Gabbert’s deep accuracy questioned as he gets ready for his closeup

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As we get ready for Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert’s Pro Day this week, a few smart people have started to ask:  How exactly did he become an potential No. 1 overall pick?

Matt Hinton of Yahoo! Sports’ college fooball blog Dr. Saturday wrote a great piece this week showing that Gabbert had a good, but hardly great college career.  The drafnik’s love for Gabbert has confounded some big college football fans like it did for guys with Alex Smith or J.P. Losman in the past.

SI’s Don Banks also dives into the issue Wednesday at length.  He reveals Gabbert will take every snap from center at his Pro Day in an effort to show he’s comfortable outside the spread option.

Unlike a lot of spread quarterbacks, Gabbert’s arm strength is not a question.  Neither is his athleticism.  Perhaps the biggest question Gabbert faces is about his accuracy.

“Some scouts I’ve talked to in recent weeks rave about Gabbert’s measurables, but they’re not yet sold on his accuracy making throws outside the hash marks, or question whether he consistently enough stretched the field vertically in Missouri’s offense,” Banks writes.

NFL.com’s Pat Kirwan says Gabbert’s completion percentage of throws over 15 yards was around 30%, which sounds troubling.  (It’s not quite as bad as you’d think: Tom Brady was below 50% on throws over 11 yards last year and he was the MVP.)

FOXSports.com’s Adam Caplan had a number of sources that thought Gabbert was a stretch as a top-five pick and conventional wisdom right now says the Panthers prefer Cam Newton.

All Gabbert needs is one great Pro Day and the draftnik chatter will turn in his favor again.

34 responses to “Gabbert’s deep accuracy questioned as he gets ready for his closeup

  1. We can’t move on with draft talk. The NFL players and owners stuck us on a shelf and said sit there quietly until we tell you to move.

    Sorry but I’m stuck on angry and I’m not ready for business as usual. You can’t just call a five month TV timeout and expect me to sit there quietly buying your products.

    Get the problem fixed. Play football.

  2. Even if Gabbert looks fluid operating under center in his workouts, a huge red flag is his overall lack of pocket presence, despite being in the spread option where all of the defense was directly in front of him to see. Gabbert actually got more antsy in the pocket over the course of his career, often flushing from defenders that did not exist. This led to inaccuracy as he all too often would not set his feet to throw. In the NFL where Gabbert will have to turn his back to the defense when making a drop from under center, I do foresee him struggling greatly, at least initially.

  3. Blaine – word of advice for you. If you don’t want the first screwed over veteran DT taking an “oops” dive into your ACL, stay away from Radio City on draft day.

  4. This ENTIRE QB class is weak so Gabbert moving up means nothing. It would be like being the smartest moron, it means nothing.

  5. He became the potential #1 overall draft pick by being Blaine Gabbert. Not to discount his tremendous football skills in any way, but every franchise, and the league in general, needs the personality.

  6. but he had such a great wonderlic score!! that must mean he is a can’t miss kid! unless u inlude his 33% completion rate with his passes attempted 30 yards or more!! yeah that wonderlic score tells alot about a qb

  7. This headline shold really read “Gabbert’s deep, mid-range, dump-off, screen pass accuracy questioned as he gets ready for his closeup”

    I hope the best for Blaine but he’s not a NFL QB.

  8. toe4 says:
    Mar 16, 2011 3:25 PM
    We can’t move on with draft talk. The NFL players and owners stuck us on a shelf and said sit there quietly until we tell you to move.

    Sorry but I’m stuck on angry and I’m not ready for business as usual. You can’t just call a five month TV timeout and expect me to sit there quietly buying your products.

    Get the problem fixed. Play football.
    =============================

    I’m not disagreeing with your sentiments or telling you you’re wrong. Not at all. But I will make two points:

    1) People need to keep in mind that up to this point, the NFL and the NFLPA* haven’t deprived fans of ANYTHING. The season, last I checked, is scheduled to start in September.

    2) Following the draft and enjoying off season football talk is not “buying their products”. I can read mock drafts, have opinions and debate them, and watch the draft on TV without contributing a penny of my own money.

    I’m actually taking the opposite tact you have chosen. From yesterday forward, I am not even reading PFT posts that deal with the labor dispute and am only reading and commenting on football related posts. I don’t buy tickets or jerseys or posters, so it’s not my money their fighting over anyway.

    If, and only if, these idiots don’t figure it out by let’s say August will I invest any more angst. What’s the point? They could care less what you and I think, anyway.

    I think my blood pressure has gone down about 15 points in the last 24 hours.

  9. henryjones20 says:
    Mar 16, 2011 3:58 PM
    but he had such a great wonderlic score!! that must mean he is a can’t miss kid! unless u inlude his 33% completion rate with his passes attempted 30 yards or more!! yeah that wonderlic score tells alot about a qb
    =====================

    That is an extremely deceiving stat. I would be willing to bet that a great majority of QB’s throw well under 50% on throws that long. As the article states, Tom Brady was under 50% on throws over ELEVEN yards last year.

  10. LMAO at him taking reps under center at his Pro Day. What does this prove? That he is ‘athletic’ enough that he can take a drop and complete a scripted pass? I mean I guess it’s better than continuing to take shotgun snaps, but it doesn’t prove he can play under center with a pass rush.

  11. realitypolice,

    I congratulate you on your blood pressure. Oh if I had your fortitude to move on!

    I will remind you that free agency ought to have started two weeks ago. Two of the busiest weeks in the entire offseason are passed and gone never to be seen again.

    They do care what you and I think insofar as we are conducting business as usual. How many people log onto NFL.com or PFT.com (for instance) is surely being closely monitored.

    If either side perceives an apathy building up they will be moved to hasten the pace. But if business is continued as usual it will be past Independence Day the next time we even hear about the possibility of the lockout ending.

    Let us not forget that after the draft there is minicamp that will be missed and then the June free agent signing period that will be missed. And training camp in July. All in grave danger at the moment.

    I do respect your desire to wait it out until September confident something will be accomplished, I guess I am just not wired that way.

  12. We will take Gabbert here in Buffalo…

    He can ride the bench this year and suck up all the information he can from Ryan Fitzpatrick.

    Come 2012, the team will be loaded with talent, Chan Gailey is no slouch.

    Then Gabbert can finally lead the Bills to a championship.

    Go Bills!!!

  13. As a Big XII fan, I wouldn’t draft this guy in the first three rounds.

    He’s tall. Thats about it.

  14. Wow finally some things that make sense, I have been wondering how this kid was a better prospect then Newton when they basically played in the same spread one read offense, numbers don’t always tell the real story but this kid just doesn’t pass the eyeball test.I still want to know what Mike Mayock saw to have this kid ranked top 5 and Cam Newton 21, especially if it was just based on football ability.

  15. If Andrew Luck would have went pro like most of us thought he would have Gabbert would be a 2nd day draft pick and we wouldn’t be talking about him. I don’t see how he is a 1st round draft pick.

  16. realitypolice: i agree with your point(even though u never mentioned my point about that bs wonerlic test). i don’t want cam or blaine in carolina,i want a DT. its just sickining how ppl who dont know anything about football(not you) cry and moan about who has the best wonderlic score and thats why he will be the best qb.

  17. Henryjones20
    So I guess Carolina should take a DT even though they had the worse offense ever assembled in NFL history. DTs that are 3 or 4 notches below Suh who was a # 2 pick last year. Hmmmm don’t see it. But I agree wonderlic is highly overrated.

  18. I felt Mayock was being a little shaddy when he instantly threw Blaine at the top of the QB list with his BS of how many tapes he watched of Blaine and liked what he saw…it’s now being exposed that Mayock, Mel, Lombardi are friends of Tom Condon, Blaine’s agent.

    Blaine is that rich kid you hated because he got the top job, not because he earn or deserved it but because of who he had in his corner.

    I’m sure Blaine will do GREAT on Pro-Day cause it won’t be live like Cam’s and we’d are left to make up our minds based on whatever Mayock say. Like he is really going to be HONEST.

    Also, I really don’t want Cam to go first. some of them Panther fans need to get out more often. Anyone who take a kid being drafted to their team so seriously that they plan on protesting with Anti-Cam Newton tee-shirts on Draft day against him have some serious mental issues. What’s next, showing up at the stadium with nooses?

    Talk about unneccessary HATE.

  19. henryjones20 says:
    Mar 16, 2011 8:02 PM
    realitypolice: i agree with your point(even though u never mentioned my point about that bs wonerlic test). i don’t want cam or blaine in carolina,i want a DT. its just sickining how ppl who dont know anything about football(not you) cry and moan about who has the best wonderlic score and thats why he will be the best qb.
    ===========================

    I stayed off the wonderlic point because I agreed with it. I should have thrown that in there.

    I think a decent wonderlic score can be used as one small part of an overall analysis, but should not be over emphasized.

  20. How is cam newton the 1 pick in the draft if gabbert has accuracy issues?? How was newton’s combine again? At least gabbert can throw an out route. Cam is a joke!!! One that’s not even funny.

  21. Most of his deep incompletions were actually drops by Wes Kemp. Also cost him at least 4 TDs, just in the games that I was able to watch (plus 3-4 the previous season, in the games I was able to watch) from outside the home market.

    Fact is, any early-draft QB has huge bust potential because of the expectations and desperation. Any QB expected to play quickly after the upcoming season of shortened or nonexistent camps is not set up to succeed.

  22. As a huge Mizzou fan I have my doubts about drafting Gabbert in the first round much less top 5! On the good side he tall, has a good arm, and can scoot. In some ways he is your picture perfect QB. On the other hand he only looked really good when Mizzou was totally kicking ass. There were a few exceptions. But it seemed like all the games that were close he played like crap. He may well turn into a great pro QB. He has all the potential and raw talent needed. I can’t think of a team that should draft him in the top 10. It seems like they all have a roster full of young unproven QBs already.

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