football-player football-score football-helmet football-ball Accuracy Arm-Strength Balance Ball-Security Ball-Skills Big-Play-Ability Block-Deconstruction Competitive-Toughness Core-Functional-Strength Decision-Making Discipline Durability Effort-Motor Elusivness Explosiveness Football-IQ Footwork Functional-Athleticism Hand-Counters Hand-Power Hand-Technique Hands Lateral-Mobility Leadership Length Mechanics Mobility Pass-Coverage-Ability Pass-Protection Pass-Sets Passing-Down-Skills Pocket-Manipulation Poise Power-at-POA Progressions RAC-Ability Range Release-Package Release Route-Running Run-Defending Separation Special-Teams-Ability-1 Versatility Vision Zone-Coverage-Skills Anchor-Ability Contact-Balance Man-Coverage-Skills Tackling Lifted Logic Web Design in Kansas City clock location phone email play chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up facebook tiktok checkbox checkbox-checked radio radio-selected instagram google plus pinterest twitter youtube send linkedin search arrow-circle bell left-arrow right-arrow tdn-mark filled-play-circle yellow-arrow-circle dark-arrow-circle star cloudy snowy rainy sunny plus minus triangle-down link close drag minus-circle plus-circle pencil premium trash lock simple-trash simple-pencil eye cart
NFL Draft

Zach Wilson Lived Up To The Hype At BYU’s Pro Day

  • The Draft Network
  • March 26, 2021
  • Share

Welcome to draft season, folks. 

On a day where many expected the afternoon to center around the confines of Brigham Young University and the showcase that was Zach Wilson’s pro day, trades rocked the NFL world just moments prior to Wilson’s 60-play script of throws in front of a slew of NFL executives including Jets general manager Joe Douglas, head coach Robert Saleh, and offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur. 

However, as Wilson often has, he quickly grabbed attention, layering throw after throw to every inch of turf the Cougars facility had to offer. For teams in attendance, it was a showcase of an embarrassment of riches that lies within the right arm of Wilson.

At times, it was silly the throws Wilson was making. On the run, off boot-action, in the pocket, off one leg, it didn’t matter—Wilson was electric. It’s really a story of who he is as a prospect, and who he’s ultimately been along. Nothing was abnormal or ever out of sorts. Rather, precision and ball placement trumped all—it’s been that way from the get-go.

Since his arrival on campus, head coach Kalani Sitake knew Wilson was just “different.”

“I think he’s got that ‘it’ factor that a lot of people talk about that you probably can’t gauge and there’s no way to measure,” Sitake said.

“But he’s just got ‘it.’ Leadership ability, also the ability to work hard and put everything together, and then he’s got this moxie on the field that is hard to teach, and I think when you put that all together, it was my job and coach (Aaron) Roderick’s job as quarterbacks coach to allow him to be himself and to be the best version of himself. We saw that a lot of times this year and a lot of times in his career here at BYU and looking forward to seeing him do it on Sundays.”

A future franchise quarterback to be, Friday’s workout was Wilson’s final act to one of the quicker rises to stardom among the elite prospect pool that is the 2021 quarterback class. Names like Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields have become household names for years on end, serving as mainstays in mock drafts years prior to this spring. 

Wilson, however, entered the college ranks not as a 5-star recruit—like Lawrence and Fields—but was rather touted from the mid-major ranks, with offers from Idaho, Weber State, Hawaii, and Fresno State to name a few. There were no SEC offers, one ACC offer, and the interest he did receive from Big Ten schools in Iowa and Minnesota were a thousand miles away from home, and frankly didn’t match his style of play. But now, it’s beyond the logo on the helmet, and Wilson believes he offers as much, and more, than both the former Clemson Tiger in Lawrence and the Ohio State Buckeye in Fields.

“This draft is full of good players, but something that I feel separates me is my passion for the game… I really put a lot of time into what I do. Throughout the years, I’ve really dedicated my life to football.”

It’s a basis of who Wilson is, and will ultimately look to be as a pro, but he understands development is to come, and rookie struggles are just a name of the game. 

“The goal of today was to show why I’m different, and what makes my game special,” Wilson declared. “The game of football and the quarterback position is changing. You want someone who’s athletic and mobile in the pocket and can make all throws and extend and make things happen from different angles. I had some throws today that I wish I had back and throws that I need to clean up, but it’s a part of the process and today was all about solidifying film and showing coaches what they’ve seen from me all year.”

A soon-to-be 22-year-old as the face of an NFL organization is a tough task, no matter how good a prospect may be. But for Wilson, “just a kid from Draper, Utah,” it’s a chance to silence the critics, the doubters, and put into plan a childhood dream long sought after.

“People try to ask me what I do outside of football… I don’t. Football is my life, and it’s everything I got going on. There’s a lot of distractions when you get to this level, but staying level-headed and keeping that chip on my shoulder is what will carry me forward.”

Filed In

Related Articles

Written By

The Draft Network