by Greg Gabriel
December 27, 02013
If there is one player who has created a lot of conversation in the draftnik community this year, it’s Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch. One group feels he has a chance to be an NFL quarterback. Another feels he will have to switch positions in order to have a chance. Yet another group feels he isn’t even a prospect. Not that I want to sit on the fence, but I’m somewhere in between the first two groups.
Lynch is a fifth-year senior and a two-year starter at Northern. He has become one of the most productive passers in school history throwing for over 6200 yards and 51 touchdowns. He has rushed for over 4300 yards and 48 TDs. The bulk of those numbers have come the last two seasons, leading the Huskies to a 24–4 record.
Lynch does not have ideal QB size. He will measure in the 6003 – 212 pound area, and I estimate that he will run around 4.60. He is well built and strong to go along with good to very good overall athleticism. While he is not a burner, he has quick feet, a burst, and very good body control and change of direction.
Jordan leads a read option type offense and will throw the ball 25–30 times a game. He also carries the ball himself 20–25 times a game. As a passer, he shows adequate arm strength. He can throw the ball 50+ yards downfield. There are QB’s in the NFL who don’t have Lynch’s arm strength. I don't like that he doesn’t consistently throw a tight ball. While the majority of his throws are tight, there are still too many that are loose spirals. A loose ball has no chance of cutting the wind. I noticed that he throws a tighter, higher velocity ball when he throws on the run.
Lynch has fairly good mechanics. He has a compact overhand delivery and a quick release. He also shows good accuracy and ball placement with his throws. He is patient, can see the field, and find an open receiver. He does a good job going through a progression, and he is not one to force a throw. He has thrown only 14 interceptions in the last two seasons.
What he does as well as any QB in the country is avoid the rush, extend plays with his feet, and run. When he decides to run, he is more like a running back than a QB. He is quick-footed and elusive and runs with power. He is an instinctive runner and can make people miss both in tight and in the open.
The one thing a quarterback has to have in order to be successful is leadership. Lynch is an outstanding leader and has excellent football character. This will go a long way in determining his success at the next level. If I was doing the drafting, I would draft Lynch as a QB and let him show me he can’t play QB before I would have him switch positions. He lacks ideal height and doesn’t have a cannon for an arm, but he is a winner and has outstanding intangibles. While I don’t see him as a future starter in the NFL, I do see a player that can be a more than adequate backup. The team that drafts Lynch has to have a plan for him, as he is different than most QBs. I dare say that if he was 6’2 or taller, we would be talking about him as a third round type guy and not a late rounder. Above all else, he is a football player!
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