Operated a wing-T offense in high school. The Florida prep redshirted in 2010. Saw action in 10 games in '11 and completed 75-of-110 (68.2 percent) passes for 958 yards, six touchdowns and three interceptions. In '12, made all 14 starts and threw for 251-399-3,059-25-7 (62.9). Was MVP of the Beef 'O' Brady Bowl after throwing for three scores and rushing for another. Earned American Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Year in '13 after tossing 259-382-3,581-25-9 (67.8) in 13 starts. Threw for 301 yards (three TDs) and rushed for 93 yards (one score) to earn Tostitos Fiesta Bowl MVP honors. One of only two UCF quarterbacks to pass for more than 3,000 yards in multiple seasons (Daunte Culpepper). Had 195 career rushing attempts for 561 yards (2.9-yard average) and 15 touchdowns. Was 22-5 in 27 career starts in head coach George O'Leary's pro-style offense, which featured option elements.
Possesses prototype size and outstanding stature in the pocket to brush off the rush and keep plays alive. Stands tall and delivers the ball in the face of heavy pressure. Keeps his eyes downfield while climbing the pocket, can avoid the first wave and make plays with his feet (deceptively quick and plays faster than timed speed). Good field vision and release point. Is efficient throwing on the run and excels on bootlegs and play-action passing. Good zip and accuracy on short-to-intermediate throws -- can fit the ball into tight windows. Fine touch to drop the ball in the bucket -- delivers a catchable ball with good anticipation. Senses pressure and evades the rush. Doesn't take many unnecessary sacks. Can extend plays when the pocket folds. Carries a sense of calm in critical situations. Engineered comeback victories, beat Penn State and Louisville on the road and took a mid-major program to a BCS bowl. Recorded a 32 1/2-inch vertical jump, 9-foot-7 broad jump (third-best among QBs) and displayed fine touch, timing, accuracy and anticipation in combine passing drills. Ripped the ball a solid 56 mph.
Winds to uncork it deep and generate slightly above-average arm strength. Operated in an offense where he made a lot of one-look reads and short lateral tosses. Does not spin spirals consistently -- too many throws come out with loose wobble and could struggle to cut the wind and handle the elements of cold-winter climates. Tends to throw off his back foot when pressured, negating his accuracy. Works heavily out of the gun -- will have to adapt to snaps under center and deep drops. Operates an offense predicated on the short passing game that inflates his completion percentage. Ball handling/security could stand to improve (fumbled nine times as a junior). Struggled to throw receivers open vs. better competition (see Ohio State in 2012 and South Carolina in '13) and will require time to adjust to the closing speed of NFL defensive backs. Footwork could use some polishing -- deteriorates under duress and does not look natural on deep drops. Is only a two-year starter, can improve his overall understanding of the game and become more consistent with his mechanics.
Possesses ideal size, athletic ability, intangibles and enough arm strength to develop into an upper-echelon quarterback. Is not yet a franchise quarterback, but has all the physical ingredients to become an outstanding NFL starter and his arrow is very clearly ascending. Warrants top-10 consideration.