Alabama quarterback Bryce Young won’t throw at the NFL Combine later this week, according to multiple reports. Young will wait until Alabama’s Pro Day (3/23) to participate in throwing drills. Meanwhile, C.J. Stroud, Will Levis, and Anthony Richardson will all throw at the combine, per the same report. Young is firmly entrenched in a four-way battle to become the first quarterback selected in April’s 2023 NFL Draft. Young’s decision gives the field a slight competitive advantage at this moment.
Young, who has been perceived as the No. 1 quarterback in this class by the slightest of margins, is opening the door for other quarterback prospects to gain momentum at the league’s annual pre-draft athletic showcase. Young will undeniably thrive at Alabama’s pro day, but the early portion of March now belongs to his positional competitors.
Stroud, Levis, and Richardson are all expected to wow onlookers while engaging in throwing drills at the NFL Combine. The NFL Combine provides an ideal environment for quarterbacks to showcase their accuracy and arm strength while throwing against air and with no simulated pass rush. Expect the participating quarterbacks to take full advantage of an advantageous opportunity.
Richardson has been training for the combine in Jacksonville, Florida. A clip of Richardson throwing recently went viral on social media due to the amount of zip Richardson is currently putting on the football. Richardson’s athletic tools and natural arm talent is going to lead to highlight-reel throws at the combine. Young will be a spectator. Richardson’s momentum continues to trend toward top-15 pick status.
Levis is another physically gifted quarterback that can gain an upper hand in Indianapolis. Levis’ pre-draft study has been divisive with evaluators struggling to make sense of an up-and-down 2022 campaign after an exciting 2021 season. But there’s no denying that Levis possesses outstanding arm strength. Levis has high-level traits with the build, mobility, and arm talent to thrive in the NFL. Levis will put on a throwing clinic this Saturday at the combine.
In relation to Young, it’s additionally worth following whether or not Alabama’s signal-caller opts to get on the scale in Indianapolis. Young’s weight has been a topic of divisive discussion. A recent report revealed that Young may have weighed as low as 168 pounds during Alabama’s regular-season campaign. That would be viewed as less-than-ideal in the eyes of NFL evaluators who worry about Young’s size and stature and his ability to absorb NFL hits.
As of now, there’s no indication whether or not Young will participate in the NFL Combine’s measurements and weigh-in process. With Young’s decision to bypass throwing drills, it’s worth wondering if Young could opt for a similar decision in relation to the measurements process. Young could bulk up to 200-210 pounds for his pro day before throwing in front of a live crowd, which would be considered a winning weight for the former Alabama standout. But declining opportunities to throw and measure would represent a slight step backward for Young.
Nobody needs to witness Young throw at the combine. It’s not a catastrophically bad decision, but it does aid his draft-hopeful competitors. Young’s determining evaluation largely shifts to Alabama’s pro day.
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