including former Clemson star Deshaun Watson.
McShay said during a teleconference this week that teams will often pick a quarterback much higher than the grade they have for them because of the impact a quarterback can have on a team.
“It will be interesting to see where these quarterbacks come off the board, because there’s such a wide array of positives and issues with each guy,” McShay said. “Mitch Trubisky (from UNC) will be a first-round pick. I think it’s likely he’s the first quarterback off the board. Deshaun Watson is very likely to be a first-round pick. To me, he will wind up as the second or third quarterback taken, most likely the second.”
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McShay added there are plenty of things to like about Watson as a quarterback and franchise leader.
“A team’s just going to have to believe in his intangibles, his drive to be successful, his maturity, his athleticism, his arm, I think, is adequate to good arm strength, above average arm strength,” McShay said. “And the fact that he has the clutch gene and have a plan for him and a way to develop him so that he can transition properly from that offensive system in college to the NFL and continue to work on his deep accuracy.”
Former Texas Tech star Patrick Mahomes and former Notre Dame signal caller DeShone Kizer are the other two quarterbacks in the draft who could hear their name called on Day 1.
“(Mahomes’) tape lines up with a player that you would draft on Day 2, and the same with Deshone Kizer,” McShay said. “The inconsistency of accuracy, especially with Kizer, the lack of discipline and structure from Mahomes and the system he comes from, it’s almost like learning a different language what Mahomes is going to have to do from that system to the NFL. … When it’s all said and done, it won’t shock me if all four go. My guess is it would be three with Trubisky, Watson and Mahomes.”