Nate Sudfeld, QB, Indiana: Early Scouting Report



In a very top-heavy quarterback group in 2016, there are a couple of quarterbacks that have been flying under the radar as of late. One of those players is Indiana’s quarterback Nate Sudfeld. On my inaugural positional rankings for the 2016 NFL Draft, it was indeed Nate Sudfeld who was listed at number five ahead of more-known commodities in Cardale Jones and Trevone Boykin. So with that being said, my scouting report below will explain why I have Nate Sudfeld this high on my list.


(6’6 240 lbs.) Senior quarterback who currently ranks second in Indiana history with a completion percentage of 60.6 percent. In 2014, Sudfeld threw for 1151 yards with six touchdowns and three interceptions while attaining a 126.6 passer rating. In the second quarter against Iowa in week six, Sudfeld suffered a season-ending shoulder injury, but has reportedly looked stronger than ever in practice as of right now.


+ Sudfeld has all the tools that scouts love to see in a quarterback. To put it altogether, he passes the eye test. I mean this guy looks like an NFL quarterback. Not just on the outside, but he is also a smart, high character kid who was named All Big 10 Academic team. He is the kind of player I want on the field, and in the locker room.

+ Finding a young quarterback with pocket presence and poise is extremely difficult in this day and age, however, Nate Sudfeld has just that. He knows when to step up in the pocket and make the throw, as well as get outside the pocket and make due of what is given by the defense. This was one of the more impressive aspects of his game that I saw on tape.

+ He has a live arm that can stretch the field as well as with some touch as well. His deep ball accuracy at this point is inconsistent, but when it is on, it’s on the money, and I would hate to be the cornerback guarding his receiver when he is in the groove. This aspect of his game is what will put him in early round consideration. His ball placement/arm strength combination could be deadly for an NFL team someday.


– First things first, I’m the realest. Second, Nate Sudfeld suffered a season-ending shoulder injury last year, and I would be naive to believe that it couldn’t affect him this fall. Although teammates and coaches have been praising him this offseason that he is better than ever, a shoulder injury to a young quarterback could prove to be a disaster in his overall development. Maybe I’m over-blowing this one out of proportion, but I would still be cautious.

– Consistency, consistency, consistency. Nate Sudfeld doesn’t have one of these. My biggest issue with Nate Sudfeld is his inconsistency in his throws. I will never question his arm strength, but good lord this guy can throw it anywhere on the football field. That is a good thing and a bad thing. He will overthrow his receiver on an easy play horrendously, and then the next, he throws a perfect 50 yard bomb in the left corner of the end zone. I don’t get it Nate Sudfeld. I don’t get it. But like I said, he is cash money when he is in the groove, yet very bad when he is not.

– I do think that in the mental processing part of the game, Nate Sudfeld can get a bit lost. Most in part due to offense they run, but Nate Sudfeld does not read defenses consistently enough. To be a starting NFL quarterback, you must be able to read the defense on a 24/7 basis, and in my opinion, this is why Nate Sudfeld cannot be a first round pick at this point.

NFL Comparison

Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens

* Coming out of college, Joe Flacco had prototypical arm strength, size, and pocket presence for the quarterback position, however, he lacked consistency in his ball placement. Like Flacco, Sudfeld will have to learn the pro-style system when he reaches the NFL, and must read defenses accordingly. Also like Flacco, he won’t scare defenses with his mobility, but he does have the poise to hang in the pocket long enough to make the throw. To me, I think Sudfeld has the potential of a Joe Flacco type of player, and I truly believe that with a redshirt year in his rookie season, he can be a solid player in the NFL.

Projection for ’15/’16

* One of the biggest project players in the 2016 NFL Draft pool, but does contain a high payoff potential. The ideal situation for him would be to land behind a veteran quarterback like Carson Palmer and learn the ropes before taking the reigns. As of this season, I expect Indiana to be just above .500 this season, but I do believe that without Nate Sudfeld, Indiana would be lucky to win two games.

Next: Kevin Peterson Scouting Report