Quarterbacks in the 2017 NFL draft stand to make a lot of money. The last two drafts have both seen quarterbacks selected with the first and second picks. Three of those picks were Day 1 starters for their teams, and their contracts averaged $26 million, all guaranteed money.

With several teams in the market for a quarterback of the future — including the 49ers, the Bears, the Browns, the Jets, the Cardinals and perhaps the Saints and Giants — the demand is there. And after the Rams and Eagles traded huge numbers of picks to get Jared Goff and Carson Wentz at the top of the 2016 draft, which team will get their passer of the future is anyone’s guess.

Here’s a look at the early candidates for first-round consideration.

DeShone Kizer

Look at Notre Dame’s Kizer and you think quarterback. At a solid 6-feet-4, 230, he certainly passes the eyeball test. And, unlike so many young passers, he’s comfortable in the pocket, even against intense rushes. But what’s really outstanding about Kizer is his accuracy and touch. He’s also got a big arm and very good, if not outstanding, field vision. This year’s stats — 116-72-1,096-11-3 passing and 43-186-5 rushing — paint an accurate picture of his NFL potential. His best NFL comparison would probably be Ben Roethlisberger.

Deshaun Watson

The Clemson Tiger’s stats have not been spectacular so far — 150-90-996-9-4 passing and 35-120-0 rushing — but that doesn’t worry scouts.

While he has a just strong enough arm, what makes Watson special and a top prospect is his uncanny accuracy, superb athleticism and veteran-like field vision. He faces many of the same challenges college passers do when entering the NFL, like getting used to playing under center and not tucking the ball and running too often, but his top tier intellect should help him succeed.

There are questions about his size, but plenty of 6-feet-2, 205-pound QBs have succeeded in the NFL. He reminds me a bit of a young Tony Romo, but with much better legs.

Brad Kaaya

Like Kizer, Kaaya is a rarity in college football these days — a true pocket passer. Not huge — 6-feet-3 and maybe 210 pounds — Kaaya does not possess the strongest arm of the top prospects, but he can make most of the throws with zip.

He does, however, pack first-rate touch, field vision and an ability to avoid the rush. He’s not really a threat with his legs, though. Playing behind a talent-poor offensive line has forced to Kaaya to run for his life all season, but his stats — 76-50-694-7-3 passing and 4-(-13)-0 rushing — are still pretty satisfying. He’s got a bit of Teddy Bridgewater to him.

Chad Kelly

The nephew of NFL great Jim Kelly, the Ole Miss passer has his uncle’s fearless and exciting gunslinger style. But right now, he’s all about that big arm. His field vision, accuracy and ability to sense and avoid the rush could all stand to improve if he wants to be considered an NFL franchise quarterback. Still, he’s very exciting to watch, and has the stats this year — 130-85-1,235-12-3 passing and 35-62-1 rushing — to catch scouts’ eye.

He’ll need a strong coaching system and maybe some time to develop. His upside is similar toMatthew Stafford, but there’s a little Ryan Mallettin his game as well.

Follow the page NFL
Don't miss our page on Facebook!