Wyoming Cowboys quarterback Brett Smith shocked most everyone by declaring for the NFL Draft Friday night despite still having a year of eligibility left, he also is the first underclassmen quarterback to declare for the 2014 NFL Draft.
Smith has a resume like no other Wyoming player as he is the school's all-time leader in total yards, passing touchdowns, and total touchdowns, Smith also is second in pass yards. Plus, he holds the single-game record for most yards in a Mountain West game with 640.
Early draft analysis has Smith being drafted anywhere between the second and fourth rounds; assuming his pre-draft workouts go well.
Mike Vorel covers Wyoming for the Casper-Star Tribune did a Q&A session with CBS and NFLDraftScout.com analyst Dane Brugler, quarterback evaluator Benjamin Allbright and ESPN Denver NFL Insider Cecil Lammey.
We will use a few select quotes, but go read the whole thing because it gives some good insight on Smith's NFL future.
The most interesting item from the whole exchange was Brugler making the case that Smith is a more controlled version of Johnny Manziel.
Smith is a more controlled version of (2012 Heisman Trophy Winner) Johnny Manziel. So I'd much rather have Smith than Manziel and I can get Smith in the 2nd-3rd round while if you want Manziel, you need to take him top-15 because someone will take him that high. Smith is the first underclassman QB to declare so time will tell where he falls in the QB pecking order, but he'll be behind Teddy Bridgewater and a few others.
That is some high praise since Manziel is considered to go somewhere in the upper first round. All three experts see Smith being taken anywhere from the fourth to eighth quarterback.
Here are some strengths and weaknesses that Lammey presented:
Strengths - mobility, understands coverage pre-snap, is able to go through reads quickly, will scan the entire field before taking off to run, not rattled by pressure, high football intelligence, leader. Weaknesses - sometimes too bold, will attack small windows when perhaps a check down is best, accuracy suffers when throwing on the run, too thin right now.
These three experts seem optimistic about how Smith could project at the next level and where he could be drafted, and the weaknesses are one's that can be fixed once he gets to the NFL.
Seems that Smith did make the right choice leaving early since he seems likely to be taken before the fourth round. He will more than likely not have to be a player to be a team's savior, and allowing him to learn and grow for a year or two before he is a team's starter.