I was just watching a Xavier Rhodes (CB) compilation just now to get a feel for his game (quick summary- he's really good). I was only about 3 plays in though before the opposing QB from South Florida caught my attention and started to steal the show. A QB by the name of BJ Daniels.
Right away, I noticed that this is a bulky quarterback, built for running. He was a strictly read option QB that sold play action very well and had maybe the best on-field mobility in this draft, not just really fast, but shifty and instinctive. He also displayed a pretty big arm with good throwing mechanics and above average footwork.
Since I had no idea who he was, I assumed he wasn't in this draft. But as it turns out he is- and nobody is talking about him.
Now, there are reasons- great reasons- why he's not expected to be drafted.
First, he's short. He's listed at 6'1" some places, 6'0" at others, and even 5'11" in a few spots. I can believe it, since he has that squatty kind of "muscle hamster" type build that Russell Wilson has and for which Doug Martin got his nickname. However tall he is, he's a ripped 218 pounds, and other than an ankle injury that cost him a couple games at the end of his final season, he's been injury free despite his run heavy style.
As a four year starter, his career completion rate is just 57.3%. That's disappointingly low, and low completion percentage is one of the more potent negative indicators for a QB prospect. Consider this though- and this might blow your mind- Russell Wilson's career completion rate in 3 years at NC State? 57.8%. When Wilson went to a real offense at Wisconsin, his completion rate skyrocketed to 72.8%. His completion rate with the Seahawks was 64.1%.
What little I can find of Daniels, he looks accurate. Could his completion rate be down thanks to a weak supporting cast, similar to Wilson at NC State?
Daniels has a decent career YPA of 7.4 but just a tepid 52-39 TD-INT ratio. That ratio is partially explainable though- as Daniels has 25 rushing touchdowns.
I'm not saying that Daniels is a surefire star, but I like him a lot. If nothing else he impressed me in limited looks and I don't know if I've ever seen a projected UDFA QB with a more impressive highlight reel than this one. His style strikes me as a bit of a blend between Russell Wilson and Cam Newton, though obviously with less mental talent than Wilson and less physical talent than Newton. USF fans speak very highly of Daniels not only as a quarterback, but as a leader and hard worker and I can't help but wonder if good coaching and a great supporting cast might show him to be a hidden gem in this draft.
Last edited by kearly on Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:01 am, edited 2 times in total.
Good find. He does look short but sneaky fast. He had very good elusiveness and escapability and didn't always look to run first. I saw some arm strength as well but I wonder how intellegent he is and how well he can find the passing lanes. He is more RG3 than RW in the fact that he will probably require the use of his legs more often to make plays. If completely contained I don't know if he will be able to just sit back and throw. I'd be happy to seem him as a late round pick up.
I'll tell you this- you look at the short QBs who found success in the NFL, they all had two things when they started their careers: mobility and work ethic. Daniels seems to have plenty of both. Arm talent seems to be a common denominator as well, and Daniels has a lot of that too.
I did see him throw an ill advised pass that was intercepted (by Xavier Rhodes, of course), but for the most part I thought his decision making was okay. He is a touch skittish in the pocket but so was Wilson early on.
Last edited by kearly on Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
Great find. I can see RW taking this kid under his wing and helping his development as a QB. With his shifty running style he could probably play RB well if he doesn't work out as a QB, however he is so similar to RW in a lot of ways, he really fits the FO's stated desire to find an RW clone. I think I like him even more than Jake Scott (who will probably be overdrafted anyway). If he is the best option, I would hope the Seahawks draft him with a 7-th round pick rather than risk losing him as an UDFA to another team. Fantastic job Kearly, keep on watching tape and find us some more players like this.
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He reminds me of Raves QB Tyrod Taylor. Tyrod Taylor played at Virginia Tech although I can't remember if he did any read-option, anyway he was a better passer in college than BJ Daniels but similar type of mobility as a QB.
Jake Locker is a decent comparison. I think both QBs are on the "mechanical" side of the QB spectrum, meaning that they are probably QBs that excel within a strict system rather than those who are just "artists" like Russell Wilson or Johnny Football. I think Daniels looks like more of an artist than Locker though, and for the record, I'd love to have Locker as a read option oriented backup if it was on a dirt cheap 3 or 4 year deal.
I'd rather draft the best QB available at the position of the draft they'd want to take a shot at one than picking a read option QB. It's a component of the offense, not the offense, and can be removed based on who is under center if necessary. The success of Russell, RG3 and Kaep will likely mean in the future QBs that fit that mold, say Tajh Boyd next year, will be overdrafted.
TheWebHead wrote:I'd rather draft the best QB available at the position of the draft they'd want to take a shot at one than picking a read option QB. It's a component of the offense, not the offense, and can be removed based on who is under center if necessary. The success of Russell, RG3 and Kaep will likely mean in the future QBs that fit that mold, say Tajh Boyd next year, will be overdrafted.
IMO, Tahj Boyd is legit. He runs the offense with a ton of expertise and is already showing NFL caliber QB skills. He's also mobile. I think he's already at least as good as Geno Smith as a prospect, maybe a touch better. And I really like Geno Smith. I know your point was that good QBs with mobility will be overdrafted- but this is always true- and I think Tahj Boyd is good enough to deserve top 10 type talk and not just because of the read option craze.
If Seattle was willing to take any QB, and they wanted to get a non-sucky one, and they didn't want to spend a 2nd or 3rd round pick, the best they could hope for is maybe Tyler Bray in round 4. Bray is essentially a poor man's Andy Dalton though. I'd much rather have BJ Daniels for a 7th than Bray in the 4th, personally.
Good find. I love the stiff arm near his own endzone, scramble, and completion downfield as everyone sort of stands around watching, thinking WTF just happened.
I'd be fine with BJ Daniels being the Seahawks answer to Jim Sorgi (in terms of never playing at all, not style of play) for the next decade or so. Always enjoyed watching him at USF so why the hell not.