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.