Geno Smith I 6030 I 216 I QB I Senior I West Virginia
40 Time (E): 4.70
All Star Game Appearance: Senior Bowl (Invitation)
Arm Strength: Smith has plenty of arm strength and making all the throws in an NFL route tree will present little problems for him. Smith made a living this season fitting the ball into tight windows down the field. Throws an excellent deep ball with plenty of velocity to fit it against two high safeties. There are times that Smith forces the balls into tight spots and forces turnovers.
Accuracy: Geno Smith progressed each season at WVU in terms of accuracy. His deep ball accuracy is a thing of beauty. Where he runs into troubles is in the short passing game. Smith has a tendency to not put enough touch on balls close to the LOS and causes his completion percentage to drop. Medium to long accuracy is solid but will need work in the quick passing game to improve accuracy.
Throwing Mechanics: One of the top facets of Smith’s game in his ability to throw at multiple arm angles. This is an underrated skill at the next level. QB’s have to be able to adjust their arm angle or pass rushers will bat a ton of balls down (See: Brandon Weeden). He possesses a nice, compact throwing motion that allows for a catchable ball. He is a natural athlete that shows up in his feet during the throwing motion. He’s a natural knee bender that allows for a balanced setup to throwing the ball. It’s tough finding negative aspects about Smith’s mechanics.
Mobility/Athleticism: Geno Smith isn’t a Robert Griffin-type runner. He’s elusive and mobile but not a threat to take the ball the distance when he breaks the pocket. He does a nice job keeping his eyes down the field when scrambling and often made big plays but sucking up defenders with the threat to run.
Pocket Presence: As the 2012 season wore on, Smith’s pocket presence went downhill. He did an excellent job of feeling pressure and climbing the pocket early in the season. Towards the middle of the season he began to press and hold onto the ball too long. He needs to speed up his internal clock as he has a tendency to hold and pat the ball, forgetting about the pass rush. This will be an area to monitor during Senior Bowl week.
Intangibles/Character: Geno Smith is an intense worker in the film room and is noted for his studies of opponents. He’s a football junkie that is well respected amongst teammates. He will have to adapt to an NFL system as he’s spent his career in the shotgun spread at WVU. I don’t envision it being a big problem for Smith because he appears to be a tireless worker. One major problem area for Smith is his propensity to lock into his first option, especially in crunch time. He has to be comfortable with his read progressions and trust his receivers.
Size: Smith is all of 6’3” but could stand to add some weight to his frame. He isn’t afraid to stand in the pocket and take shots. In order to keep up with those hits in the NFL I would like to see him jump his weight up to the 225 range.
Overall: Geno Smith is the 2013 NFL Draft’s top quarterback prospect and could be the first overall pick. He’s not in the Robert Griffin/Andrew Luck range but he’s a solid QB with the capabilities of starting early in his career. Smith will be best suited in an NFL system willing to adapt to his skill sets. He’s comfortable out of the shotgun in a rhythm passing game. His ability to extend plays in the NFL will make him a danger as he has the arm to make all the throws from any point on the field. Smith started 2012 a house afire but cooled in the heart of the Big XII schedule. That said, the WVU defense forced Smith to press as they weren’t capable of stopping anyone. The need to score on all drives seemed to weigh on Smith as the season progressed but I don’t see that affecting his grade from NFL personnel.
Click here to check out my film study on Geno Smith done earlier in the college football season.