As the NFL draft draws closer, it appears DeShone Kizer could be in for a draft-day slide.
On this note, one AFC head coach appears to wonder if Kizer is going to have a lot of success in the NFL and reportedly thinks the quarterback has “diva qualities.”
“He’s got the size, the arm talent and he’s very bright,” said one AFC head coach, per Albert Breer of The MMQB. “But there’s a disconnect there. There are diva qualities there, and he seems to get voices in his head, like he’s fighting who he is. And once the cycle starts, he can’t get himself right.”
In the spirit of fairness, it doesn’t appear this is a universal opinion. In fact, Breer spoke with an NFC scout who believes much of Kizer’s 2016 struggles at Notre Dame had to do with the environment fostered by head coach Brian Kelly.
“From everything I gathered, it was an accumulation of everything,” said one NFC scout. “There was not strong support around him. And playing for Kelly, things went bad fast. Every guy I talked to, seemed to like him, though. … So many bad things happened all at once, they lost so many good players, it made him look bad. He’s not an Alpha as a leader, but his teammates like him.”
It’s also fair to point out that, right now, every report that comes out shouldn’t be taken all that seriously — it’s the NFL’s lying season, after all.
All that said, there does appear to be a growing number of people who believe Kizer’s stock is slumping a couple weeks away from the draft. He didn’t have a great season for the Golden Domers last year, completing less than 59 percent of his passes, making key mistakes late in games and leading a team that went 4-8, missing a bowl game by a wide margin.
However, none of this is to say Kizer doesn’t have what it takes to become a franchise passer. He possesses outstanding footwork, worked behind center more than most young passers coming into the league and has all the arm talent anyone needs to thrive in the NFL.
If he does slide, one team could end up landing a huge bargain in the second or third round of the 2017 NFL Draft.