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Ask 5: Which QB prospect is most likely to be next Dak Prescott?


I remember my colleague Mike Mayock asking this question at the NFL Scouting Combine this year: Who's the next Kirk Cousins? It was a good topic to kick around in one of our meetings. Cousins was a former fourth-round pick coming off of an outstanding season for the Washington Redskins.

Who is the player in the 2016 draft class capable of pulling off the same thing? Well, as we all know, it ended up being Dak Prescott. Like Cousins, Prescott was a fourth-round pick. Unlike Cousins, Prescott didn't need to wait his turn. He has torn through the NFL in his rookie campaign, earning a Pro Bowl nod. So, let's update the question for the 2017 draft class: Who's the next Dak Prescott? I polled five personnel executives. Here are their answers.

Executive 1: Ole Miss' Chad Kelly
"I'm not a fan of this QB class, but I think Chad Kelly could be a value pick with some upside."

Executive 2: Cal's Davis Webb
"This is a tough one. I think Webb will go earlier than people think. When you really study him, he's pretty good. I think he'll gain some ground with a good Senior Bowl, too. He might not make it to the middle rounds."

Executive 3: Colorado's Sefo Liufau
"I'd say the Colorado QB. Very good intangibles, very good toughness, great size and a good enough arm. He's very accurate on the underneath and intermediate stuff."

Executive 4: Iowa's C.J. Beathard
"This isn't an easy question. The QB class isn't very good at all. I would say C.J. Beathard from Iowa. He doesn't do anything special, but he won't lose you the game. He's got a chance."

Executive 5: Beathard
"I don't think Beathard played very well this year, but he showed some stuff last year. He'll probably be a late-round pick, but he has some redeeming qualities."

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Summary: That's two votes for Beathard and one apiece for Kelly, Webb and Liufau.

Conclusion: This was a tough question for these executives. I didn't get the feeling that they were very excited about their options at the top of the draft, much less the middle rounds.

I like Liufau's size and intangibles, but I think he has some work to do as a pure passer. Beathard has the look of a longtime, successful backup quarterback at the next level.

Webb and Kelly are the two most interesting players, to me. Both guys have big-time arms, the ability to avoid pressure and big sturdy frames. Kelly won't be able to participate in the Senior Bowl because of an injury, and that could open the door for Webb to really stand out from the group. At the beginning of the year, I thought Webb would get picked in that Cousins/Prescott area of the draft. However, as we get closer to the spring, it's starting to look like he could be long gone by that portion of the draft.

Follow Daniel Jeremiah on Twitter at @MoveTheSticks.



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