Of all the top quarterbacks in this upcoming 2021 NFL draft, one name that isn’t getting mentioned a lot is Kyle Trask. This is somewhat unusual. He plays at a top program in Florida. He has NFL size at 6’5. Most of all, he’s coming off an outstanding season for the Gators. A season that saw him set the program record for passing yards (4,283) and touchdowns (43). This after having a pretty good year in 2019 as well.
So why isn’t he getting more love from draft experts? The established explanation is he seems too much like a system quarterback. That is to say, he doesn’t have the mobility or the arm strength to make plays outside the structure of an offense. In this era of the NFL with guys like Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes, and Lamar Jackson? That is a problem for evaluators.
Still, one person thinks Trask will go higher than others expect.
During a segment on NFL Get Up for ESPN, former Jets and Dolphins GM Mike Tannenbaum made a prediction. He believes somebody is going to move up from the 2nd round into the bottom of the 1st for Trask. The idea is to get the quarterback they want on a contract with a 5th-year option included. Who does he envision doing this? The Chicago Bears.
The idea itself makes sense. Getting a QB on that 5th-year option is vital, allowing teams to control a young quarterback at an affordable price for five years instead of four presuming they pan out. Would Trask be the Bears’ target in such a situation though? One persistent criticism about him that sticks out more than the others is his field vision. Defenses could often confuse him with disguised coverages and he constantly wasn’t able to respond. Games like LSU and Oklahoma towards the end of the season proved it.
Bears may do what Tannenbaum says but not for Kyle Trask
Matt Nagy is a head coach who places a big emphasis on leadership and decision-making. While the Florida QB had some of the former, he seemed to be lacking the latter at times. Especially as defenses began to adjust to him late in the year. Then again none of the second-tier guys seem to have that issue figured out. So it comes down to whether the Bears would be comfortable gambling on him.
Given his limited ceiling, that seems unlikely. Remember GM Ryan Pace has a track record of preferring 1st round picks who exhibit physical upside. Kevin White, Leonard Floyd, Mitch Trubisky, and Roquan Smith all had high athletic ceilings. Even with Nagy’s input, it is unlikely he will compromise that part of his evaluations. So if Kyle Trask isn’t the target, who would it be.
The two names left are Kellen Mond of Texas A&M and Davis Mills of Stanford.
Both have that physical upside. Mond is the better runner while Mills has a bigger body and stronger arm. Mond is more experienced by a considerable margin. Mills though seems like the more natural passer. The red flags? Mond has no viable deep ball to speak of and can suffer from indecisiveness. Mills only started 11 games in college and didn’t throw a lot of touchdowns. So either way, the Bears would be taking a risk.
This could be why Trask seems like the most palatable. Despite his shortcomings, his production speaks for itself. That can translate to the NFL if a team understands what he does best.