Robert Griffin III Scouting Report

Posted by Brad On October – 1 – 2011
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RGIII playing his way into the top 5 of the 2012 NFL Draft?

Is it possible to play any better than Robert Griffin III is playing at the moment?

Last season, we watched as Cam Newton destroyed opponents on his way to a Heisman, National Championship, and #1 pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.  Newton was the most dynamic player in college football and even he didn’t amass the numbers or the level of domination that RGIII is throwing up on opponents.

With RGIII’s outburst have come the Cam Newton comparisons.  The only comparable with Newton is his meteoric rise up draft boards.  RGIII is a dean’s list student that earned his degree in Political Science in three years and is currently working on his master’s in communications.  RGIII is a mixture of smarts, world class athleticism, and arm talent that are not comparable to anyone.  The closest comparison to RGIII is not Cam Newton or Mike Vick but more of a Steve Young (with twice the speed).

RGIII will not take over the number one slot in the 2012 NFL Draft from Andrew Luck.  I will, however, make an argument for RGIII to unseat Matt Barkley and Landry Jones for the second QB off the board come April.

Here’s a breakdown of the skills that will make Robert Griffin III a top 5 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Arm Strength

RGIII doesn’t have Mike Vick’s arm strength but can make any and every throw on the field.  He will have no problem throwing the deep out from the far hash into a tight window.  In addition to pure arm strength, RGIII can throw the ball down the field with accuracy from any spot on the field.  You won’t see receivers, and he has a good one with speed, outrunning his arm.

Accuracy

RGIII would stand out in this area compared to Vick or Newton coming out of college.  He leads the NCAA in completion percentage at 85% currently.  Aside from the numbers, RGIII is throwing receivers to spots much like a good NFL QB would do after they have mastered an offense.  His accuracy is impeccable and probably the single most important reason why he has taken a giant leap in the 2012 NFL Draft prospect rankings.

Mechanics

Griffin has a perfect over-the-top throwing motion and does a great job setting his feet and transferring weight.  Usually, guys that are naturally runners struggle with the feet side of the throwing motion but RGIII has picture perfect throwing balance and weight transfer that help with his upper body.

Pocket Awareness

Hard to argue against a guy that has taken two sacks all year but if there’s an area to nitpick this would be it.  He has a great sense for oncoming blitzers but tends to hold onto the ball when nothing is there.  He will need to learn to get rid of the ball rather than take unnecessary hits in the NFL.  Mike Vick is currently learning this the hard way.  It’s tough teaching this because it’s part of what makes these guys great.

Athleticism

RGIII was a semifinalist at the Olympic Trials in the 400 hurdles following high school.  He’s a nightmare for defenses in space with his speed and agility.  He’s the closest thing to Mike Vick that we have seen coming out of college and should run in the low 4.4’s at the Combine.  More importantly than his raw speed, is his ability to throw on the run.  What makes RGIII so dangerous is that he is always looking downfield for open receivers.  Teams have to game plan for his athleticism but also his ability to throw on the run which makes him a danger that we haven’t seen.  Cam Newton is good at keeping his eyes downfield and Mike Vick has learned this skill over time but RGIII is better than either at keeping teams honest with this ability.

Intangibles

As I mentioned, RGIII is a dean’s list student but also a student of the game.  Teammates have talked about his work ethic in the film room and leadership abilities.  He is further ahead than Vick or Newton were on the mental side of the game.

In most normal years, without Andrew Luck, RGIII would be talked about as a candidate for the number one pick in the NFL Draft.  Put all the above attributes together and you have a complete package that is a top 5 lock in the 2012 NFL Draft.


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