Justin Fields is a highly athletic quarterback who started at the University of Georgia, serving as a backup for Jake Fromm as a freshman. He would go on to transfer to Ohio State, where he excelled as a starter and really showed his capability to be a franchise quarterback at the next level. The sense is that he’s in play for teams picking in the top five of the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft.
Fields has all the natural ability you look for in a QB with great arm talent, an ability to create when the play breaks down and electric running ability. It’s very easy to fall in love with a quarterback like Fields due to his playmaking ability, but there are certain things that he will need to clean up to truly be a top notch QB at the NFL level.
Let’s take a closer look at a player the Falcons could consider if they’re exploring a quarterback at #4.
Justin Fields Scouting Report
Player Height/Weight: 6’3” – 228 lbs
Games Watched: vs. Wisconsin (2019), vs. FAU(2019), vs. NorthWestern(2020), vs. Michigan St. (2020)
· Strong arm with the ability to make all throws on the field
· Well built and sturdy frame to hold up to NFL play
· On target with throws on the move to his left or his right with great velocity
· Precise with throws at all levels on the field
· Perfectly capable of throwing with anticipation and best when throwing in rhythm
· Has a quick release when decisive and can change his release point when/if needed
· Highly competitive on the field with evident football intelligence
· Adequate decision maker in RPO plays
· Will scorch defenses that decide to play in man due to his running ability
· Highly poised player that has the ability to take a game over
· Although mobile and highly dangerous in the open field, pocket mobility needs work
· Needs to work on his internal clock to feel and recognize pressure
· Questionable decision making against the blitz
· Good throwing on the run, but needs to learn to reset his feet and be accurate when forced to move in the pocket
· Needs to keep his eyes down the field when moving in the pocket consistently
· After his first read, has the tendency to improvise instead of going through progressions
Justin Fields is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting prospects in this quarterback class. There’s no denying his overall skillset, and he can be a menace to opposing defenses. He shows a bit of overconfidence in his arm when throwing into traffic, as all quarterbacks do at the college level, but he has a cannon of an arm that can make all throws on the field. There’s very little here that stands out as a major concern.
There are some technique-based issues when it comes to how he looks against pressure and how he sticks to the script, but of course that can be overcome with time and repetition. Fields is a rhythm passer with great speed, so he has plenty to work with for what Coach Arthur Smith likes to do offensively. Given his skillset and intelligence, he could certainly be drafted at 4th overall, if available, by the Falcons. When you take into account Field’s opportunities to grow when it comes to pocket movement and in game decision making, it would benefit him to learn learn under Matt Ryan for a season or two.
That little bit of time behind a proven quarterback may be all Fields needs to be the franchise option he’s projected to be in the NFL. If Atlanta’s choosing at #4 and Fields is the best quarterback available, expect them to at least be tempted.