East-west Shrine Game: Scouting Jeff Matthews

Patrick Shanahan/Cornell University

The hot button topic on MCM has been quarterback the last few days. Let's keep the trend going with Jeff Matthews.

When you think about Cornell University you think about future lawyers, politicians, and maybe even presidents. This year one of the next big graduates out of Cornell is Jeff Matthews. The big quarterback who tried his best to deliver a great season to the lowly Big Red.

Matthews is currently projected as a 7th round pick or possible UDFA. Let's see how much we can expect from him in the NFL. First thing that stands out about Jeff Matthews is his amazing arm. He posses one of the best weapons in this draft, his mix of arm strength and accuracy is tremendous. I watch tape on his junior year to senior year and he has developed his ball placement well That leads me to believe that some of his other problems are possibly going to be easier to fix with NFL quality coaching.

Coming from Cornell he is, of course, smart. A friend of mine who specializes in Ivy league talent (assistant at Yale) told me Matthews is a kid who is the first one in the building and the last one to leave because he is studying tape.

The problems he has are his inconsistent mechanics and that does not step into his throws. He relies on his natural arm talent too much and it could be costly in the NFL.

The surprising thing about Matthews is I was expecting his pocket awareness and quick read to be better due to his intelligence, but it is surprisingly average. It will definitely need to improve once making such a big jump from Ivy to NFL. His record as a starter was 12-25. That is a red flag for me considering the talent he was going up against and the level of quarterback he is expected to be.

Granted, watching tape on him I noticed he had a terrible team around him- almost every other pass was dropped by his receivers. He is a smart kid who will be able to fix his mechanical issues, and hopefully if he ever does get the chance to start, having a actual team around him will fix his problem with winning games.

One main reason I am pointing out Jeff Matthews is because I believe the chances of the Titans drafting him in the later rounds are high. Jeff Matthews fits the prototypical Ken Whisenhunt quarterback- a smart pocket passer, see Kurt Warner and John Skelton. I think Matthews compares well to his other Ivy league quarterbacks like Fitzpatrick and Skelton, but I believe he has more talent than both. Matthews has potential and could become an NFL quality starter, maybe not a franchise guy but at the very least a game manager type. More than likely though he will become a very smart backup quarterback you can rely on if your starter goes down.

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