Best Scheme Fit: True spread
offense - not unlike the ones new Dolphins OC Chan Gailey has
overseen in his previous stops - with some RPO (run-pass option)
elements and scripted deep throws sprinkled in.
Guilty of floating passes that become easy interceptions;
has to be more selective when he puts air under shorter passes.
Despite solid timed speed, he doesn't boast a ton of explosiveness
as a runner or scrambler.
Showed some growth over his final two college outings but
had more interceptions (15) than touchdowns (14) through the
first 11 games of the season.
The draft community has seemingly decided Love's 2019 somewhat
disappointing season (3,402 passing yards, 20 touchdowns, FBS-high
17 interceptions) was the product of losing the bulk of his supporting
cast and a coaching change after his breakout 2018 campaign (3,567-32-6).
There's no question those changes affected his bottom line, but
even the staunchest of his supporters would have trouble defending
some of the throws he made in his final year of college. In five
games against major-conference programs or conference rivals who
consistently play at that level (Wake Forest, San Diego State,
LSU, BYU and Boise State), Love threw for five touchdowns versus
10 interceptions. In four of those games, he passed for one score
or less. There were also three times in 2019 he threw for three
interceptions in a game - all of which came against the aforementioned
schools - and two more times he was picked off twice. His supporters
will likely suggest this proves the initial point that Love was
trying to do too much in games where the Aggies were overmatched
and overcompensating as a result.
The problem with this stance is that the film doesn't support
it. I do not recall ever watching a quarterback prospect get picked
off so often by the underneath defender (usually was a linebacker
this past year) in zone coverage. There are plenty of areas NFL
coaching can help a young quarterback improve, but the inability
to account for the one player that is typically in the quarterback's
line of sight is not one of them. With that said, he made at least
as many good tight-window throws against zone coverage - albeit
most of them came around the numbers or downfield where linebackers
are obviously less of a factor - so it's not as if zone defense
is his kryptonite. Unfortunately, Love doesn't do enough as a
runner to make it easier for his next team to start him early
and live with could be severe growing pains as a passer.
On the plus side, Love is a gifted deep thrower and seems to
have a solid understanding of when he can go back-shoulder on
a defender. His supporters can also easily point to a large number
of tight-window and/or "bucket throws" he made in 2019
and make a strong case for him enjoying success at the NFL level
because he has the necessary tools. It's not as if he doesn't
have considerable upside, but let's be real about his production
to this point: he struggled to post a 2:1 TD-to-INT ratio during
his college career at a non-power conference school and didn't
fare particularly well when he got a chance to play the big boys.
His skill set may scream first-round pick and rookie starter,
but his 2019 tape suggests he needs a redshirt season. In short,
I don’t like his chances of making much of an impact unless
he is teamed up with a "quarterback whisperer."
Doug Orth has written for FF
Today since 2006 and been featured in USA Today’s Fantasy
Football Preview magazine since 2010. He hosted USA Today’s
hour-long, pre-kickoff fantasy football internet chat every Sunday
in 2012-13 and appears as a guest analyst on a number of national
sports radio shows, including Sirius XM’s “Fantasy Drive”.
Doug is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.