football Edit

NFL Draft 2019: Early look at top five QBs

CLASS OF 2019 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position | Team

CLASS OF 2020 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position

It's never too early to start looking ahead toward the next NFL Draft. So we'll offer a quick glance at who currently would be the top players chosen, position-by-position over the next two weeks.

2018 NFL DRAFT: First-round report card | Did we hit or miss on first-rounders in high school?


Recruiting: Originally a Texas Tech commit, Stidham backed off that pledge and ended up picking Baylor over Oregon and others in December of his senior season. After scandal hit Baylor, Stidham transferred to Waco (Texas) McLennan C.C. before picking Auburn.

Stats: Last season at Auburn, Stidham completed 66.5 percent of his passes for 3,158 yards with 18 touchdowns and six interceptions. He also rushed for four scores. Stidham’s passing yards were second in the SEC as he led the Tigers to a 10-4 season and Peach Bowl appearance.

Farrell’s take: We liked Stidham out of high school quite a bit, especially his mobility along with his pocket presence. His efficiency his senior year was off the charts and he’s always been good at taking care of the football. He was a Rivals100 prospect but never pushed that hard for a fifth star because he was always a bit inconsistent with his decision-making, mechanics and feel for the game during in-person evaluations.

Were we putting too much emphasis on camps and not enough on game action? Perhaps, as he’s really developed this past season and bigger things are expected this fall. This isn’t the quarterback crop of last year but there are some talented guys and he leads the way.


Recruiting: Lock committed to Missouri in April of his junior year over Ohio State, Tennessee, Michigan State and others. His father and grandfather also played in Columbia. Late pressure from Michigan added intrigue to Lock’s recruitment. According to reports, Lock said Jim Harbaugh told him he would never make it to the NFL if he chose Missouri.

Stats: In his junior season, Lock completed about 58 percent of his passes for 3,964 yards with 44 touchdowns and 13 picks as Missouri went 7-6. He led the SEC in passing yards and was No. 10 nationally.

Farrell’s take: I liked Lock a lot as a high school prospect even though he was tall, skinny and needed to fill out quite a bit. He was a bit of a project because of his frame, but he had a compact release and could get some zip on his passes. Lock struggled a bit throwing downfield and that still needs improvement although he’s come a long way. He broke out this past season and he’s improved his accuracy greatly. Now that he’s a 225-pounder, his arm strength has improved quite a bit from high school and if he continues to improve, someone will take him in round one.


Recruiting: Herbert committed to Oregon in October of his senior season. His only other offers came from Montana State, Northern Arizona and Portland State.

Stats: In eight games, Herbert completed more than 67 percent of his passes for 1,983 yards with 15 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also rushed for five scores.

Farrell’s Take: Herbert is another great find by Oregon as his only other offers were FCS schools. He was a big, raw, dual-threat coming out of high school who could sling it but had some accuracy issues and some mechanical problems. He also looked skinny despite being 210 pounds or so out of high school. He’s filled out, has improved his accuracy greatly and is making good decisions. This is expected to be a breakout year for him and scouts love his ability to extend the play.


Recruiting: An early commit to Arizona, Patterson committed to Ole Miss over LSU and many others later in his recruitment. After the NCAA levied sanctions on Ole Miss, Patterson transferred to Michigan and he received a waiver to gain eligibility for this season.

Stats: In 10 games over two seasons at Ole Miss, the former five-star quarterback completed about 61 percent of his passes for 3,139 yards with 23 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Farrell’s Take: As a high school prospect, we loved Patterson, from his arm strength and accuracy to his moxie and ability to make big plays when it mattered. Being our No. 1 quarterback coming out of high school, expectations were high after a really good final season at IMG. He has shown flashes of his ability at Ole Miss but bigger things are now expected. He’s not the tallest quarterback but he finds passing windows, can extend the play and throw on the run very well. He should excel at Michigan and could move up this board.


Recruiting: Finley committed to Boise State, his only offer, in March of his junior year. After redshirting his freshman year and then playing two seasons (his second cut short due to injury), the former three-star quarterback transferred to NC State.

Stats: Completing about 65 percent of his passes, Finley threw for 3,518 yards with 17 touchdowns and six interceptions last season as the Wolfpack finished 9-4. He also rushed for three scores.

Farrell’s take: Finley was a tall, skinny quarterback coming out of high school with a solid arm and very good accuracy. It was puzzling why no one but Boise State went after him and it’s not shocking to see him on this list even with a mid-three-star ranking. His size and ability to do things outside the pocket have scouts intrigued and he’s a leader.