2019 Contextualized Quarterbacking: West Virginia QB Will Grier

Photo: Denny Medley/USA TODAY Sports

Contextualized Quarterbacking is a charting method that helps break down what to expect from the Draft-eligible quarterbacks. By tracking things like ball placement, depth of target, progressions, and throws into tight windows, the CQ can answer questions about which systems helps certain quarterbacks in certain ways. Next up, West Virginia's Will Grier.

Teams will have the strengths and weaknesses of these players in mind over the course of Senior Bowl week, and we will too, as we put them under the microscope to see if they have what it takes to improve on their deficiencies.

Biggest Strength: Improv Ability

Let's break down improvisation ability into two ideas: the mental and the physical. It's important to understand how skills marry traits with prospects. Is a receiver a deep threat just because he's fast? No: he needs to be able to locate and adjust to the football. Is a safety a good tackler just because he has size? No: he needs to take good angles and approach the appropriate form.

So we have Will Grier: a player with great numbers on the move platform and solid ones from an adjusted platform; a player who is as effective out of the pocket as he is in the pocket; a player who gets better when he's playing after his first read. He is good when things hit the fan.

The traits are the physical tools. Grier has good flexibility throughout his frame to generate velocity when he can't recruit his lower half for power. He also has a variety of arm angles from which he can still remain accurate, which lets him work around pressure and hit players on the run.

The skills are the mental tools, if you will. Grier thrives in chaos, as he has enough athleticism to make the first and second rusher miss, which lets him operate with broken coverage and the full field at his disposal. With enough arm to hit touch and zip throws anywhere in the intermediate areas, Grier regularly wins in the scramble drill, and would benefit from a team that lets him roll out and create on the fly.

 

Biggest Weakness: Risk Management

Grier is a bit of a gunslinger (okay, he's a lot of a gunslinger), and that show sup most clearly when he has a window down the field. He feeds the deep sidelines heavily and isn't afraid of a single deep safety. That's not a great habit to have, especially because Grier doesn't have the velocity to jam those balls in there.

You can see how often he targeted, and how many yards he got, from that deep outside area -- but the placement and accuracy numbers aren't great. Grier throws up too many prayers, which won't get exposed during 1-on-1s in practice, but could come and bite him in 7-on-7s and 11-on-11s.

Grier didn't do much safety manipulation besides taking angled drops when he had two opposite verticals. I'm excited to see him work with crossing routes across the deep middle -- routes I think he can throw well -- and manipulate that safety vertically instead of horizontally. He's gonna keep shooting deep; so let's see how developed he is in that regard.

Goal for Mobile: Be Baker

Not really, but actually.

Grier is a fun personality who loves the sport, and his competitiveness and love for his teammates shines during games (#HornsDown). I think he has some Baker-esque qualities in terms of play style and command of his offense, and he would do well to remind executives of how handily Baker dominated the Senior Bowl last year.

Grier doesn't have Baker's arm strength, is a worse athlete, and doesn't have the great touch to the intermediate level. But he can win in similar ways in a similar offense, and teams will be looking to replicate the early success Baker had in Cleveland -- especially if they're grifting from college's Air Raid ideas, which Grier already executes well.

 

Written By:

Benjamin Solak

NFL Draft Analyst

NFL Draft Analyst for The Draft Network. Deputy Editor of Bleeding Green Nation. Undergrad at UChicago.

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