2023 Senior Bowl: Quarterbacks

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2023 Senior Bowl Quarterbacks

By Walt – @walterfootball
Feb. 5, 2023

The Senior Bowl tends to have a big impact on where players are drafted, given that NFL general managers are getting a close look at these prospects for the first time. This is especially magnified for quarterbacks. Philip Rivers, Justin Herbert, Daniel Jones, Carson Wentz, Deshaun Watson, Joe Flacco and E.J. Manuel all enjoyed outstanding Senior Bowl performances in the past and had improved their draft stock as a result.

I do this every year: I’m going to take a look at how each of the signal-callers performed in the Senior Bowl and what each of their draft range is.

Unfortunately, I can’t ever recall such an underwhelming group of quarterbacks at the Senior Bowl. Only one, Hendon Hooker, stands a good chance of being chosen in the first three rounds, and he was sidelined due to injury. The next-rated prospect, Jaren Hall, was also out with an injury.

Tyson Bagent, Shepherd
I’m listing these quarterbacks alphabetically, but while Tyson Bagent is the first player on this list, he was the last to see play. He entered at the end of the third quarter during the 2-minute drill. He moved the chains well down the field with some well-placed checkdowns, but was nearly intercepted on a late throw. The defender caught the ball, but only had one foot inbounds.

Bagent was able to get the chains moving again on a later drive. He made a nice conversion to his running back while getting hit, but disaster struck in the red zone. He escaped pressure and fired a pass, but the ball was picked.

Bagent completed most of his passes, going 17-of-22 for 138 yards and the pick. The stats look good, aside from the interception, but most of Bagent’s completions were checkdowns. Bagent might be a late-round pick, but could go undrafted as well.

2023 NFL Draft Projection: 6th round-FA

Malik Cunningham, Louisville
You never want to see someone get hurt, especially in these all-star games. Unfortunately, that’s what happened to Malik Cunningham, who injured his shoulder while trying to chase down a defender who intercepted him. Cunningham was knocked out for the rest game.

Cunningham threw just five passes, completing three of them for 48 yards. He nearly fired a touchdown, as he unleashed a dart to his tight end, who stepped out of bounds inches shy of the goal line.

Cunningham also showed off his scrambling ability, running five times for 22 yards and a touchdown. Cunningham’s interception occurred as a result of him getting hit as he released the ball.

2023 NFL Draft Projection: Rounds 3-5

Max Duggan, TCU
Max Duggan led his team to the national championship this past year, but his performance in this game wasn’t nearly close to what he did versus Michigan in the semi-final.

Duggan made one nice throw in this game when he converted a fourth down by fitting the ball through a tight window. Duggan, however, attempted too many inaccurate passes. He began by shortarming a pass with pressure in his face. He then threw the ball behind his receiver and overshot an open target for a touchdown. He also took a sack because he held the ball way too long.

Duggan finished 4-of-9 for only 26 yards. He has a shot to be a mid-round pick, but this performance did not help.

2023 NFL Draft Projection: Round 4-6

Jake Haener, Fresno State
Jake Haener was named the MVP of the 2023 Senior Bowl, though a major reason for that was a touchdown late in the game when the other team stopped trying very hard. Haener launched a deep bomb to receiver Michael Wilson, who caught the 44-yarder amid some of the worst coverage you’ll ever see from a pair of defensive backs.

This pass allowed Haener to finish with some solid-looking numbers: 12-of-19 for 139 yards and a touchdown. However, the stats could have been even better had Haener not missed some throws. and not been victimized by an obvious offensive pass interference that negated another touchdown. However, Haener had an ugly stretch in this game where he fired three consecutive passes behind his target.

That said, if there was any quarterback who helped himself in this game, it was Haener. The Fresno State product has a chance to be chosen in the final rounds.

2023 NFL Draft Projection: Round 6-FA

Clayton Tune, Houston
We didn’t get to see much of Clayton Tune. He started for the American team, but was pulled after a couple of drives.

Tune’s numbers look decent, as he went 9-of-12 for 70 yards. He should have completed 10 passes, but running back Kenny McIntosh dropped a pass in the flat. Conversely, Tune also should have been intercepted, but the defensive back dropped a telegraphed throw.

Tune is coming off a great senior year, though this performance was likely neutral for him. He figures to be drafted at some point on Day 3.

2023 NFL Draft Projection: Round 4-6

2023 Senior Bowl Home
2023 Senior Bowl Game Recap
2023 Senior Bowl Quarterback Analysis
2023 Senior Bowl NFL Mock Draft
2023 Senior Bowl Rumors: Friday
2023 Senior Bowl: Thursday's American Team Practice Report
2023 Senior Bowl: Thursday's National Team Practice Report
2023 Senior Bowl Rumors: Thursday
2023 Senior Bowl: Wednesday's American Team Practice Report
2023 Senior Bowl: Wednesday's National Team Practice Report
2023 Senior Bowl Rumors: Wednesday
2023 Senior Bowl: Tuesday's American Team Practice Report
2023 Senior Bowl: Tuesday's National Team Practice Report
2023 Senior Bowl Rumors: Tuesday
2023 Senior Bowl Rumors: Monday

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