MOBILE, Ala. — The Pittsburgh Steelers could be quarterback shopping for a mid-round pick, or even someone higher. And so, heading into the Senior Bowl, guys like Michael Penix and Bo Nix jumped off the page as potential targets for Pittsburgh in the NFL Draft.
Earlier on Thursday, Alan Saunders wrote that he thought most of quarterbacks at the Senior Bowl disappointed and would not be great targets given their three days here at this event. He was not wrong; this was not a particularly great week for anyone, and that thought was common among everyone you talked to, especially Bo Nix and Michael Penix.
Now, Nix and Penix had their moments. And the tape certainly can not be discounted just because of three days here. But what I did see were guys who just seemed off for most of the week with too little flash write anything home about. Finally, late in Thursday’s practice, Penix started to get rolling when he hit receivers for three touchdowns in the red zone team period. He started flashing that anticipation and even made some tight-window throws. Then, the more Nix got going, the more comfortable he seemed at making those pre-snap adjustments. But the inaccuracy all week against little pressure was concerning.
As for the rest of the group, Michael Pratt and Spencer Rattler might be the big winners. Rattler, in particular, had some good moments. He started off the first day of practice ready to go, but ended that one with an interception and some wildly erratic throws. But throughout the rest of the week, Rattler flashed his arm talent outside the numbers, hitting guys into tight windows and on back-shoulder fades. His poise was impressive. As for Pratt, his week matched the Tulane tape. There were some inaccuracy problems due to his mechanics, but his anticipation and deep ball stood out.
Sam Hartman showcased some of that heart that made him some desirable out of Notre Dame. I came out of it thinking he could be a backup, but I was not that impressed. Joe Milton and Carter Bradley are complete projects but have intriguing tools that have to be molded. They were all over the place.
So, in other words, the performances of these quarterbacks were not up to the standard, especially for Penix and Nix. But we’ll see what they can do in the game and where they go.