Zach Wilson is your favorite prospect hipster’s favorite quarterback prospect.
Wilson plays an exciting brand of ball. He takes risks downfield, makes off-platform throws with ease, and plays with a noticeable swag. In eight games this season, Wilson has racked up 2,512 yards and 22 touchdowns. All while throwing just two interceptions. More importantly, he is showing traits that football guys drool over when evaluating quarterbacks.
And yet … there are some NFL folks who simply aren’t there yet with Wilson.
ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler talked to league executives about the 2021 NFL Draft’s class of quarterbacks. And when it comes to Wilson, not everyone is buying a ticket for the hype train.
At the core of the argument (against Wilson being a top-10 pick) is his frame. Wilson is listed at 6-3 and 210 pounds, which, while not small, is not the sturdy QB frame for which most scouts are seeking. One executive told Fowler that hsi “slender build will be worrisome” for teams, allowing a group-think trap to push Wilson down draft boards. And if that happens, hellooooooo Bears!
Fowler lists the Jets, Jaguars, Washington’s football team, Giants, Falcons, Panthers, Broncos, Lions, and Patriots as teams that could target a quarterback in this draft for one reason or another. That group does not include teams such as the Saints or Colts, who are contenders who could move up in the draft to land a potential heir apparent. So, yeah, it matters if a player like Wilson can slip down draft boards because some teams don’t buy the hype. One team’s loss could be another one’s possible treasure.
Looking beyond Wilson to the rest of the field, you’ll recall that Trevor Lawrence (Clemson) and Justin Fields (Ohio State) are rightfully at the top of the board. Trey Lance (North Dakota State) is a wild-card, but is still QB3 for ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay. Wilson checks in as QB4, while Mac Jones (Alabama) is fifth, and Kyle Trask (Florida) is sixth. The Bears (5-5) are in the mix for tier of quarterback prospects who aren’t Lawrence and Fields, thus, dropping them outside the top-10 overall. Whether that group includes Wilson could ultimately depend on how he performs and how many (if any) teams are scared off the hype train. In other words, stay tuned.