The 2017 NFL Draft features several quarterbacks expected to go in the first two rounds, but none of the QBs is considered anywhere close to a sure thing. The San Francisco 49ers have their choice of QBs at No. 2 overall, but odds are pretty good they end up waiting on the position.
One QB who could end up on their radar, if he is not already there, is Cal’s Davis Webb. He has been gaining momentum in draft media circles dating back to his strong performance during the Senior Bowl. Draft media interest does not guarantee NFL team interest early on, but it always feels like there are quarterbacks who climb into the first round or early second that are surprises.
This week, Bleacher Report lead scout Doug Farrar kicked off a series he calls “Watching Tape With.” In it, he sits down with a given football player, whether it be a draft prospect or current NFL player. There are always questions about what fans and media see on film since we don’t have access to the playbook or what is going on in a given player’s head. In this series, the player is there to answer Farrar’s questions.
His first article in the series this year is with Davis Webb. They have a Q&A that turns into something resembling the kind of interview process Webb would go through with a team. Farrar dials up five plays and has Webb break down what is going on, whether it is good or bad. It’s a great read to see how Webb processes information and makes decisions.
I won’t break down the specifics, but instead simply recommend you give it a read. Webb comes across as a very smart player who understands concepts, and issues that can arise. It remains to be seen how his skillset will translate to the NFL, but he closed the interview offering some context to that. Farrar asked him what separates him from the rest of this year’s QB class. Webb had this to say:
You ask any quarterback, and they’re all gonna say the same thing—they feel like they’re the best quarterback in the draft, and what I feel separates me from other guys is my work ethic and my love of the game. But I think my projection as a quarterback is very good—I think five to 10 years from now, I think I’m going to be a lot different than I am today. I’ll be a lot better, and a lot more mechanically efficient, and have the capability to run an NFL offense. So, I think my projection down the road is very high, and I think that’s what separates me—the potential is very good, and I’m going to work every day to get better.
With any draft prospect, a team needs to project out rather than just base it on what they saw in college. You want a player that will continue to improve, and in the case of these quarterbacks, it is even more important what you can project of them five or more years from now.
Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch are both signed for six years. They’ll either be fired or extended before the end of their respective contract terms, but they have some time to see what these prospects can do. Given the lack of a clear cut option, it will be interesting to see where the 49ers go in terms of a developmental prospect. I would be surprised if they did not, but the bigger question will be who is the guy they decide is the one to spend a developmental pick on?