Pros: Has big size and a big arm. Has excellent zip and has a lot of velocity when throwing downﬁeld. Shows nice footwork in the pocket and able to step up and deliver throw.
Cons: Has a very long release, where he dips the ball low and brings it over top like a baseball pitch. Lacks touch and will put too much heat on his short throws. Also lacks accuracy. Because of elongated release, gives defense time to bat down a lot of his passes. Holds onto the ball too long and doesn't make good decisions. Will lock onto targets and needs to do a better job seeing the ﬁeld. Lacks mobility and not a threat to run, and doesn't do a good job throwing on the run.
Overview: Cantwell has that long Leftwich-like baseball release. Everything that comes out is a fastball. And unless he changes it, there will be signiﬁcant challenges for him ahead. Only one year of starting experience after sitting behind Brian Brohm the past three years and didn't look all that competent in Kragthorpe's offense despite a year under his belt. Had an 8-8 career record at Louisville, completing 58.2% of his passes in those games, as well as having a TD-INT ratio of 22:21 in those games as well.
NFL Forecast: It's going to be tough for him to stick in the NFL. You like to give him chances because of his big size and arm, but he'll need to be protected a lot. And he's at least three years from being mentally ready to run an NFL offense to efﬁciency. So unless you can sit him on the bench for that long, and all the while tweak his mechanics then maybe he has a chance. But really one of those players that I doubt gets such an opportunity in the pros, and as such will have to ﬁnd a home at a lower level of competition.
ATL Forecast: He's a developmental guy that would be hard-pressed to keep on the roster over the current alternatives. He might have better upside than some of these guys, but he's not going to live up to it at any point in the near future. Really doesn't have much of a future in Atlanta.
Value: Because of his mechanics and other issues, he's too raw to merit being drafted. Sign him and see if he can push for a spot in camp.
Scouting Reports of quarterbacks in the 2009 NFL draft.
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