Building the Perfect NFL Draft Quarterback

Matt MillerNFL Draft Lead WriterMay 5, 2014

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Teddy Bridgewater (Head)
The best eyes in the 2014 draft class belong to Teddy Bridgewater. He was asked to read the defense before and after the snap in Louisville's offense, and dominated doing so. Bridgewater's 31-to-4 touchdown-to-interception ratio is elite, and that's evidence of his ability to see what the defense is doing and pick it apart.

Watch Bridgewater in any game and you'll see him working the field—holding the safety with his eyes, scanning left to right and manipulating the defense with his field vision. That's what makes his head ideal for the quarterback position. Not only does he have first-class recall ability on a whiteboard, but he brings that talent to the field. When he's on the move in the pocket, he keeps his eyes up and shows a great knack for sensing pressure without looking at pass-rushers.

With exceptional field vision, pocket presence and the eyes to pick apart a defense, Bridgewater has the head every scout wants in a quarterback.

Derek Carr (Arm)
Watching Derek Carr throw on a cold, windy field in Mobile, Alabama during the 2014 Reese's Senior Bowl practices, you had to be impressed. In fact, you could close your eyes and hear how hard he was throwing the ball. While the other top senior quarterbacks all struggled with the wind, Carr excelled. That's a testament to the pure arm strength he possesses.

Carr has exceptional velocity to all levels of the field. He can spin it on a line when asked to throw a deep out, but has the touch to drop deep balls over the top or thread the needle on a quick slant or screen package. He's also shown the confidence in his arm to challenge the defense with on-point accuracy—placing the ball where only his guy can make a play on it.

The big arm from Carr is a bit of a surprise coming from his 6'2", 214-pound frame, but he can absolutely rip the ball downfield.

Blake Bortles (Body)
When you see Blake Bortles in person, it's easy to see why he's a player NFL scouts love. He's built like every quarterback should be—6'5", 232 pounds of athleticism and swagger.

Bortles looks like a quarterback straight out of central casting. He has the big, thick, developed frame to withstand the beating an NFL quarterback will take. He's also athletic and mobile enough to use that size on the edge to pick up positive yards as a runner or extend the pocket moving to his right or left.

If you want a quarterback built like Ben Roethlisberger or Andrew Luck—and the majority of the NFL does—Bortles is the best option.

Johnny Manziel (Legs)
Everyone has seen the brilliance of Johnny Manziel as a runner. He's agile, balanced, shifty and very fast in the open field. Manziel has the light, nimble footwork of a ballerina who just happens to be a crazy-good football player.

Few players at any position in the NFL have the change-of-direction skills that Manziel brings to the table. He's able to start and stop and stay at full-speed—showing a Barry Sanders-like ability to make people miss—but he's also a very strong runner with the lower-body strength to push through tacklers. Manziel's mobility is rare, and it's all powered by strong, fast, balanced feet.

He might not have the big body to hold up long-term in the NFL, but no one is questioning Manziel's ability to make defenders miss and create big plays on the move.