Draft Guide Sample Report, Zach Wilson (BYU)
Zach Wilson 6’2” 214 BYU JR*
An early entry into the 2021 NFL Draft as a true Junior. Will be 21 years old on Draft Day. Wilson has 28 collegiate starts to his resume. In 2020, he threw for 3,692 yards, 28 touchdowns & only 3 interceptions while completing 74% of his passes. To note: as a high school basketball player, Wilson averaged 15 points per game, 4.5 assists & 5 rebounds as a Junior PG/SG.
Trait Grades (Wilson)
Arm Talent (A-) Toughness (B) Anticipation (A-) Arm Strength (B) Pocket Presence (B-) Football IQ (A-) Ball Placement (A-) Intangibles/Off Field (B+) Touch (A) Delivery/Mechanics (A-) Running/Athleticism (A-) Throw on Run (A)
Tape Analysis (Wilson)
Wilson throws with natural anticipation & gets the ball out of his hand quickly. Throws with the best natural touch in this class. Has a very good sense of where windows on the field are & routinely throws with excellent timing & anticipation on a variety of routes (out-breaking, intermediate in-breaking, deep (post,fade) & quick game). Effectively uses eye-deception to hold FS during angle & body position of his initial set-up. Wilson is advanced for a QB coming into the NFL from an eye manipulation standpoint. He consistently moves & freezes under-coverage defenders in order to open up lanes to throw into. This is a refined ability even for high level NFL starters. Instinctively manipulates trajectory of his throws depending on coverage & leverage. Many have proclaimed that Wilson’s arm is near or at an elite level coming into the NFL however, his college tape suggests otherwise, particularly when compared to other prospects in this class (Lance, Fields,) Arm Strength is not a huge concern coming into the league but the ball can die at times on deeper fades & out breaking routes. As stated earlier, Wilson throwing with elite anticipation & liveliness often mitigates this lack of elite level arm strength. (His arm seems to be more than strong enough to be functional at the NFL level) Wilson has perhaps best combination of feet & vision in this class of QB’s. He is a smooth, natural athlete who has a rare ability to find lanes & windows to throw into, a nuanced ability I believe was developed by him being a high level playmaker as a HS basketball player. Has a very compact/efficient throwing motion. Can get throws off with immediacy. Instinctively throws receivers open while working both in & out of the pocket. Has the ability to throw to spots on the field to keep his targets safe against both zone (throwing away from defenders into holes) & man (putting great touch on the ball & hitting receivers in stride)Wilson throws with a high level of accuracy to all levels of the field. Shows the ability to be pin-point accurate off-script as well as he doesn’t need his feet to be perfect. Very loose & live with his arm on the move. Most natural passer in this class of QB’s (Mac Jones is second). Will look to run as a last resort & is very natural in this regard. Shows the ability to get out of bad situations easily due to his quick feet. Will take on defenders as well. Will have to learn to slide at the NFL level. Can throw with elite touch to running backs (swings, wheel). Rarely get passes batted down due to his ability to instinctively adjust his arm slot/trajectory. Outstanding awareness of under-coverage defenders as he routinely places passes away from them keeping his targets safe. Incredible internal clock on when to let the ball go across multiple types of throws.
Comfortable & effective playing sandlot style when the coverage & rush call for it but Wilson has a tendency to overplay this part of his game. He relies upon random improv a bit more than he should. He needs to become more disciplined playing the game from the pocket late into the down & by this I mean he must not abort things too early just because he perceives pressure. He needs to get better from the pocket in terms of being more sturdy & calm & learning to take hits to the chin while not flinching. His athleticism & instincts to create got in the way of this at times while at BYU. Slight concerns about the level of competition he faced. Has a tendency at times to drop the ball near his hip during his motion can cause his elbow to be lower than ideal at the release point. Wilson will over-shoot his targets downfield when this happens.
We believe Wilson is a top 2 quarterback in the 2021 Draft Class. He has seen his stock rise similarly to what both Mark Sanchez & Mitch Trubisky saw during their college careers. Wilson as a passer is far ahead of where those two were coming into the league. He also has a better feel for defenses than both & is advanced with many of the subtleties of the position already. He needs to develop as a pocket player to a degree. If Wilson is handled correctly at the next level, he has the tools to develop into a perennial Pro Bowl player. If this happens, Urban Meyer will be regretting his decision to bypass Wilson at first overall in favor of Trevor Lawrence.