Jan 24, 2015; Mobile, AL, USA; North squad quarterback Bryce Petty of Baylor (14) throws on the run against the South squad in the first quarter of the Senior Bowl at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports
The quarterback class of the 2015 NFL draft is one big conundrum, and Bryce Petty out of Baylor is adding to that confusion. Where does he currently sit based on his latest scouting report?
Petty has the preferred size for a pro quarterback at 6’3”, 220 lbs. That should mean he can withstand the typical punishment that comes with playing in the pros. On top of that, he isn’t a statue standing back there. He has shown on a number of occasions that he can tuck the ball and run.
He is also adept at getting the ball out of his hands quickly. Once the snap is made he goes through his motions quickly whether it’s faking a hand off or looking off the safety and then delivers the ball with a swift motion that doesn’t take too much time. He’s also good at delivering it on time for slant plays.
That leads directly into another strength of his game. Petty is fearless. He has no qualms about what the coverage might be or whether pass rushers are bearing down on him. There is enough confidence between his ears for him to turn it loose in any situation and trust his own ability and that of his teammates to make the play happen.
The first thing that jumps out about Petty is his serious lack of accuracy on the deep ball. While his arm strength isn’t elite, he has enough juice to go downfield. His problem lay in his mechanics. Too often he throws from a rather leisurely position, almost like he’s throwing off his back foot. He doesn’t use his footwork, legs and body to his advantage. That lack of repetition in his movement directly impacts where the ball goes and can often result in overthrows and bad ball placement.
As stated earlier he’s good at getting the ball out fast, but there are times he tends to freeze when his first option is covered. He can sometimes let the pressure set in. Adding to that, he fails to recognize blitzes consistently and either gets himself hit or sacked which can sometimes lead to a bad play.
Another troublesome thing to note is Petty lacks a certain clutch quality NFL teams prefer in their quarterbacks. He is 0-2 for his college career in bowl games. For the 2014 season he completed just 52% of his passes for 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions in the 4th quarter while also getting sacked eight times. In fairness he does play well against big opponents but can never seem to beat them.
There really isn’t a lot to hate about Bryce Petty as a person. He’s big, strong, confident and by all accounts a leader on the field. Guys have made it in the pros with less. That being said, he’s behind the curve because of the offense he played in at Baylor. His mechanics are way too raw and his accuracy is streaky at best. Best case scenario is he’s a solid 3rd round pick but if he struggles at the scouting combine like he did at the Senior Bowl, he may drop as far as the 5th.
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