Drew Lock looks the part of a young, franchise quarterback. He measures in at 6-foot-4, can throw the ball a mile, and plays with the swagger NFL teams want in their franchise quarterbacks. But questions remain about whether he can grow out of the inconsistencies that plagued him during his career at Missouri. Lock began to answer those doubts in January with a strong Senior Bowl performance -- both during the week of practice and the game. Yes, Duke's Daniel Jones was named the game's MVP, but Lock was the best passer on the field.
As a freshman in 2015, Lock started the final eight games of Missouri's season. In 2016 he led the SEC in passing yards, and a season later he helped the Tigers to their first bowl appearance since 2014. Each year, his completion percentage and touchdowns increased, but instead of declaring for the draft he returned for his senior season.
The good news is that Lock saved the best for last. After a slow start under a new offensive coordinator in 2018 -- Missouri started 3-3 and Lock had 12 touchdowns, six interceptions and completed fewer than 50 percent of his throws in those losses -- he went 5-2 and tossed 16 touchdowns against just two picks. And in those five wins Lock completed at least 64 percent of his attempts.
Among all FBS quarterbacks, Lock ranked 13th in Pro Football Focus' adjusted-completion percentage, and was top 12 in adjusted completion vs. the blitz, adjusted completion vs. pressure and deep pass adjusted completion percentage.
Combine/pro day results
32 1/2 inches
Lock took part in throwing drills at the combine:
Strengths: Lock reminds some talent evaluators of Matthew Stafford. He reminds us of Jay Cutler. Wherever you are on the spectrum, the main takeaway is undeniable: He has a rocket right arm, and that is his biggest asset. He's also an extremely accurate deep-ball thrower who plays with confidence.
Early in the season, when Lock was struggling in a new system, he flashed glimpses of just how good he can be. Here he is against Alabama, throwing a laser to the back of the end zone.
Weaknesses: Lock's hands measured just nine inches, which was the smallest among all quarterbacks at the Senior Bowl. Sam Darnold also had small hands and he had a solid rookie season, and Lock's undersized hands were never an issue on the field and NFL teams likely won't ding him for it. More importantly, Lock struggled with short and intermediate throws, some of which can be blamed on poor footwork. He also struggled to go through his progressions, which is not an unusual complaint about young quarterbacks.
Matthew Stafford. Lock is a cannon-armed pocket passer capable of making the jaw-dropping throws down or across the field who plays the game with "shooter's amnesia." If he makes a bad decision or throws a pick, it doesn't impact his aggressiveness on the next play or series. He can effortlessly throw from a variety of arm angles, and the arrow is pointing up in terms of his pocket patience and presence, although hiccups in those areas are still present. He won't run away from many NFL linebackers but can pick up yards with his feet when needed, and his accuracy downfield is more impressive than his touch on short passes. Sounds a lot like Stafford.
NFL teams in play to draft Lock
Some teams will like Lock more than Dwayne Haskins, and perhaps even Kyler Murray. At the top of that list: The Broncos. General manager John Elway has been reportedly "smitten" with Lock dating back to the 2018 season. Elway was also seen near the quarterbacks group all week at the Senior Bowl.
After whiffing on Brock Osweiler, Paxton Lynch and most recently Case Keenum, it wouldn't be unreasonable to think that he could aggressively pursue his next face of the franchise. As we mentioned, Lock reminds us of Jay Cutler -- both in terms of arm strength, athleticism, and sometimes-suspect decision making. Fun fact: Cutler was taken 11th overall in 2006 by the Broncos though Elway didn't join the front office until 2011.
Dolphins: Miami has moved on from Ryan Tannehill, replaced him with Ryan Fitzpatrick ... and they still need a franchise quarterback. It seems more likely that they'll wait until 2020 for Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert or Jake Fromm but if Lock is on the board when the Dolphins select at No. 13 they'll have a tough decision to make.
Redskins: Another team in dire need of a quarterbacks. Case Keenum is the short-term solution but Washington has the No. 15 pick, which means they could have a shot at Lock.
Raiders: Oakland has three first-rounders, starting at No. 4, but there have been no reports linking them to any quarterback, though Murray would make the most sense. If Lock slips out of Round 1, the Raiders could consider him at No. 35.