2016 NFL Draft: early look at Cincinnati’s Gunner Kiel

Cincinnati’s Gunner Kiel is a late-round quarterback prospect who’ll have a tough time moving up draft boards. While he has the size evaluators look for, he lacks the arm strength needed to make NFL throws. He should have a nice college career but his skills will make it difficult for him to translate that to NFL success.

The biggest issue with Kiel’s game is his lack of arm strength. He struggles to generate zip on the football and properly throw the deep ball. The clip below shows Kiel’s inability to get the ball out to his target on the sideline which allows the defensive back to make a play on the ball:

In the NFL this is an interception most of the time and even has the makings of a pick-6. Other than just a lack of arm power, Kiel also fails to drive off his back foot and step into his throws. His ball comes out flat and rises as it approaches his target.

He could gain a little more zip if he stepped into his throw and changed his release point. Kiel has an awkward side-arm delivery that hurts his velocity and accuracy.

Quarterbacks who lack good arm strength aim to make up for that shortcoming by anticipating their throws. Kiel has yet to show the ability to read a defense and get the ball out quickly. As the clip below shows, he holds to ball too long and locks onto his No. 1 target:

The inability to read a defense, questionable arm strength and staring down a target are all major problems for an NFL quarterback. Defensive backs at the next level excel at taking advantage of this issues and turning them into turnovers.

Unless Kiel shows improved arm strength or zip on his football he’s looking at being a late-round pick at best.