Wednesday, 31 March 2010
USC and Texas pro-day review
By Rob Staton
Today the Texas and USC pro-days took place. Pete Carroll was in Texas as part of his road trip - probably no surprise either, he knows more than anyone about the SoCal prospects. The big story was, of course, Colt McCoy throwing for onlookers. He took part in drills at the combine but didn't throw. Gil Brandt from NFL.com was present at the event:
"McCoy might not have the strong arm that Oklahoma QB Sam Bradford displayed earlier in the week, but that shouldn’t detract from a fine performance in front of scouts from 30 NFL teams.
"Of the 58 passes that McCoy threw at Texas’ pro day Wednesday, none hit the ground. McCoy connected on every pass to his four receivers — Texas’ Jordan Shipley, ex-Longhorns WR Brian Carter, Bengals WR Quan Cosby and former Rams WR Nate Jones — none of whom dropped a single pass.
"McCoy kept all of his workout numbers from last month’s NFL Scouting Combine, and he didn’t do any individual drills. However, the consensus was that he had really good feet and moved around well while throwing the ball." - Gil Brandt, NFL.com
As with Sam Bradford earlier in the week, there was never any real danger that McCoy wouldn't impress. These pro-days are designed to make a quarterback look good. It doesn't surprise me that McCoy moved around well whilst throwing the ball - he's an athletic guy throwing a football in shorts. When I watched tape of Texas in 2008 and 2009, I never once felt confident that McCoy was a NFL caliber passer. His game consisted mainly of short dinky passes for 5-6 yards and QB draws. His decision making was at times frankly awful - and almost costly in the fortunate win over Nebraska.
I also really question the Longhorns schedule in 2009 which was beyond vanilla. When McCoy had to face a good team - like Oklahoma or Nebraska - he was atrocious. He didn't survive long enough in the BCS game to judge him against Alabama.
He won't be able to run QB draws anymore in the NFL. Teams will comfortably deal with his one read and 5-6 yard pass to a favorite target. He can't beat you deep with his arm. The very best case scenario is that McCoy can become the next Kyle Orton. Even then, I'm not entirely confident he'll ever be a starting QB in the NFL. It may be harsh, but I wouldn't draft McCoy in the area where some people are reporting he'll fall. I think 4th or 5th round be a fair grade.
There was also injury news with safety Earl Thomas reportedly pulling his hamstring running a 4.37 forty. Similar news in SoCal too - Charles Brown ran a forty yard dash having passed up the chance to do so at the combine. He pulled his hamstring running, which could be a worrying sign. I'm not sure how persistent hamstring injuries are to offensive lineman - but to runners they can become chronic and regular. We'll have to wait and see if this affects Brown's stock on April 22nd. Personally, I think he's good enough to warrant consideration with Seattle 14th overall pick.
Everson Griffen might be worth keeping an eye on too. He ran a 4.60 forty today which is lightning quick for a 273lbs defensive end. The Seahawks need a pass rush and Griffen will be familiar with the system Pete Carroll will look to implement on defense. He's a dark horse pick who hasn't been touted in many places. I only remember Mel Kiper predicting this in one of his mocks.
Taylor Mays stood on his superb 40 yard dash from the combine. No surprises there. Stafon Johnson ran a respectable 4.59 considering he's still very much in the midst of his comeback. He'll find a team for training camp.
Posted by Rob Staton