It’s an unfortunate reality, but Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s loss could be LSU QB Joe Burrow’s gain.
With Tagovailoa’s long-term prognosis still unknown – doctors say he will make a full recovery – Burrow now moves up as the presumptive No. 1 quarterback prospect in the NFL draft, if he wasn’t already.
Because of Tagovailoa’s uncertainty, coupled with his injury history, many draft analysts now say Herbert moves up to the No. 2 QB prospect.
Herbert would have been a high first-round draft choice if had left school early last season, but he chose to stay. Thus far, Herbert (6-foot-6, 237 pounds) has passed for 2,662 yards, 28 touchdowns and 3 interceptions while completing 70 percent of his passes.
Eric Edholm, NFL draft analyst for Yahoo Sports, says scouts wonder about Herbert’s consistency and have questions about his killer instinct. Still, those intangibles are hard to pass up, he writes.
“… Top-shelf physical traits in quarterbacks have a way of sprinkling the magic dust in the eyes of general managers and coaches who sometimes feel that they would rather gamble on a player’s upside than his actual production. That’s why Herbert has an excellent chance to slide into a top-five spot now — something that was far from guaranteed before Tagovailoa got hurt,” Edholm writes.
Love is another prospect who has been mentioned as a possible Day 1 or Day 2 pick. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler has consistently placed Love in his top-20.
“There is no way around it – Love and Utah State have been disappointing in 2019,” Brugler writes in his latest top-100 list. “And from a scouting perspective, it can be tough to separate ‘reasons’ and ‘excuses’ when debating the lack of talent and coaching around him. Despite his struggles, Love is still super talented with untapped potential.”
Love (6-foot-4, 225 pounds) has passed for 2,684 yards with 13 TDs and 14 INTs while completing 62 percent of his passes.
“I am telling you, scouts can’t quit this guy,” one NFL scout who has viewed Love this season told Yahoo. “There’s too much talent to ignore. It’ll be a tough sell for some teams because he has not dominated at all. But if you just cut up his best throws, you’d think he was a top-10 pick.”
Scouts are concerned with Love’s flaws, the scout told Edholm, but feel his issues are fixable, noting that Love is eligible for the Senior Bowl as a redshirt junior who’s on track to graduate.