2011 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Jake Locker

Jake LockerAfter enjoying a solid junior season in 2009 Locker was considered a possible number one pick in the NFL draft, even if he did come in with many questions unanswered and a few red flags.  However, Locker decided to stay at Washington for his senior year to refine his overall game and make sure no stones were left unturned. 

In 2010, Locker showed minimal if any improvement on the field and may have created more questions than he had going into this year. 

One of the main concerns with him is his accuracy.  While he showed more touch on short to intermediate routes, Locker still struggles with overall accuracy.  His numbers are down from last year, particularly his completion percentage. 

Despite returning 10 starters on offense, including his top five receivers, Locker’s completion percentage fell from 58.2% to 55.4%.  Red flags arose when Locker endured his first real test of the season against a stingy Nebraska defense and he went 4 for 20 and two interceptions in a route. 

All numbers aside, teams will still fall in love with Locker’s potential as a pro quarterback as he has all the tools of an elite signal caller on the next level.  He has exceptional arm strength to make all the throws and he has refined his overall mechanics.  Locker is also an excellent athlete who consistently extends plays with his strength and mobility.  He played in a hybrid pro style-option offense in which he has experience taking snaps from under center. 

Still, Locker needs alot of work as a pocket passer as he still prefers to roll out or scramble outside of the pocket where he has looked most comfortable.  He has shown some improvement in reading through his progressions but at this point he’s still a half-field guy.  He showed minimal improvement in his decision making with the ball and needs to learn when to throw the ball away as he sometimes has too much confidence in his arm. 

The key for Locker’s stock will be his pre-draft interviews and workouts.  Teams want to know how well he knows the game and how he performs when he has talent around him. 

Look for a team in need of a quarterback to take a chance on him in the first round in hopes that he becomes the franchise quarterback many think he can become with additional coaching and repetitions.  Locker must sit at least a year before he is ready to play and will be one of the draft’s biggest boom or bust prospects.

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