Sunday, April 5, 2009

Player Profile: Josh Freeman QB Kansas St.

Pros: Freeman has the size, athletic ability, and the type of huge arm NFL teams salivate over. At close to 6’6’’ and 250 pounds, he is the biggest quarterback among the top quarterbacks in this class. For being as big as he is, he moves very well when there is space in front of him. He is tough for defenders to bring down and will break arm tackles. Besides his running ability, Freeman is impressive throwing the ball. He has the arm to make all of the NFL throws. He improved a lot between his sophomore year and junior year. Durability was not an issue in college and he has the size of a classic pocket passer.

Cons: Freeman definitely has the physical ability, but what isn’t as obvious as his cannon arm is whether or not he also possesses the intangibles needed to be consistent or great at the NFL level. He make some poor decisions and forced throws as a Wildcat. He also needs to work at his ability to read coverages, his touch and be more consistent with his accuracy. Freeman is very raw and will need coaching up when it comes to his mechanics, at times failing to do simple things like set his feet or square his shoulders when throwing. If these problems aren’t corrected, turnovers will be an issue at the next level.

Scouts take: It’s easy to fall in love with Freeman’s big frame and huge arm—he possesses arguably the most upside of any signal caller in this draft. He is viewed as one of the top three quarterbacks in the class and considering he has yet to hit his full potential as a game manager, he could end up at the head of the class when all things are said and done. But Freeman is nowhere ready to start for an NFL team. If he is thrown out on the field next year he could really struggle and it could hurt his ability for the future. One more year at K-State to work on his mechanics wouldn’t have hurt his future as a pro at all. Freeman is not a “product of the system” he played in, unlike most Big XII teams, the Wildcats didn’t rely on the spread alone and he wasn’t surrounded by the same type of weapons that a Graham Harrell or Sam Bradford were. Freeman lined up under center and in shotgun. Despite only playing three years, he has a lot of experience having played virtually since day one and has showed enough potential to land in the first round. Freeman is far from ready to lead an NFL offense, however no less so than 2007 No. 1 overall pick JaMarcus Russell was when he came into the league following his junior season.

Photo Credit: College Press Box (Kansas St.)