Devy Watch: QB Josh Allen, Wyoming

There is a savvy, gunslinging, quarterback formed in the mold of Aaron Rodgers (the most purely talented quarterback of all time, but that’s a different discussion) ready and waiting. His name is Josh Allen, and he might not be who you expect. Typically, when you find quarterbacks with the 6’5” frame and a lightning quick release, they play for a power-five team. Typically, when you find a quarterback with a cannon for an arm and mobility to match it, they get multiple D1 offers and have multiple stars linked with their recruiting profile. Josh Allen has all of the traits, yet comes with none of those assumptions. Allen went to a junior college (Reedley College) out of Firebaugh High School He wasn’t exactly a high school prodigy. He received 0 stars by ESPN, and only one Division 1 offer, it’s safe to say he wasn’t a household name coming into college. So let’s forget about all the accolades normally found with a first round worthy quarterback, and focus on the astonishing talent he is.

Strengths

Mechanics: As a quarterback, so often you are either limited or carried by your mechanics, and if I can tell you one thing, Josh Allen’s mechanics should be labeled as “elite.” He’s got a release so quick you swear it must have been photoshopped, with excellent fluidity and consistency from his torso, to his shoulders, to his hands. Allen’s mechanics are just about as good as I have seen in any college quarterback, and better than any in the 2016 class. Not perfect, he has a tiny bit of a side arm release, but c’mon now, let’s not get picky, let’s appreciate good mechanics when we see it. There are some players with certain skills sets that I can’t help but drool over, and one of those is this one for Allen.

Throw Power: Allen can, and is willing to make every single throw on the field, he has as much confidence in his arm as anyone. Watching him roll out to his right, and hurl bullets down the field, there is no questioning the cannon that he has seemingly replaced with his arm. If there is one thing to improve on here, it is actually in toning down his throw power for his short to intermediate throws. Sometimes his receivers don’t even get a chance to think before the ball is bouncing off of their hands, luckily that’s correctable.

Mobility: This is the trait that may just have the “Aaron Rodgers Jr.” labels rolling in for Allen. The Wyoming Cowboy looks eerily similar to Mr. Rodgers navigating the pocket and scrambling for 8 or 9 yards when there is nothing available downfield. With great quickness and perhaps an even better feel of how to use it, this makes Allen an even better fit for the modern NFL.

I want to start off by saying that he does not have any glaring holes in his game, these are just areas that if he could improve on would round out his game and make him a “no doubter” for a top 5 pick.

Footwork: Allen’s inconsistent footwork leads to inconsistent accuracy, not surprisingly. Too often (especially when under pressure) he is unwilling to step into throws or gets lazy with his left foot (plant foot). While Allen has the arm strength to bail him out a lot of times, he makes it much harder on himself by missing intermediate throws due to sloppy footwork.

Decision Making: I love the gunslinger type of quarterback, but 15 interceptions in the 2016 season is way too many. Much like the cocky sharpshooter in basketball, Allen has never seen a throw he wasn’t willing to try, sometimes it pays off, but other times it hurts his team badly. Only practice, and perhaps a newfound value for possession can break this bad habit before it really hurts him, so let’s hope he can figure it out.

Watching Josh Allen will make you want to jump out of your seat occasionally, he will make some simply incredible throws that really only a handful of quarterbacks can make.

 

 

And then other times he will leave you scratching your head after a throw into double or triple coverage unsurprisingly gets intercepted.

At the end of the day though, Allen has potential that rarely comes around, and I suspect some teams will fall in love with his tremendous arm talent, and be willing to live and die by his play much like the Packers were with Brett Favre (who threw the most interceptions of all time, yet is also second all-time in touchdown throws). His strengths scream Aaron Rodgers-type potential, and his weaknesses show a scary worst-case scenario, but I say he is well worth the risk, and more specifically, a top ten pick.

Games watched:

Boise State 

New Mexico 

BYU

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bylitalo

Bradley Ylitalo, Minneapolis MN. Bethel Football Student Coach. Scouting/Devy writer for the Dynasty Football Factory. Follow me on twitter @NFL_drafthub or find me on facebook: Bradley Ylitalo

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