This year's NFL draft isn't loaded with the elite quarterback talent of last year's, but there are still plenty of guys with the talent to be starting material.
All five of the guys on this list certainly have the potential and talent to start at the next level, and all will likely be gone in the first two rounds.
No. 5: Tyler Bray, Tennessee
Tyler Bray is a junior, but early indications are he is going to declare for the draft. CBS' Bruce Feldman gathered that information from a source.
QB Tyler Bray is leaving Tennessee to put his name into April's NFL Draft, a source tells CBS.— Bruce Feldman (@BFeldmanCBS) December 20, 2012
Bray is 6'6", 215 pounds and he has the big arm to go with his size. Bray has elite arm strength. He will need to add some bulk to withstand the pounding of the NFL, but he has plenty of room on his frame to add some weight.
What Bray really lacks is decision-making. He will often rely on his big arm to try and force throws into coverage, and often does this while displaying poor footwork.
If Bray returns to the college game and improves in these areas, he would be a strong candidate to be the first QB selected in next year's draft. As it is, he should be viewed as more of a project pick with a high ceiling.
No. 4: Mike Glennon, North Carolina State
At 6'7" with a big arm and a nice release, Glennon is a picture-perfect NFL QB when throwing the ball. He knows how to spin the ball and do it with power.
However, he is basically a statue in the pocket and has yet to show the subtle movement that will buy him extra time under pressure. That skill will be essential to his development.
Glennon can make all the throws. He can zip it in there, and also has the touch for shorter passes and fades. Once he is under pressure, it is a different story. He will make bad decisions and display poor mechanics.
Much like Bray, Glennon is more of a project pick with a high ceiling.
No. 3: Matt Barkley, USC
Heading into this season, Matt Barkley was a strong candidate to go No. 1 in this draft. His stock has since taken a hit.
Barkley chucked 15 interceptions this year, and too often he reverted back to the bad decision-making that plagued him during his first two seasons at USC. Still, Barkley displays a solid acumen for reading a defense and making accurate throws.
What is really going to hold Barkley back is his arm strength. By NFL standards, Barkley's arm strength is average at best. He can make all the throws in the NFL, but he can't drive them in there with force. Combine that with his less than ideal height at 6'2" and Barkley comes in third on this list.
No. 2: Tyler Wilson, Arkansas
Wilson is a similar prospect to Barkley. At 6'2" his height is solid but less than ideal. However, he is more athletic than his Southern California counterpart. Wilson does not have elite scrambling ability, but it is certainly adequate, and he has a great feel for the rush. He can make nice throws while on the move.
Wilson has good accuracy and will be an efficient quarterback. He could stand to tighten up his release, but it is good enough that it is not a red flag.
No. 1: Geno Smith, West Virginia
Geno Smith is an excellent athlete. At 6'3" and 210 pounds he moves well for his size and has excellent quickness. He can definitely extend plays and pick up yards with his feet.
Don't let those skills fool you though. He is a pocket passer first, and he used those skills to rack up 4,201 yards, 42 touchdowns and just six interceptions this season at West Virginia.
Smith's release is a little low, but not terrible, and he has solid arm strength. He needs to improve his accuracy on deep passes, but in the short to intermediate range he is spot on.
Smith has been playing in a shotgun spread offense, so it will take some time for him to adjust to an NFL offense, but he has all the tools to do just that.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!