Skills that a College
Football Quarterbacks
needs to become a
NFL Quarterback



Projecting college football quarterbacks as a NFL quarterbacks is one of the hardest position to project in the NFL.

Picking a great quarterback can be the difference of going to the Super Bowl and never making the playoffs. It is the most important position on the football field and one the hardest position to project at the next level.

There's a certain criterion's and characteristic that go into selecting a NFL quarterback.

Leadership - NFL scouts look for college football quarterbacks who can take control of the team in the huddle and on the field.

A leader must stand up on the field and in the locker room. The quarterback must be able to pick his team mates up when they are down. Leadership is the most important skill a quarterback must have.

Decision Making - The ability to dissect the defense and make the best decision on where to deliver the football. Knowing when to throw the ball to the open receiver.

Don't force the ball into double or triple coverage and knowing when to throw the football away or pull it down and run with it.

Poise - Mental toughness is something that some players have while other are lacking in that area. A QB needs to be able to feel where pass rush is coming from but he must be able to handle the pass rush without panicking under pressure. Needs to be able to learn how to absorb and take a hit.

Pocket Presence - College football quarterbacks need to be able to avoid the pass rush by moving around in the pocket. Needs to be able to move forward, backwards and side to side in the pocket to buy some time for the receivers to get open.

Size - Most General Managers and scouts have an ideal size of a quarterback to be 6'2" - 6'5" weighing between 220 -230 pounds. Not all QB's will meet the ideal size i.e. Super Bowl MVP New Orleans Saints Drew Bees and Pro Bowl Philadelphia Eagles Mike Vick are under 6'2" and under 220 lbs.

Arm Strength - NFL scouts are looking for the quarterback to throw the football from sideline to sideline. They must have be able to throw the deep out pattern and get the ball to the receiver before the corner-back breaks on the ball for a knock down or interception.

Most college football quarterbacks can throw the ball deep but what separates a quarterback from going to the NFL is being able to throw that deep out pattern like a frozen rope.

Accuracy - How well does the QB put the football in a good spot so that the receiver has a good chance at catching the ball. You have to watch where the QB put the ball.

Are the receivers constantly going down to the ground or jumping up in the air to pull the ball in for a catch? How well does the college football quarterbacks are leading their receivers? Do the QB throw the ball in stride or do the receiver have to wait for the football to get to him?

Short Accuracy - Can the quarterback throw passes that are under 15 yards? Scouts are looking the ball placement and control of the football.

Can the quarterback put the ball over the outside shoulder of the receivers and keep the defenders from jumping the route for a interception? Can the QB deliver the ball so that the receiver can run after the catch.

Deep Accuracy - How accurate is the ball on passes that are thrown over 25 yards. Is the football delivered in stride so that the receiver can run under it? Do college football quarterbacks lead their receivers to the sideline when needed?

Touch - Most teams want a quarterback with a strong arm, but during the game a QB must use his finesse over brute strength.

College football quarterbacks must be able to throw the ball over the linebackers and corner backs head and down into the receiver's hands before the safety has a chance to break on the ball, knock it down or intercept it.

Mechanics - The QB needs to be able to drop back after the snap from center and get set to throw the ball. He needs to be able to drop back in the 3, 5 and 7 step drop. Once he's set he must be able to set his feet and plant his feet while throwing and not throw off his back foot.

Delivery/Release - College football quarterbacks must be able to drop back, get set in the pocket and get rid of the football quickly.

They need to be able to keep the ball up near their ears, not down by their hip when throwing the ball. You need to see a good over hand motion, when throwing the ball, no sidearm motion.

Mobility - QB's must have be elusive and able to move in or outside the pocket to give their receiver more time or to run for a first down or positive yards.

Locating receivers - QB's must be able to find his second and third receivers when his number 1 receiver is covered. They can't lock on one receiver, defenses tend to watch for tendencies like that and they will make a QB miserable all day.

I think the most important attributes college football quarterbacks must have are leadership, arm strength, accuracy, poise and decision making. If they have those traits every thing else can be taught over time.