The most important position in the NFL also has become the toughest to properly evaluate. Friday’s PFT Live included a visit with one of the men who develop quarterbacks at the college level for consideration and employment by pro football teams.
West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen explained the challenges of developing quarterbacks, given the time limitations that apply to student-athletes.
“It’s tough,” Holgorsen said. “I’ve had that question a lot from a lot of the NFL guys. ‘Why do keep things this simple? Why is the spread offense so simple? Why don’t you go under center? Why don’t you use more tight ends? Why don’t you use more fullbacks?’
“You’ve only got 20 hours a week with these guys, plus you’re limited with your scholarship numbers too. So we choose just to try to get good at something. You don’t have very much time where you can work with these guys. They’ve got to go to class, they’ve got to have a social life. We’re limited with the amount of hours that we have with them so you’ve just got to be careful on how much you put on them.”
That’s why, as Bruce Arians told PFT Live in Phoenix, college coaches look for quarterbacks who can “out-athlete” defenses. At the next level — as players like Robert Griffin III have discovered — that simply doesn’t work.
Which makes it only more difficult to figure out which of the college quarterbacks can and will become good (and hopefully great) NFL quarterbacks.