Allen and Jones exposing issues in draft evaluation

Josh Allen and Daniel Jones are showing that there is no exact science in drafting quarterbacks

Louie DiBiase
September 23, 2019 - 12:43 am

Every year, there will be highly-graded prospects coming through the NFL Draft that unexpectedly become busts.

Regardless of how much promise they show on tape or the upside they show in offseason testing, it is the nature of the game that teams, media, and fans alike will whiff on their evaluation of a college player many times each year. 

The same goes for prospects a large consensus believe don't have a chance at pro-level success before they even hit the field. There is no exact science to what makes for a great NFL player, and that especially goes for the quarterback position.

While it is just a year and three weeks in for Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen and one game for New York Giants rookie quarterback Daniel Jones, the two heavily scrutinized signal callers are showing the conclusions many organizations, draft media, and fans drew were too premature and close-ended for the timing of their careers. 

In Year 2, Allen has taken significant steps as a passer that many didn't believe he could ever make, considering his tape at Wyoming.

Everyone knew he had the rare mobility and arm strength to go along with a 6' 5" and 238-pound frame, but accuracy concerns led to the belief that he didn't have a chance from the start. One professional analyst even went as far to call Allen a "parody of a prospect".

Now, Allen has improved drastically in accuracy (at least a 63% completion percentage in all three games this season), he has become more patient in the pocket, and he has begun to use his mobility to open up plays in the passing game. 

While it is a much smaller sample size, Jones also proved Sunday that what a player is in college doesn't always define his professional career. The Giants were laughed at across the country after selecting the Duke product seventh overall in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Although a lot of the criticism can be justified based on tape, the upside of the rookie came out in the Giants' comeback victory against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. 

Jones finished with 364 total yards through the air and on the ground, on top of two passing and rushing touchdowns. 

The jury is still out on both quarterbacks, but that is the point. Many of the red flags following Allen and Jones out of college were accurate concerns. However, the close-ended, almost arrogant mentality about the two are proving to be misguided.

Regardless of how long it lasts, both quarterbacks are showing there is a path to turn their upside into high-end play at the NFL level.

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