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- Position: Quarterback (QB)
- Class: Senior (redshirt)
- College: Oregon State
- Ht/Wt: 6'6", 229 pounds
I don't know what all the fuss is about regarding Sean Mannion. Sure, he's a tall, pocket-passing quarterback who played in some pro concepts in his offense. That's about where the appeal ends for me. Athletically, Mannion is nothing to write home about, with bottom-tier speed and explosion measures. His hands measure in at a concerning nine inches even; nine inches is considered the bare minimum for generating proper spin on the ball with throws. Mannion can make all the throws in the route tree, although his velocity isn't as good as it could be. He's always throwing without his weight shifted forward, which saps him of some power and makes a few throws float.
Mannion makes good use of play fakes in his game. He is willing to stand in, take a hit, and throw a pass in the process. The accuracy is good when his mechanics are good. When Mannion feels pressure, his mechanics break down, he doesn't set his feet, and suddenly the ball starts sailing.
My biggest concern with Mannion is what he does when the play breaks down. Mannion does a good job when operating within the context of a play design. It's why he succeeded so well when Brandin Cooks was his top target in 2013; he always knew his primary read. When his first reads aren't open, there's a blitz, or he finds more guys in coverage than he expected, Mannion really struggles to process plays quickly and improvise a solution. He usually rushes the process and makes a bad decision, which is why I was continually reminded of J.P. Losman while watching his game. In short, I don't believe Mannion will be successful in the NFL because of his lack of processing speed.
This is a pretty straightforward grade for me. Mannion has some tools to work with, but he needs a lot of seasoning on the bench, and I don't know if he'll ever succeed. I think he's more likely to trend towards Losman or Blaine Gabbert than toward a strong career. He may look good in his football gear on the practice field, but when the blows start flying, the passes will start missing. I don't like him as much as Blake Sims or Shane Carden, both of whom I consider to have strong abilities to deal with broken down plays. I have Mannion graded as a seventh-round pick, and I hope that Bills GM Doug Whaley was kidding when he mentioned Mannion in the same group as Bryce Petty and Garrett Grayson.