2024 NFL Draft: Tackling the Biggest Narratives Surrounding this Year's Quarterback Class

Draft season is officially here, which means the football world must come up with narratives for this year's prospects. Today, we tackle some of the biggest narratives surrounding this year's quarterback class.
Syracuse v North Carolina
Syracuse v North Carolina / Grant Halverson/GettyImages
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2. Jayden Daniels has good pocket awareness

There are a lot of false narratives surrounding LSU’s Jayden Daniels, but this one is the easiest to disprove.

If you google scouting reports for Jayden Daniels, it’s shocking how many highlight his ability to navigate the pocket as one of his biggest strengths. This is surprising because this is not a strength of his. In fact, it’s one of his biggest weaknesses.

Daniels has always struggled to avoid sacks while under pressure. 24.5% of his pressured dropbacks throughout his college career turned into sacks. This is extremely high and it indicates that he either doesn’t sense pressure or can’t move out of the way when he does. Considering how athletic he is, I’d venture to say his issue is the former.

Another area that shows he doesn’t have good pocket presence is how he manages clean pockets. In college, he attempted a pass on just 90.2% of his career dropbacks in which the pocket was clean. He also scrambled on 9.4% of these dropbacks. Both of these marks rank bottom two among all quarterbacks in my database going back to 2017.

This shows that even when there is no pressure, Daniels likes to leave the pocket often. This wouldn’t be the biggest issue in the world if he were leaving the pocket to throw, but this isn’t why he does this. He actually doesn’t throw the ball all that much even when he has a nice pocket around him. Considering how small his frame is, this playstyle won’t work in the NFL. He needs to learn to stay in the pocket and operate as more of a pocket passer if he wants to play for a long time in the NFL.