The 2014 NFL Combine continues trucking along, and more money is being made and lost each day. So who has helped their 2014 NFL Draft stock out the most? We’ll start at quarterback.
The guy who stuck out the most is Logan Thomas (Virginia Tech), in my opinion.
We’ve always known what kind of athletic gifts Thomas has always had, but we’re beginning to understand it even more. I mean seriously, who wouldn’t want a QB that’s 6-foot 6, 250-pounds, runs a 4.6 and has an arm that resembles a .700 Nitro Express (go ahead, check it out). But it wasn’t just the immense size/speed ratio where he stood out. In addition to the fastest 40-time for a QB, he also produced the best vertical jump (35.5 inches), three-cone drill (7.05 seconds), 20-yard shuttle (4.18 seconds) and broad jump (9-feet, 10-inches).
Plus, he got enormous, 10 and 7/8 inch hands, which scouts love because it helps long term accuracy and ball security on play action, for which Thomas is ideally suited. The bottom line? He’s an athletic marvel with wondrous physical gifts.
But he’s not without his problems, however.
He’s still incredibly raw, and despite his outrageous physical skills, has never really played the quarterback position at a high level. His tape from Blacksburg is less than stellar, despite getting a ton of snaps over the last three years playing in a watered down ACC. If anything, he’s regressed since 2011. His mechanics need a lot of work and his accuracy isn’t anywhere where it needs to be to play the position professionally.
Still, that kind of athleticism on that kind of frame is enough for someone to reach for him. And even if QB never works out for him, he’s got the skills to be an elite tight end as well in this league. Heck, he’s got the skills to play DE and OLB as well.
I think the best scenario for Thomas is to be drafted by a team coached by a proven QB developer, and sit for 2-3 years learning under a veteran, then get traded or replace the vet. For instance, if I’m Ted Thompson and the Green Bay Packers, why in the world wouldn’t I take Thomas in the middle rounds? Let him learn from and backup Aaron Rodgers for two seasons, get him some snaps in blowouts and preseason, let him build his trade value and swap him for (hopefully) an early round pick in 2016 or so. And if he can’t backup Rodgers, maybe he can catch passes from him.
Thomas has a very, very high ceiling. Probably a higher ceiling than any QB in this draft. But he’s also got the longest way to go. The Combine showed how far he has to go as a passer, because at this point he’s just a really, really strong thrower. But the Combine also showed us that he’s got a rare skill set that could develop into something special. Which GM has enough confidence in his coach and system to take Thomas in the 3rd round? Because that’s right where I’d look to snag him, well above the 7th round projection most him pegged for.
What other QB’s helped themselves out the most? Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M) ran well and interviewed even better, and Derek Carr (Fresno State) followed up a strong Senior Bowl showing with another good showing in Indianapolis.