Greg Cosell is one of my favorite NFL analysts, and he's finally been digging into the quarterbacks in the 2015 NFL draft. Specifically, Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston.
Cosell joined Scott Garceau and Jeremy Conn on CBS Baltimore to talk about those two quarterbacks, among many other things.
"I like Winston more than Mariota, but having said that, I do think Winston has some concerns," Cosell said. "He's a very deliberate player, I think he would have to speed up everything he does. I'm always concerned with deliberate players that there'll be bodies around them far too much and then they hurry. So I think he needs to speed up his game, but he does throw with the natural anticipation although he can be a bit reckless."
"Mariota is a much better athlete, he's a more quick-twitch kid. But it's what you don't see on film with Mariota that makes him a projection, and that's a function of the offense in which he plays, which of course is not his fault, but you just don't see it on film."
He echoed those comments for PhillyMag.com.
"What you don't see are anticipation throws because that's not part of their offense and they aren't necessary; you don't see him throw with people around him because there are rarely people around him; and you don't see tight window throws, which sooner or later - no matter what offense you run in the NFL - you are going to have to make those throws. I've been doing this too long to say he's incapable of that, but you don't see that on film."
Similarly, he talked about Jameis Winston's anticipation throws and his deliberate movement.
"I think Jameis Winston has what you would consider more NFL attributes than Mariota when you watch him on film because he does make the anticipation throws, he's willing to turn it loose into tight windows. He has his own set of issues that need to be addressed - I think he's a little deliberate with everything he does, he needs to be a little bit quicker. He's not a quick-twitch athlete. You see some misreads and poor decisions. But he is willing to turn it loose, he's a confident thrower. I don't think you can coach anticipation, and Winston has it."
His opinions on Mariota fit basically what everyone else has been saying, but Winston being "deliberate" is new. "Deliberate" appears to be code for "slow in his movements." I can see some of that, but I'm not sure it'll be a problem going to the NFL.
Regardless, Cosell's opinions are always at least worth listening to.