Zach Mettenberger QB LSU #8
Size/Athleticism: Prototypical NFL size. He has the height to stand in the pocket and see the whole field and the size to take some hits. Strictly a pocket passer, very limited mobility outside the pocket. However, he does move very well within the pocket. He’s a decent athlete, so can avoid the pass-rusher, he just isn’t blessed with the speed to be a serious threat on the run.
Arm strength/Accuracy: Above-average arm strength, bordering on elite. He has the ability to make every throw on the field and can get the ball downfield with some nice zip. But he isn’t just a cannon arm. He shows excellent touch and knows when to take something off his fastball. Stands tall in the pocket and will deliver crisp, accurate throws even in the face of pressure.
Footwork/Release: Solid fundamentals. Remains calm under pressure and moves within the pocket while maintaining his fundamentals. Technique begins to break down when he’s forced out of the pocket. He struggles to set his feet and sometimes drops his arm when throwing on the move. Footwork in the pocket is extremely polished for a college quarterback. He consistently sees the pressure from all sides and steps up in the pocket to buy time while keeping his eyes downfield.
Decision making: Still developing in this area but made significant strides from junior to senior year. Most of his mistakes come from issues reading the defense, rather than blind trust in his arm which is the most common, and more concerning, issue for young quarterbacks. With more experience and quality coaching, he can continue to develop in this area. Playing in an NFL-style system under Cam Cameron did wonders for his development in this area. Will occasionally lock on to a receiver
Intangibles: Spent one year at Georgia, transferred to JUCO, then to LSU in 2011. Two-year starter in the SEC with plenty of experience and success against elite competition. Not a noticeably vocal leader on the field. Arrested and plead guilty to sexual battery charges in 2010 for inappropriately touching a woman at a bar.
Durability: Coming off a season-ending torn ACL.
Comments: Mettenberger has the talent to be an elite pocket passer. But his stock will be determine by how much NFL personnel trust him to continue to develop. It’s a fair question to wonder how much impact Cam Cameron had on Mettenberger and how much of it is sustainable. Did Cameron already squeeze everything he could out of him, or is there more under the surface? How he interviews and how much more development, in terms of the mental side of the game, is possible will determine where he lands in the draft.