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Will Jalen Hurts be a first round pick?

Will Hurts go in the first round?  

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  1. 1. Yes or No

    • Yes he will
      38
    • No not a first rounder
      66


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Hobo's Jalen Hurts Evaluation, 11/4/19:

4 hours ago, Rich7sena said:

Hurts is not Kyler Murray (who's Barrett?). He's clearly a limited passer and even as a runner he's not transcendent. Hurts should go no earlier than the 3rd round and probably not as a quarterback, either. That said, I think his ceiling is the 2nd.

I think it's easy to think that a guy putting up big numbers in college is good enough to go high in the draft. But players don't take their stats with them to the NFL; they take their tools.

 

NOT a limited passer from the tools and tape that I'm watching.

Now, I know it's hard to evaluate a QB in such a wide-open offense, as I previously stated on my QB overview in the 2020 QB Prospects thread, and, as you said, the stats don't matter; only the tools do. That's why we saw a guy like Wyoming's Josh Allen taken number seven overall. However, we DO see some tools with Hurts. It's not like they're not there. His arm looks just as big as Baker's, we just don't have years and years of film on Hurts' performance in Oklahoma's offense like we do with Baker, where we were able to have a somewhat decent sample size of tight-window throws. There's a much smaller number with Hurts, given that, just like Baker, this is a wide open offense, and with Hurts we have a little more than half a season's worth of film, and with Mayfield, we had a truckload of game film. This is a wide open offense, so the more we can see, the better.

A few plays that I've seen as a sample: 3rd &17 against Texas Tech, found Charleston Rambo for a huge and really pretty touch pass about 40 yards downfield, about 50 air yards between two defenders. Clean release, good torque through the throw, really good placement fitting the ball into a small window over a long distance. High RPMs on the throw, two, which is like  for QB evaluators. Actually, most of his tight-window throws have been to Rambo. This is something interesting to note, but I don't know if it's of any significance. Maybe he just feels more comfortable throwing Rambo into contact than he does with Lamb because Rambo is a more physical runner. 

In the first quarter against Houston, on 1st & 10 in the red zone, when Houston's safeties had the Oklahoma receivers locked up in the zone, Hurts scrambled to the right to avoid the rush and found his runningback in the flat, who took the ball into the end zone. Not a big play as far as arm-talent goes, but he made a half-field read, avoided the rush, and found his outlet.

Later on against Houston, in the 2nd quarter on 3rd & 7, Hurts stepped up in the pocket to avoid interior pressure from a disengaged defensive tackle (who actually split the gap and came off unaccounted for between Oklahoma #52 and #56, bad play by 56, Creed Humphrey), stepped up and lofted in a perfect pass to a wide-open CeeDee Lamb for a touchdown. The ball traveled 43 yards in the air, which isn't exactly a cannon shot, but Hurts made it look extremely easy and hit Lamb fully in-stride. Lamb didn't need to adjust to the pass. Once again, we see good pocket presence, elusiveness to escape the rush, at least average NFL starter arm strength, and really nice accuracy despite a breakdown in pass protection.

3rd quarter against Houston, Hurts found Rambo for an easy slant between two defenders, which Rambo took to the house. It wasn't a huge window, and while it was a short throw, he put it into Rambo's body to prevent the zone linebacker from being able to make a play on it.

1st & goal against South Dakota in the 1st quarter, Hurts threaded the needle on a tight window throw to CeeDee Lamb for the touchdown. South Dakota had good coverage on the play, with all of the receivers locked up tight, including Lamb. Hurts led Lamb away from the corner with the pass, which he zipped just out of the linebacker's reach through the window.

On 2nd & 11 against UCLA in the 1st quarter, Hurts red the whole field and scrambled to the right to make an off-platform throw to a wide-open CeeDee Lamb. Lamb did need to adjust to this one, as he was well-downfield when Hurts released the ball, but he was wide open, so it ultimately didn't affect the result, which was a touchdown. 

On 2nd & 10 against UCLA in the 2nd quarter, Hurts got pressure and all the receivers were locked up. He worked his way back through his progression and found Rambo, who had finished his route and then just started running back across the field away from coverage. Hurts placed the ball over the outstretched arms of a defensive lineman that had won against both #59 and #81 on a double-team. He threw it back across the field past multiple defenders to hit Rambo in stride. Rambo took it to the house. Hurts' pocket broke down, but he stepped around the rush, and then threw the football with pressure on his face. It was a really nice throw and showed good arm strength, as well, to beat defenders across the far side of the field and accuracy to hit Rambo in stride without need for adjustment.

Those are just a few of the passing plays that I've noticed. While Oklahoma generally schemes guys wide open, you can still evaluate Hurts' tools at least somewhat adequately, and what I've found are that hist tools aren't lacking.

As a runner, he's fast, but not as fast as Kyler Murray or Lamar Jackson. However, Hurts is still a very elusive runner with the speed to beat linebackers in a footrace and the ability to juke out tacklers. He also knows when and how to use his momentum as a physical runner, primarily on plays where he's not at risk for getting hurt. As a runner, he's not afraid of contact, but generally won't place himself in situations where he's at major risk of injury, aside from short-yardage, but I think that's Lincoln Riley's playcalling. We all know that Hurts can run, though, as he ran all over quality SEC defenses while at Alabama, and I originally thought that he would be a running back for the NFL. 

We saw growth in Hurts' mental ability while at Alabama, and it's nice to see that growth continue at Oklahoma. While it still isn't perfect, Hurts's field of vision looks to have improved, as well as his ability to work through progressions. He consistently made half-field and perimeter reads while at Alabama, and improved a lot in that regard in 2017 and looked really good in limited play in 2018. This year, he still is rarely asked to make a full-field read in the Sooners' system, but he has shown the ability post-snap to work through his progressions during chaos and find his outlet man, or to quickly work his way across the field and then go back to find an open receiver. He also has shown the ability to work through chaos in the pocket, and has shown really good pocket presence to avoid the rush and manipulate it to give his blockers leverage. I think this single trait is what I'm most surprised about while evaluating Hurts. However, he also can occasionally bail from a mostly clean pocket too early, leading to leverage for defenders to disengage or holds from the offensive linemen. However, the frequency of this type of thing happening has gone down significantly in comparison to his time at Alabama.

As far as arm talent goes, I think that's the easiest to evaluate. It's good. I haven't seen him attempt any Mahomes-type arm strength throws, but I have seen him throw it far enough with enough velocity that I don't have any concerns about him being an Andy Dalton on the next level. His arm strength in general looks slightly above a DeShaun Watson or Sam Darnold. It might be better, but the ball is usually out of his hand by the time someone would be far enough downfield to see if he can make Mahomes-type throws. He can throw pretty consistently off-platform, and he is obviously a weapon on bootlegs or while scrambling.  He also has really good ability to set his feet in a clean pocket and use torque to help propel the ball, even after scrambling, which is nice because a lot of mobile QBs don't do that. 

In general, after reviewing Hurts' tape some more, and evaluating his tools, I would say yes, he is worthy of a first-round pick.

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I'm not seeing what you're seeing. To me, he looks like a near complete product of the system. I'm not seeing many pro throws and he can sometimes make layups look laborious. And I'm not sure if its that he's not throwing hard, but his harm looks noticeably weaker than both Baker's and Murray's. He also has a noticeably long release.

I also don't like him very much as a runner. I anticipate he'll run between 4.7-4.8, which is fine if I didn't think he was so limited as a passer. He also doesn't look great throwing on the move, which is a bit surprising considering how often he is on the move.

His best trait is probably that he's been on winning programs and appears to have a good work ethic. He also generally seems to have good spacial awareness. I want to see Dak Prescott or Deshaun Watson, but he's making me look too hard.

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9 hours ago, jyod21 said:

Ha, that's the only qb that was coming to my mind.  I'm guessing he meant Haskins then, if Barrett is JT.  He was the opposite of one transcendent season.

Correct.  Meant Haskins.  

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On 11/4/2019 at 8:22 PM, Rich7sena said:

His best trait is probably that he's been on winning programs and appears to have a good work ethic. He also generally seems to have good spacial awareness. I want to see Dak Prescott or Deshaun Watson, but he's making me look too hard.

And even with all that he's going late day 1 to mid day 2 because the way the qb position is being devalued ala rb.

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Jalen Hurts is absolutely not a first round QB. I'll be shocked if he goes in the first 4 rounds. He's an average passer, and an okay runner. He's wildly inaccurate deep, especially when he's forced to stay in the pocket oddly enough.

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On 11/4/2019 at 8:22 PM, Rich7sena said:

I'm not seeing what you're seeing. To me, he looks like a near complete product of the system. I'm not seeing many pro throws and he can sometimes make layups look laborious. And I'm not sure if its that he's not throwing hard, but his harm looks noticeably weaker than both Baker's and Murray's. He also has a noticeably long release.

I also don't like him very much as a runner. I anticipate he'll run between 4.7-4.8, which is fine if I didn't think he was so limited as a passer. He also doesn't look great throwing on the move, which is a bit surprising considering how often he is on the move.

His best trait is probably that he's been on winning programs and appears to have a good work ethic. He also generally seems to have good spacial awareness. I want to see Dak Prescott or Deshaun Watson, but he's making me look too hard.

I can’t see how you think he’ll test that slow having watched his tape. He legit looks like he has Cam Newton level speed, if not faster. He’s probably not as explosive but his long speed might be better. Either way I think he’s got obvious 4.5-4.6 speed as a runner... and it honestly wouldn’t shock me if he hits the high 4.4s, but I wouldn’t necessarily anticipate it.

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On 11/6/2019 at 10:00 PM, MookieMonstah said:

Jalen Hurts is absolutely not a first round QB. I'll be shocked if he goes in the first 4 rounds. He's an average passer, and an okay runner. He's wildly inaccurate deep, especially when he's forced to stay in the pocket oddly enough.

Someone's going to take him.  We're in a QB-needy league.  He's going in the first 96 picks.

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3 hours ago, CWood21 said:

Someone's going to take him.  We're in a QB-needy league.  He's going in the first 96 picks.

He’s not a good QB though. 

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I think so because I think he will remind teams of Dak who would 100% go in the first today.

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On 11/10/2019 at 11:25 PM, MookieMonstah said:

He’s not a good QB though. 

The question isn't whether or not he's a good QB. It's whether or not he'll go in the first round - which is more a function of how good Lincoln Riley is at highlighting his strengths and hiding his weaknesses over Hurts' actual ability.

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6 hours ago, ET80 said:

The question isn't whether or not he's a good QB. It's whether or not he'll go in the first round - which is more a function of how good Lincoln Riley is at highlighting his strengths and hiding his weaknesses over Hurts' actual ability.

I agree but people also have his Bama footage where he was severely limited throwing the football. 

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On 11/12/2019 at 10:14 AM, MookieMonstah said:

I agree but people also have his Bama footage where he was severely limited throwing the football. 

They had Kyler's footage from A&M when he was throwing balls into the dirt and looking lost out there, but that didn't stop anyone when he got a ton of good film from Oklahoma...

Position scarcity is going push QBs up the board, every single time. The rookie wage scale is going to further play into it as well - that 5th year option for 1st round picks is always going to be cheaper than having to reset the QB market when a non-1st round guy gets to year 3. If you can hold off on paying a guy $30mm/year by a full season, you take that. 

I don't think Hurts is a great QB (I don't think he's as bad as people make him out to be, either). Someone picking in the 20-30s (or someone picking in the top 10 of the 2nd round) will see an opportunity to tailor a Lamar Jackson-type offense around him OR let him sit for a year to develop... and they will pull the trigger, knowing they have five cheap years to get a return on this pick. 

On pure talent, he's probably not a 1st round pick. Given the economy behind finding a QB and the copycat nature of how the league is going, he'll find himself in the first round.

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10 minutes ago, ET80 said:

They had Kylers footage from A&M when he was throwing balls into the dirt and looking lost out there, but that didn't stop anyone when he got a ton of good film from Oklahoma...

Position scarcity is going push QBs up the board, every single time. The rookie wage scale is going to further play into it as well - that 5th year option for 1st round picks is always going to be cheaper than having to reset the QB market when a non-1st round guy gets to year 3. If you can hold off on paying a guy $30mm/year by a full season, you take that. 

I don't think Hurts is a great QB (I don't think he's as bad as people make him out to be, either). Someone picking in the 20-30s (or someone picking in the top 10 of the 2nd round) will see an opportunity to tailor a Lamar Jackson-type offense around him OR let him sit for a year to develop... and they will pull the trigger, knowing they have five cheap years to get a return on this pick. 

On pure talent, he's probably not a 1st round pick. Given the economy behind finding a QB and the copycat nature of how the league is going, he'll find himself in the first round.

Yeah that’s fair, and possible. I think taking him in the 1st would be a big mistake but I also thought the same about Lamar...

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