It was finally his time to shine in 2016. With the graduation of Marquise Williams, that opened the door for redshirt junior Mitch Trubisky. The former “Mr. Football” of Ohio, Trubisky flashed in mop-up duty during his first two seasons, a lot was expected from him in his first season as a fulltime starter. Entering the season, he was expected to be one of the premier breakout players in college football.
Trubisky exceeded the high expectations in a monumental way. He turned in the most prolific season from a UNC signal caller in the school’s history. Trubisky broke the school single-season record for passing yards in a season, and also tied the record for passing TDs entering the bowl game. His 68.9% ranks 5th in the FBS.
The draft campaign of Mitch Trubisky has gained steady steam as the year progressed, and he now stands in the same breath with guys like Deshaun Watson and DeShone Kizer as the 1st round QBs of the 2017 class. How does he stack up?
@JonValencia_WiB saw a lot of tannehill in his game
— trevon godwin (@trevongodwin) December 19, 2016
Name: Mitch Trubisky
School: North Carolina
Class: Junior (RS)
Comparison: Ryan Tannehill (Miami Dolphins)
Draft Grade: Mid-Late 1st Round
Positives: Deadly accurate – dubbed “the most accurate QB in the class” for good reason. Surely has an NFL arm and can make all the throws. Drops the ball well in coverage on downfield throws and fits the ball into tight windows. Makes a habit of hitting receivers in stride up the sideline on intermediate-deep throws. Often hits his target in split coverage. Underrated athlete. Does a great job of sensing pressure and evading. Adjusts well to pressure in the pocket. Delivers forceful passes on the run and is strong off his back foot. UNC even implemented a good chuck of designed QB runs into playbook. Deceptive running the play action and sells the run very well. Sound mechanics – the ball comes out naturally. Releases the ball high eliminating the chance of batted balls at the line of scrimmage. Sound mechanics and can get the ball out quickly. Ability to scan the field and go through reads is not that of a one year starter. Plays with ice in his veins and engineered a handful of game-winning drives this past season. Above average arm strength. Prototypical size. Takes care of the ball – threw only 4 interceptions in 2016. Developed tremendous rapport with his WRs at UNC and played to their skillset. Loves the game of football – dream is to be a college head coach. Has the makings of a potential franchise QB.
Negatives: Lack of experience as a one year starter is a slight concern and may shy teams away in the top half of the first round. A lot of quick passes (slants, screens) inflated completion percentage (68.9%). Tends to put too much air under passes to the far sideline. Occasionally overthrows on deep vertical passes. When facing pressure in the pocket will shy his body away and release the ball at an unorthodox stance. Looked rattled and started to press in a big loss to Virginia Tech – weather played a factor in his struggles. Struggles at times throwing across the middle of the field.
Outlook: The rise of Mitch Trubisky is validated. Trubisky has seen a monumental ascend in draft stock – much like Carson Wentz last year, although much different situations. Trubisky has an NFL arm and stands as the most accurate QB in the 2017 class. His athleticism is a big plus as he has the ability to escape pressure to combine with his pinpoint accuracy and ability to throw on the run. He has the talent and character to be the face of a franchise. This class lacks that top tier QB talent like an Andrew Luck or Jameis Winston, but Trubisky could be the first QB taken off the board come April. Due to the demand at QB, he can go as high as the top 10, but I grade him as a mid-late round prospect due to his inexperience – difficult to invest so much into someone with such a small sample size. Oh yeah, and Trubisky wants to play for the Browns.