An Early Look: Connor Cook, Michigan State

Even though the NFL Draft was almost a month ago, it is never too early to start taking a look at the prospects for next year’s draft and get a head start on the NCAA Football Season. In this article, we will be taking an early look at QB Connor Cook. Cook is a 6'2", 220 pound, Redshirt Senior at Michigan State. I felt like it was a good idea for Cook to not enter the Draft last year because, at the time, he still had some issues to work on to help improve his craft. I watched a few games of Cook in 2013 and in all honesty, it was hard to watch. He was a very raw and inexperienced quarterback who made mistakes. Fast forward to the 2014 season, and he had greatly improved, but still had some parts of his game he needed to work on. The law of averages tells me that by the end of his senior season, Cook will have developed even more. Here are my preseason notes on Connor Cook: Strengths He has great athletic ability to get out of the pocket and avoid being sacked. He has greatly improved his mechanics from his first year of starting. He's not afraid to stand in the pocket and make a throw. He spreads the ball around very evenly to his receivers and different spots on the field. He has the rare ability to go through his reads and progressions, sees the whole field, and has a decent enough arm to make all necessary throws. He puts nice touch on the ball to where only his guys can get to it. He is very accurate on deep throws and doesn't often miss. Weaknesses He does have some hesitation issues. He seems to have trouble figuring out where he wants to go with the ball. He tries to complete passes while he is getting hit, which often leads to interceptions. He doesn't really have a tight spiral on his passes, so the wind catches the ball (this makes me curious about hand size). His footwork is still a little sloppy but is much better than when he first started. He tries to force the ball into places it shouldn't go. He could have better pocket awareness to know when to get out of Dodge. He needs to know when to throw the ball away or take a sack. He needs to get more air under the ball. Too many passes are batted down at the line of scrimmage, and too many balls end up in the dirt. I charted several of Cook's games and found an interesting piece of information. Cook does not seem to have a favorite receiver; he spreads the ball around to every player a couple of times a game. Watch Manning or Rodgers toss the pigskin and you will notice they do the same thing - distribute the ball evenly to everyone. Keep in mind this is a preseason report, so the point of scouting now is to get an idea of how the players play the game and what they should be improving on from the previous year. Cook still has a lot to work on heading into 2015, but I feel he will greatly improve from 2014. As of now I have Cook listed as a 3rd Rounder. If he can have a great season and improve his mechanics, I can see him easily moving to the 2nd Round. Austin is a graduate of National Football Post's Introduction to Scouting and Scouting Boot Camp. Reach him by e-mail at

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