Updated Nov. 20, 2019
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
The top of the 2020 NFL Draft was shaken up last Saturday when Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered a devastating hip injury. His season is over, and his status as the top quarterback prospect for the 2020 NFL Draft is now in question. Now that the NFL has had a few days to process the injury and see the timetable for recovery, WalterFootball.com reached out to sources from around the league to conduct a survey. We have responses from two general managers, a director of player personnel, a couple directors of college scouting, some national scouts, and some area scouts.
The first question we asked those sources was: What range of the draft do you think Tua Tagovailoa will go after the injury? Six sources said they thought Tagovailoa would still go in the first round and likely in the top half of the first round because quarterbacks are too valuable to pass on. They all thought Tagovailoa would be go as a top-20 choice.
One director of player personnel thought Tagovailoa could slip to late in the first round or early in the second round, but they said they personally were not as high on Tagovailoa to begin with. This source believes Tagovailoa benefited greatly from the talent around him, including an all-star cast of wide receivers. Multiple sources, including two general managers, thought it was too early to give any kind of range and it would be completely dependent on the medical checks leading up to the 2020 NFL Draft. Still, the majority response was that Tagovailoa would be a first-round pick and be off the board ahead of the playoff teams.
The second survey question we asked team sources was: Who do you think will be the first quarterback taken? Five sources, including two general managers, said they thought LSU's Joe Burrow would be the first quarterback taken. Two sources said they thought Oregon's Justin Herbert would be the first quarterback taken.
Here is what one director of college scouting said about how the first-round quarterbacks will come off the board, "It's hard to say how they will come off the board. It's taster's choice when it comes to the quarterbacks. There's no clear-cut No. 1 in my opinion. This group is similar to the 2018 group of Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson. The circumstance of the coaches, personnel, team need, and system will dictate how they fall."