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Interesting perspective from Ryan Leaf on PFF Podcast


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He mentioned the biggest reason he failed was his inability to handle adversity. Often times QBs who get picked at the top of the draft don’t experience any adversity in college. I’d put Wilson, Lawrence, and Jones in this category. 
 

Fields to me is a kid who showed a lot. Many pundits were questioning him prior to the Clemson game and he went out and put on a show (with broken ribs). That tells me he may be a good fit with the Jets. 

 

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2 minutes ago, GreekJet said:

He mentioned the biggest reason he failed was his inability to handle adversity. Often times QBs who get picked at the top of the draft don’t experience any adversity in college. I’d put Wilson, Lawrence, and Jones in this category. 
 

Fields to me is a kid who showed a lot. Many pundits were questioning him prior to the Clemson game and he went out and put on a show (with broken ribs). That tells me he may be a good fit with the Jets. 

 

Wilson: Had a sophomore slump and multiple surgeries in a that year. He bounces back to secure his starting spot and put up historic efficiency numbers.

Lawrence: Took a place in the national zeitgeist and then got Covid. Returned to dominate the team that ruined Clemson’s perfect season.

Jones: Was deemed the reason Alabama wasn’t in the playoffs the year before. Came back and put up numbers better than the guy before him.

If you can just make up narratives for anybody. 

Fields: Plays with a 2 potential 1st round wide receivers, and his coach chose to take the ball away from him in the BiG 10 championship game.

You see. You can spin everything. 

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Interesting thought by Leaf who has been spot on in his analysis of college qbs in recent years.  
 

as long as the qb picked 1st overall has a good head on his shoulders he won’t crumble with adversity.  I don’t see Lawrence crumbling when he inevitably encounters adversity in Jacksonville

 

I do see Fields having difficulty with adversity.  Any time the guy had a bad game last year he immediately went public blaming injuries. 

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I agree with the premise but not the application. Many QBs on the top ranked college teams are running fast offenses where the QBs are making one or two reads and then throwing it to a star receiver who can bail out a bad pass against a not so great defense. NFL teams know it which is why you don't see a lot of NFL starters out of Alabama, USC, Ohio State, Oklahoma, etc. Clemson is maybe the exception. NFL teams need a QB who can put the offense on his back and carry them to victory not QBs who are going to have a few great games, a few ok games and a lot of games where the rest of the offense bails out subpar play. That's what you saw with Sanchez and it's what you see now with Darnold. 

If that's Leaf's criterion then Wilson makes more sense than Fields. Ohio State is a bigger program that pours players into the draft every year. Ohio State has more players drafted last year than BYU has combined currently playing in the league. I'm not necessarily sold on Wilson but if your singular reason to draft a QB is how good the overall team performed then you would absolutely pick Wilson over Fields. 

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I think Lawrence will be fine.  He may not have great success in JAX, but I expect him to be far more Peyton than Leaf.

Wilson has not faced adversity.  Injuries, sure.  But he had just about the cleanest pocket of anyone in college ball and really wasn't challenged all that much either via the rush, or coverage on his receivers.  Not spin...just my take on what I've seen and I don't think it's that controversial.

Fields on the other hand?  If you doubted his ability to overcome adversity, re-watch the Clemson game.  That is also not controversial.  He went in injured, got his ribs blown up, and still had a game for the ages.

And if you want to critique him for throwing to two possible first round WRs, then you might as well take Mac Jones off your draft board.  Because I'm not sure if any college QB has had better WRs to throw to than him.  Well except maybe Joe Burrow.  

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