C.J. Beathard isn’t at the top of any 2017 NFL Draft projections, but NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport is optimistic about the former Iowa quarterback’s prospects.
Rapoport has Beathard on a list of five players who “should go much higher than expected” in next weekend’s draft.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 18, 2017
CBS Sports has Beathard as the No. 10 quarterback in this draft, which gets underway on Thursday, April 27, and ends on Saturday, April 29. That projection has Beathard going in the seventh round. Pro Football Focus and ESPN’s Todd McShay left him out of their 3-round mock drafts.
Beathard took over Iowa’s starting quarterback job in 2016 after Jake Rudock transferred to Michigan. Beathard led Iowa to a 12-2 record and an appearance in the Rose Bowl, and averaged 7.8 yards per attempt on a 139.5 QB rating as a junior.
His yards-per-attempt dipped to 6.4 during his senior season, and his interceptions doubled from 5 to 10. The Hawkeyes finished 8-5 last season.
Dan Shonka of Ourlads Scouting Services has an evaluation of Iowa’s quarterback:
“A student of the game who plays well in play action. Handles the ball well on fakes and bootlegs. Patient and poised in the pocket. Quick release on a half roll and waggle passes. Can elude pocket pressure and run for positive yards. … At the Senior Bowl he was mechanically sound but inconsistent in his play. At times he showed good arm strength and at other times he floated the ball on vertical routes. Accuracy was off and was late with delivery at times.”
Here’s a look at how Beathard, CB Desmond King, DT, Jaleel Johnson, TE George Kittle and OL Cole Croston look before the draft, and where these former Hawkeyes could end up playing in the NFL.