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Conventional Wisdom and Kyle Trask

One of many experimental iterations ...

Boone

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I'm going to ask a question that I already know 'the answer' to.

Why is no one talking about Washington drafting Florida QB Kyle Trask?

Here's the 'conventional wisdom':
  • Trask is slow and immobile, traits that are anathema for the modern NFL QB
  • Trask is a throwback pocket passer who is ill-suited to the RPO-style game that most NFL teams are implementing
  • Trask has a weak arm
  • Trask is a subpar athlete
  • Trask is a poor fit for a Scott Turner offense
The purpose of my thread is not to discount or disprove any or all of these 'facts', although I certainly will try to offer a more balanced perspective. But every pre-draft period has one thing in common. And that common thread is that so-called 'draft experts', pundits, and fans deem certain QBs sure-fire NFL stars in waiting, and other's as pre-ordained disasters. And every single year, those prognostications and confident predictions are proven horribly wrong.

Could everyone be wrong on Kyle Trask? Let's take a closer look at him.


First and foremost, Kyle Trask is an imposing QB. 6' 5" tall and 240 lbs, he is a big dude and that used to be viewed as a significant positive for NFL rookie QBs. Trask is not an RPO QB, but the claims he is 'slow' are relative, as he was able to run a 4.98 40 yd dash during a recent pro day. While no one would claim that Kyle Trask has the strongest arm in this NFL draft class, he certainly has adequate arm strength. His average yds/completion in 2020 was more than 10 yds - higher than consensus #1 pick Trevor Lawrence (and the 8th highest average of 235 draft-eligible QBs). I think it's hard to make the argument that Trask is just a 'dink and dunker' who may only be suited for a West Coast offense that puts a priority on the short passing game.

Even considering the NFL's shift to more mobile dual threat QBs, it is surprising that Trask is seemingly getting so little consideration, in light of his 2020 Heisman candidate-worthy season at Florida. Critics will quip that there's irony in Trasks record-shattering 2020 season, since the guy whose single season passing yard record Trask eclipsed was Danny Wuerffel. But Trask, who has waited patiently most of his high school and college career to get the starter's nod, had a truly impressive 2020 campaign.

301 completions on 437 attempts.
68.9% completion rate.
4,283 passing yards.
43 TDs.
8 INTs.
Season passer rating of 180.

Those are gaudy numbers against some stout SEC competition.

Now, Washington fans should understand from recent history, that looking at a single season and evaluating a QB prospect is a risky proposition. But Trask had similar production in 2019 while sharing QBing duties with Feleipe Franks and Emory Jones, completing 67% of his passes for nearly 3,000 yds with 25 TDs and 7 INTs.

Most scouting reports concede - Trask is a very accurate passer with excellent ball placement ability, who is able to skillfully read defenses, play from under center or shotgun, and who is an outstanding decision-maker.

Critics will undermine Trask's 2020 accomplishments by giving credit to Florida TE Kyle Pitts, or by suggesting that Florida QBs always look good due to that school's traditional focus on the passing game. But a fair assessment reveals that Kyle Trasks calm, capable QBing and decisive accurate passing was a central to the offense's success in 2019 and 2020.

Is Kyle Trask a fit for a Scott Turner offense? I've asked this question myself, and my current answer is, I don't know. At a passing glance, perhaps not. Turner's offense seems ideally suited for QBs in the Alex Smith/Kyle Allen/Taylor Heinicke mold, guys who create a dilemma for the defense with their ability to use their feet when necessary. While Trask did show an ability to use his big body to pick up short yardage when needed, he is most definitely not a threat to beat you with his feet. On the other hand, Trask is poised in the pocket, has good awareness of pressure, can read defenses, and makes great decisions with the ability to deliver the ball on time and with accuracy. Those attributes are essential for QB success in almost any NFL offense.

In our recent podcast, we spent a lot of time talking about Kellen Mond, who is certainly an intriguing prospect, and one who absolutely fits what we think Scott Turner covets in a QB in his offense. But should the team not pick up Mond, Trask may be the most talented Day 2 QB still on the table.

Would Washington draft him as a potential future starter?

One final thought. What other teams might be most interested in Kyle Trask in the upcoming draft? It's rumored those teams include the Pittsburgh Steelers, the New Orleans Saints, and the New England Patriots - not too shabby in terms of teams that know what's required at that position and have made a living off of being right. I think it's possible Washington may also be evaluating whether this underrated QB could be an option.

It will be interesting to see where Trask goes and which teams try to get him.
 

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Bulldog

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Really it's not athletic ability but the ability to process information quickly that makes an NFL quarterback. Great athletes have failed at the qb position regularly coming out of college. So have guys with cannon arms who just can never seem to make use of them to great effect in the league.

Trask is interesting for that reason. Before, he shot up the draft boards I would have put Mac Jones in that category as well. He's more mobile but still depends upon reading the field and making the right throw(s) as opposed to looking at color cards on the sidelines like Dwayne Haskins :p
 

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I THINK that movement the team has gone in leads me to believe that the emphasis is on speed and mismatches. I don't THINK the QB is exempt from that but wtf do I really know lol?

I will say that the ability to diagnose a defense and process quickly CAN be more effective to an offense than physical ability... that being said they could opt for a guy like that. Get the ball out, west coast style that is predicated on pocket control and pre-snap decision making. I think if we're going to consider Trask, than we better be looking OT in the first and OG at some point in this draft.
 

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Dan Marino used to get the ball out quicker than any other qb in the NFL and that allowed Miami at times to cheat on the OL in terms of investment.

The question with a highly mobile quarterback is whether he looks to pass and make the correct play first or whether he simply pulls it down and runs as a first instinct even if receivers are open downfield.

Even a physical freak like Cam Newton has enjoyed a limited NFL prime due to the pounding he has taken running the ball. In earlier years he also could throw the ball down the field with a cannon arm too, but those organized and improvisational runs definitely cost him in re career longevity.

If we draft a quarterback high I want more an Aaron Rodgers who in his prime does it all on the field vs. a guy that is known more as an impact player hitting the edge than hitting the TE in the end zone.

A guy like Trask is a compromise on that ideal. But so is Trey Lance.
 

Win4us

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From the video he seems to escape pressure alright, but yeah he won’t be breaking any rushing records. I could see him having success in the league. Being able to make snap decisions with ball placement is a fantastic starting point. As Boone mentioned he’s a big kid and pretty accurate, give him a solid line with the WFT weapons and they’re cooking with gas.

Darrisaw in the 1st and Trask in the 2nd....yes please
 

Boone

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Yeah - I mean these are highlight videos, but to me, he seems to have very good pocket awareness and is pretty shifty in terms of buying himself time to throw. I think a lot of draft assessments are RPO biased in a big way. There are still plenty of pocket passers at the top of NFL QB ranks. Yes - dual threat QBs are the trend. But you don't have to have Patrick Mahommes or Russell Wilson level mobility to be effective.
 

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I would imagine that if we were to be serious about a guy like Trask... Rivera and Turner would need to go back and look at the Pittsburgh Steelers offense when Big Ben was on his ascent and go from there. Like I said before there would HAVE to be a major investment to the O-line over the next 18 months.

That said, the more I let it sink it, a guy like Trask could thrive with the current offensive playmakers we have. Quick decisions, solid pre-snap diagnosis, and the ability to make the right throws. I will say his arm will limit the ability to make the big play over the top, but I think there is enough there that he can diagnose an opportunity and get it out early enough for a play to get explosive... what I mean is Haskins was the type of player that McLaurin needed to be 'open' before he would pull the trigger down field and he had enough of an arm to wait that long and get it out in front. Trask likely will need to anticipate McLaurin winning the route and get it out before he's actually open, but that allows him to pull that trigger 10 - 12 yards shorter so the home run arm is not necessarily the priority in that case.
 

Boone

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I think the biggest plus with Trask that mitigates him not having the top NFL arm in this class is his incredible ball placement ability. He can put it on a dime.
 

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I really don't care if my QB can outrun a linebacker. In the pass-rush heavy game today, I DO want him to be quick enough to pick up 2-3 first downs a game on good decision scrambles.

Far and away, though, I want him to have feel/escapability in the pocket, know when and how to step up or drift, how to buy time while keeping his eyes downfield, and know where to go with the ball. Maybe even throw a guy open once in a while. Gimme a smart QB, with a decent arm, who doesn't have lead feet, and I'll take my chances.
 

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That's a hell of an OP, by the way, Master Boone.
 

Boone

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I think we’re drafting a QB in this draft. It may not be the dramatic move up to the top 10 a lot of fans want. But we can’t keep going forward with aging temporary vets. If they really like Mond, or Trask, or one of the other less heralded guys, bet we draft one of them.
 

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At least this regime has been smart and acquired a veteran in Fitzpatrick with no trade assets and limited cap space taken.

I am glad Rivera is here now because he worked for Andy Reid and knows how he works.

Reid was able to unload Donovan McNabb and Alex Smith on us in moves that allowed him to get picks and free up salary cap space to be a contender.

We won't be doing that again.

I agree with the feeling here that we are going to grab a quarterback once we see who falls in Round 1 and what the draft picture looks like.

I could see a move from #19 to a few moves earlier or a move up to the late first if a guy falls far enough.

But we aren't moving into the top 3-4 picks. Not in the cards.
 

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