Here is the sixth section in the ongoing series of the intricacies of scouting college quarterbacks.
There’s always seemed to have been a misnomer concerning the need for a running quarterback. John Westenhaver describes what we should REALLY be looking for when it comes to the mobility of your signal caller.
If you missed Section 5 – BALL HANDLING, click here.
Section 6 – Mobility/Running Ability
INTRODUCTION: There is a distinct difference between the mobility of a quarterback and the running ability of a quarterback. The mobility of a quarterback can be defined as his ability to move in the pocket, get into the passing lane or to a position outside of the pocket (OT Box) to deliver the pass. The idea that a big quarterback or a less athletic quarterback is a “statue” in the pocket, in many cases, is just not accurate. In fact many of the greatest quarterbacks were and are not great athletes. So we should never equate athletic ability with effective mobility.
On the other hand, there are some quarterbacks that are great athletes. Ones who can make a difference with their feet as well as with their arms and it is this group that often times have outstanding running ability. Again, there are some who have that great ability to run with the football but have only marginal ability to sit in the pocket, read their progressions, and make good passing decisions. That is why a distinction must be made between the three types.
Pocket Movement within the Tackle Box
- Foot quickness to move from his set position to the next available passing lane.
- Is his initial step to the next lane with his back foot enabling him to be set to pass without having to re-set his feet?
- Does the quarterback have the quickness to move to the last available passing lane or is he limited?
- Describe the moves that the quarterback demonstrates (slide to lanes, climb the pocket, vs. a back side rush, vs. a front side rush)
- Can the quarterback sprint to just outside of the Tackle Box and re-set?
- Can the quarterback extend the escape beyond the Tackle Box?
- What are his functional limitations?
- Is the quarterback a threat to run the ball?
- Is the quarterback elusive in the open field?
- Does the quarterback slide, know when to slide, know how to slide?
- Would the quarterback rather take on tacklers, go forward in order to gain another yard?
- Does the quarterback secure and protect the ball during the run-describe his run style?
- Is his mentality that of a runner and does the quarterback prematurely abandon the pocket or does he run/escape in order to continue his reads and pass?
- How does his run nature affect the broad offensive schemes?
- History of injuries?
- How many games missed as a result of injuries incurred while running with the ball?
Up Next – Scouting College Quarterbacks – COGNATIVE ABILITY/MUSCLE MEMORY