Has good combination of size and arm strength. Flashes good zip to thread the needle at times. Shows some touch on some of his deeper throws. Is a strong, physical player that isn't afraid to lower the shoulder and fight for extra yards as a runner. Flashes some ability to extend the play and step up in the pocket.
Accuracy and placement aren't great, and makes his receivers work a bit too hard at times for the ball. Throws behind his receivers on crossing and in routes. Doesn't consistently show anticipation on throws, waiting for his receivers to come out of their breaks. Double clutches at times, not trusting his eyes. He'll stare down his first read quite a bit, and can panic at times when he's forced to go to his second progression. Will get happy feet at times in the pocket, and holds onto the ball too long. He'll take too many sacks because he waits until the last possible moment to get rid of the ball. Will key on the rush, bringing his eye level down. Doesn't move or slide that well within the pocket and tends to be a bit of a statue. Doesn't always show great footwork, throwing off his back foot and fading away on throws. Not great throwing on the move because he doesn't do a great job squaring his shoulders on the edge.
Foles looks the part of an NFL quarterback with his combo of size and arm strength. He improved as a senior, particularly with his decision making. But at times it looks like the speed of the game can be a bit too fast for him. He's a good QB, but he doesn't really wow you. But he has a chance to be a good backup at the next level, and with added development might make a decent starter. He went to Michigan State initially in the same class as Kirk Cousins, but transferred to Arizona in search of more playing time after being behind Cousins and Brian Hoyer at MSU. He attended the same high school of Westlake in Austin, Texas as Drew Brees, and lost in the state championship game as a senior.
2011 GAMES WATCHED:
(9/8) at Oklahoma State: Short (<10 yds): 28 of 36 (78%), 179 yds (5.0 YPA), 75 YAC, 0 TDs, 0 INTs, 2 poor throws, 0 drops; Deep (>10 yds): 8 of 12 (67%), 208 yds (17.3 YPA), 54 YAC, 1 TD, 0 INTs, 1 poor throw, 0 drops
(9/17) vs. Stanford: Short 18 of 20 (90%), 112 yds (5.6 YPA), 75 YAC, 1 TD, 0 INTs, 1 poor throw, 0 drops; Deep: 6 of 14 (43%), 127 yds (9.1 YPA), 29 YAC, 0 TDs, 0 INTS, 3 poor throws, 1 drop;
(10/20) vs. UCLA: Short: 13 of 13 (100%), 81 yds (6.2 YPA), 27 YAC, 2 TDs, 0 INT, 0 poor throws, 0 drops; Deep: 9 of 14 (64%), 161 yds (11.5 YPA), 20 YAC, 1 TD, 0 INTs, 2 poor throws, 1 drop, 2 throwaways
2011: 12 GP/11 GS (3-8 record), 387 comp., 560 att., 69.1%, 4334 yds, 7.7 YPA, 28 TDs, 14 INTs; -103 rushign yds, 0 TDs
2010: 11/11 (5-6)-286-426-67.1-3191-7.5-20-10; -113-1
2009: 12/10 (6-4)-260-409-63.6-2486-6.1-19-9; -73-3
2008: redshirt; transfer from Michigan State
2007: Michigan State: 1/0-5-8-62.5-57-7.1-0-0; 0-0
Foles is a solid prospect that has some developmental potential at the next level. If he can come initially as a reserve and sit for a year or two, he stands the chance of being a competent starter down the road. He needs stability and needs to hone his craft in a system. But if any team drafts him with the expectation that he'll be a starter in his first or second year, they're probably going to be sorely disappointed. Foles inconsistent accuracy, decision making, and less than stellar pocket mobility will make it a fairly tough transition for him at the next level, at least immediately. As he grows, learns, and develops, he can improve on those areas. But in the end, I don't think he's ever going to be more than Ok in those three areas. Thus if he does become a starter, I think the best you're hoping for is a Kyle Orton-caliber stopgap, but his game will probably be a bit more reminiscent of Derek Anderson with lesser arm strength. In the right system, with good weapons and a strong supporting cast, he could be a competent starter. But I'm hard-pressed to see him be a long-term option for any team. More than likely, I could see Foles having a nice, long career as a No. 2, but I think he'll be limited as a starter at the next level.
Foles is probably not ready to come in right away and compete as the No. 2 guy in Atlanta. But given a year, he could be ready to make that move up. Definitely by his third year. And if he ever was to get an extended opportunity at that point to start in place of an injured Matt Ryan, he might be worthwhile late round trade bait. But more than likely, the Falcons can only look at him as a competent long-term reserve that doesn't offer a ton of upside.
Foles has a chance to be a starter, so I don't think it would be a major reach to take him in the fourth round. But more than likely, he's a career backup that is more in line with fifth round talent. For a team that is willing and comfortable with sitting him for the better part of two or three years, that is where he might merit a fourth round selection. He adds depth for a team looking for a developmental prospect.
1-pathetic, 2-poor, 3-weak, 4-below average, 5-average, 6-above average, 7-good, 8-very good, 9-excellent, 10-elite
Arm Strength: 7.0
Decision Making: 5.5
Pocket Awareness: 4.5
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.