No player helped their draft stock more at the Senior Bowl than Colin Kaepernick. People knew he had gaudy rushing and passing numbers from his time at Nevada, but seeing him run away from bigger conference defenders while also showcasing consistent accuracy forced many to reconsider his classification as a limited small-conference star.

I admit to having never heard of the kid before the first Senior Bowl practice. It took about 15 seconds of watching for my jaw to drop. On one play, he rolled to his right, saw his receivers were covered and took off up-field with what looked like giraffe strides. Kaepernick looked more than fast, he looked special. Superior running quarterbacks are only worth attention if they can also toss the rock. Kaepernick’s accuracy far exceeded that of fellow QBs Jake Locker and Ricky Stanzi. His throwing motion and mechanics are far less-than-ideal. He has a tendency to sling the ball in a short-armed motion instead of coming over the top. It is worth noting that many analysts see that as a major issue.

When a QB is consistently hitting his targets with high velocity, whether he’s on the run or in the pocket, I start caring less about perfect mechanics. What I see is a player who many teams will pass on because he’s from a small conference with a bad throwing motion, but has the potential to be a franchise QB. His completion percentage increased every season (53.8% as a Freshman to 64.9% as a Senior). He boasts an 82/24 TD/INT ratio. Compare that to hometown favorite Jake Locker who came in at 53/35. That tells me Kaepernick made good decisions, and scored TDs. Now, add in his running. He rushed for over 1000 yards in three of his four seasons, and scored 20 more TDs on the ground in his Senior season alone. He scored 59 TDs on the ground in his four years, compared to 29 for Locker. All together, that’s 141 TDs through the air and on the ground in four seasons. Say what you want about his level of competition. Those are crazy numbers.

The Seahawks are a team that would do well to use their picks on the best talent available. It’s unlikely there will be a perfect match of value to pick in the first round at the QB position. If a player with Kaepernick’s upside is available in later rounds, the team will need to seriously consider using a pick on him. He, like Locker, will be a project. Most have him as a 3rd round pick. The Seahawks are without one of those. With the team picking toward the end of the 2nd round, and the QB position at a premium, he might be a consideration there.

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5 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    A well regarded draft guru (can't remember which one)recently posted in a blog that the concern over Kaepernicks long armed & loopy throws are NOT a hugh issue. His main point was that Kaepernick's arm speed made up for the slightly enlongated windup, making his release as fast as what would be considered good by other QB's. This was further verified, per the guru, that Kaepernick had the strongest arm at the combine as measured by radar guns.

  2. Anonymous

    Another amazing Kaepernick statistic. I don't believe he ever missed a game, starting 37 games and running for over 4000 yards without injury? Insane!

    Locker by comparison has had: neck injury, ham-string, broken thumb and a hip problem that he played with for several games.

    Most guru's say the most important aspect of a QB's makeup lies between his ears. Kaepernick is a smart, humble, hard working kid that lovesw the game, what else could you want?

  3. Anonymous

    no he hasn't suffered as many injuries as Locker, but lets not completely write Locker off. he has shown amazing resilience and toughness and a incomparable willingness to compete. not saying he's better though.

  4. Anonymous

    seattle please draft keapernick or jake locker you guys past on sanchez dont pass on one of these guys thank you.