Zac Dysert Scouting Report: NFL Outlook for Miami (Ohio) QB

Ryan Lownes@@ryanlownesFeatured ColumnistApril 20, 2013

OXFORD, OH - OCTOBER 27:  Zac Dysert #4 of the Miami (OH) RedHawks passes against the Ohio Bobcats at Yager Stadium on October 27, 2012 in Oxford, Ohio. Miami (OH) defeated Ohio 23-20.  (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Zac Dysert

Denver Broncos

Seventh Round: 234th Pick

In a deep quarterback classes devoid of elite prospects, Zac Dysert of Miami (Ohio) may be the most underrated signal-caller. 

He lacks the same size and elite arm strength, but his style is somewhat reminiscent of another former Redhawk, Ben Roethlisberger.

When the opportunity came for him to prove himself against top competition at the Senior Bowl, Dysert reportedly struggled.

Can he step it up on the big stage against top competition? Or will he be just another little fish in a big pond?

Strengths Weaknesses
+ Very good pocket presence, poised and maneuverable - Tests tight windows too often, throws into double coverage
+ Possesses the arm the make any throw and has above average deep accuracy - Development may have been stunted due to line struggles and system changes
+ Impressive mobility, can escape pressure - Inconsistent accuracy, ball placement
+ Prototypical size at 6'3", 231 pounds - Can he step it up on the big stage?



At roughly 6'3", 231 pounds, Dysert possesses prototypical size for an NFL quarterback.

Though he lacks exceptional speed or quickness, his athleticism is very evident when watching him play.

Due to a slight hamstring tear, he was unable to work out for scouts at the NFL Scouting Combine. He threw passes at his pro day, but was not healthy enough for athletic testing.



At Miami, Dysert became the first three-time team captain in school history. He may lack the charisma of quarterbacks from more visible programs, but he put his team on his shoulders more than most of those players ever needed to.

A well-rounded athlete, he captained his high school’s baseball and basketball teams. When forced to choose between his favorite sports around that time, he elected to play hockey over football. That decision was later reversed by his father, but could potentially have left lingering concerns about Dysert’s passion for the game. No one can accuse him of not loving the sport, but NFL teams want their quarterbacks to be completely consumed with football.

In 2010, Dysert suffered a lacerated spleen, which sidelined him for the season. Aside from that freak injury he has been durable.



During his time at Miami, Dysert was exposed to variety of systems and offensive philosophies. Last season, the team ran a spread offense predicated on quick passes to decrease the effectiveness of opponents’ blitz packages. In 2011, the Redhawks primarily threw the ball out of shotgun but Dysert operated from under center more. He identified terminology as the biggest struggle in changing offensive schemes.


Arm Strength

Dysert does not consistently spin a tight spiral, but he possesses the arm to make every throw. Of the quarterbacks in this draft class, he is one of the most effective deep passers.

Possessing above average arm strength, he throws with velocity. He shows the capability to thread the needle between the cornerback and the safety, fitting the ball into some tight windows.

Whether stationary or on the move, Dysert has enough arm strength to make throws from a variety of platforms.



Though he flashes excellence at times, Dysert’s ball placement can be defined as inconsistent. By most accounts, he struggled with accuracy throughout the Senior Bowl week.

Still, he demonstrates impressive command, showing the ability to put touch on passes at every level of the field. His deep accuracy is impressive, especially outside the numbers where he routinely hits receivers in stride. He displays the capability to throw accurately on the move.



With experience playing not only in shotgun but under center as well, Dysert appears comfortable and fluid in his drops. He utilizes efficient footwork regardless of system, typically doing a nice job of setting his feet to throw and transferring his weight properly.

The ball will occasionally flutter on him, which may be linked to relatively small (9 1/8”) hands or a more easily corrected grip problem.

Though he is not as smooth or quick as some others, Dysert gets the job done.


Pocket Presence

Playing behind a patchwork offensive line for most of his college career, Dysert was put in a position where he had to sink or swim. He took 159 sacks at Miami, a fact Jon Gruden emphasized in his ESPN special. While poor blitz recognition could be partly to blame, I believe that number would have been much higher had another quarterback played behind Miami’s sieve of an offensive line.

Considering how often he was operating under duress, Dysert appeared remarkably confident and poised, rarely rattled by a relentless pass rush or a tense game situation. He is tough enough to stand tall and deliver from a collapsing pocket. He feels the rush and generally keeps his eyes downfield; however, he occasionally turns his back trying to spin away from pressure.

For a quarterback his size, Dysert displays impressive maneuverability. He climbs the pocket and resets comfortably. Additionally, he demonstrates the ability to escape pressure and make plays outside of the pocket.



While lacking exceptional speed or quickness, Dysert is very mobile. Not only does he possess the mobility to escape pressure, he also can be a threat to pick up first downs with his legs.

He recognizes opportunities to gain yardage and can exploit defenses with his scrambling ability. After crossing the line of scrimmage, he is a smart runner that understands the importance of protecting his body and the football.

As noted earlier, Dysert throws comfortably on the move. He is most natural rolling to his right, but is also able to throw moving forward or to his left.


How does he attack Defenses?

More than any other quarterback I have studied this year, Dysert was forced to think on his feet and improvise in college. Though he often excelled when protection broke down, he is a bit of a cowboy.

He throws into traffic far too often and can be reckless when it comes to testing double coverage. Attempting to make the play, he occasionally hangs his receivers out to dry. He can be noticed going through his progressions, but too frequently fails to identify or respect defenders underneath.


Future Role/Scheme Versatility

Dysert has the skills, intangibles and physical tools to develop into a good starting quarterback in the NFL. Coming from the MAC, however, it likely will take some time for him to become acclimated to the next level. With a wide range of abilities and experience in a variety of systems, he does not appear to be limited by scheme.

He may slide down the board due to his inability to workout before the draft.


Draft Projection: Mid-Third to Fourth Round


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