Aidan O’Connell NFL Draft Scouting Report
QB, Purdue Boilermakers
Aidan O’Connell was a two-sport athlete, adding basketball to his high school resume in addition to football. Sports and athletics run in the family. O’Connell’s older brother was a defensive lineman at Wheaton College. Being one of six children helped shape his hardworking character. O’Connell joined Purdue’s roster as a walk-on. He sat out two consecutive seasons before missing most of the next one with a season-ending injury.
O’Connell is a tough and gritty pocket passer. He is a rhythm and timing passer that thrives within the offense’s structure. He attacks the short region of the field with good accuracy and ball placement. He displayed the ability to put the ball where his wide receivers can make a play on it and is capable of leading receivers away from their defenders. O’Connell processes information at a quick rate to get the ball out of his hands in a timely manner in addition to seeing passing lanes open before the intended receiver enters his vision. This allows him to excel in quick passing concepts. He throws a nice, easily-catchable football.
O’Connell has a gunslinger mentality at times but lacks the high-power equipment on his right arm. He does not consistently push the football upfield or on drive throws with optimal velocity. If he overcompensates to add more zip, he loses ball/spin control of the pass. He has solid movement skills in the pocket but is not a threat to hurt defenses with his legs. He should not be relied upon to extend plays out of structure. His game is predicated on getting what is designed. The lack of creativity or second-reaction plays can limit O’Connell’s ceiling at the next level. Pressure can disrupt his process immensely. When dialed up, free runners will speed up his process and force errant passes into compromising windows.
Aidan O’Connell is a gamer without a doubt, but he is not a starting-caliber quarterback. I envision and project him as a long-term backup quarterback, one that could be a spot starter to get your team out of a pinch. Overall, he has an average set of tools and an average skill set.
Top Reasons to Buy In:
Top Reasons For Concern:
- Arm Strength
Size (NFL Combine):
Weight: 213 lbs
Arm Length: 32 1/4”
Hand Size: 9 3/4”
Athletic Testing (TBD):
40-yard Dash: TBD
Vertical Jump: TBD
Broad Jump: TBD
Bench Reps: TBD
Ideal Role: Backup quarterback
Scheme Fit: Quick-passing concepts
TDN Consensus Grade: 69.50/100 (Sixth-Round Value)
- Parson Grade: 69.50/100
Written By: Damian Parson
Exposures: Michigan (2022), Penn State (2022), Illinois (2022), Wisconsin (2022)
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