The 2022 NFL Draft is rapidly approaching and after months of analyzing film, NFL evaluators seem to believe this could be the 2022 quarterback class could be one of the worst in years.
Sentiment about the eligible quarterbacks for the 2022 NFL Draft was much higher before the 2021 college football season. While no one believed there was a Trevor Lawrence-caliber prospect, Oklahoma quarterback Spencer Rattler and North Carolina star Sam Howell were viewed as potential No. 1 picks.
However, things went south for draft-eligible quarterbacks this year. Rattler was benched in favor of Caleb Williams and Howell struggled after much of the talent that surrounded him entered the 2021 NFL Draft. Meanwhile, Liberty quarterback Malik Willis didn’t flash consistency and even a breakout season from Kenny Pickett didn’t erase some doubts about his NFL ceiling.
Now, with talent evaluators finished getting a close look at the 2022 quarterback class during Senior Bowl week, Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer highlighted exactly how NFL teams feel about this year’s group.
“A couple of veteran NFL evaluators told me late in the week that they don’t believe there’s a single NFL starter in this year’s quarterback class. Not everyone was that harsh, but it was unanimous that these quarterbacks aren’t close to last year’s—and most agreed that all five of last year’s first-round signal-callers would’ve been the top guy at the position in the 2022 draft.”Albert Breer on how NFL evaluators view 2022 quarterback class, via Monday Morning Quarterback
It doesn’t come as a major surprise that the top quarterback prospects in 2021 (Lawrence, Justin Fields, Trey Lance, Mac Jones, Zach Wilson) all grade out higher for NFL evaluators than the 2022 crop. But considering how much the 2021 class struggled during their rookie season, it raises more questions about how the 2022 quarterback class will fare next season.
It is a surprise that some evaluators believe there isn’t a single NFL starter in this year’s quarterback group. Keep in mind, Jacoby Brissett started five contests while Trevor Siemian and Mike Glennon started four games this season. Furthermore, expectations were very low for 2021 third-round pick Davis Mills and he performed admirably in a bad situation.
While it’s fair to view the 2022 quarterback class as worse than the crop that came before it, there are surprises every year and at least one team will likely strike gold with their quarterback.