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2024 NFL Draft

Ex-Steelers RB Blasts Top QB Prospect Drake Maye: ‘Will Get You Fired’

Former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Merril Hoge blasts Drake Maye and believes he is the type of player to get a GM fired.



Pittsburgh Steelers Drake Maye

Former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Merril Hoge is known to be outspoken in his takes, including about top NFL Draft prospects. That has not changed this year, as Hoge made waves on Monday with his critique of top North Carolina quarterback prospect Drake Maye.

Hoge believes that Maye is the type of player who could get a general manager fired and ripped into Maye’s game, particularly about weaknesses he believes will plague him in the league.

“Drake Maye is the kind of player that will get you fired,” Hoge said to WCCO radio. “Especially if you draft him in the top five or top three, he’s going to get you fired. (Malik) Willis might be the only guy that I can think of that is as erratic as Maye. I studied him for two years. I watched every one of his games last year. His last game against (NC State) was probably the most embarrassing display I’ve seen from a guy who is supposed to be an elite franchise quarterback. He’s erratic. He’s everywhere.”

Last month, former Steelers quarterback Terry Hanratty talked about Maye on his podcast, Hanratty’s Huddle, and heard the comparisons of Maye to Ben Roethlisberger.

“Am GM told me that everyone talks about [Caleb Williams] from Southern Cal. And all of a sudden, a guy tells me, ‘Don’t be surprised if you don’t see Maye go before him,’” Hanratty said. “He’s like a Roethlisberger with better movement. Big and strong, and he’s got a big arm, and he’s a tough guy.”

ESPN analyst and former NFL quarterback Dan Orlovksy does not want people to forget about Maye, either, and he came up with the very same comparison last month.

Speaking on the Pat McAfee Show, Orlovsky broke down Maye’s game. He sees a lot of Roethlisberger in the game of Maye, specifically regarding his arm talent and ability to create off-script. Of course, that was a specialty of Roethlisberger throughout his career, and the fact that he could avoid prominent sacks made him much more challenging for teams to defend against him.

I called a lot of Drake’s games in college, and he’s Big Ben to me. He is,” Orlovsky said. “The kid is 6-foot-5,, 230 now and could put on 20 pounds easily. He’s one of those athletes that when you watch him move, you’re just like, he’s a little bit not refined, he’s sloppy mechanically at times, but he is a freak. You can’t teach the stuff that Big Ben had, can’t teach the stuff Josh (Allen) has.”

As for the Steelers, there’s virtually little to no way Maye will be coming to the Steelers. However, if the Ben Roethlisberger comparisons are something you buy into, Maye could be a threat in the AFC or NFC, wherever he lands. But the take by Hoge is another that is scorching, too.