Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Who is Josh Allen? It was a question I found myself asking quite frequently as we approached the draft this year. Evaluators are all split on Allen, either you think he is a genuine NFL talent or you think he will turn out to be little or nothing. No one is just right in the middle on Allen, it’s love or hate.

I tried to keep an open mind heading into the combine because I wanted to see Allen first-hand. As I sat back and watched his performance in front of me, I quickly realized I knew which side I had fallen into.

It’s time to give you my comparison for Allen. The Buffalo Bills decided to use the seventh overall pick on Allen and only time will tell if it turns out to be a mistake. For the purposes of this comparison though, I won’t give you the name until the end. Not all points will line up exactly, but there will be several that really show why I came to this comparison. I suggest you read through all the points first before seeing who Allen is most likely to end up as in the NFL. Time will tell whether it comes to fruition, but keep an open mind for now, even if you’re a Bills fan.

Editor's Note: Get our full-season NFL and DFS Premium Pass for 50% OFF, including the playoffs. Plus, you also get our full-season NBA Premium and DFS Pass for free! Take advantage of our lowest pricing all year, and get an edge on your competition. Sign Up Now!

 

Recruiting

When evaluating prospects, I like to start all the way back at the recruiting stage to give you a good sense of who these players were back at the very beginning. This is about painting an entire picture and not just giving you limited information. We have all heard Allen’s story before. He went to a junior college first before signing with the Wyoming Cowboys. In the 2015 class, Allen was the 199th overall recruit including fifth at his position and 56th in the state of California. The recruiting period wasn’t kind to Allen, but he worked hard and got someone to buy into him.

Our QB comparison was the exact opposite. In his recruiting class, he ranked fifth nationally, second at his position and first in the state out of high school. He had plenty of suitors, although he did eventually transfer to a different school due to a coaching change. This QB ended up playing better competition than Allen through his college career and posted better numbers.

 

The Stats

Since Allen did not play as a freshman and only a small portion of his sophomore year before redshirting, I am only using stats from Allen and Player B during their final two seasons in college. The difference between the two stats wise is pretty glaring.

So even though Player B only played in one more game than Allen over the final two seasons of their college careers, the numbers are substantially better. Now, I am doing a comparison article and these numbers don’t really come close, but the truth is, we really need to understand just how poorly Allen played during his final two years. This will help later when we get into the breakdown over metrics and the scouting report, which is where this comparison really takes off. Overall, Allen is being drafted based on potential, not numbers. The similarities between the two later will help raise the question of whether Allen really has that much potential.

Back to the numbers though. It is important to note that while Allen was putting together unimpressive numbers in the Mountain West, Player B was putting together much better numbers in the SEC without nearly the hype that Allen had. We also hear a lot about the lack of talent around Allen in his final year with the Cowboys. Player B faced similar issues. Over the course of Player B’s final two years and the two years after, only one tight end, four wide receivers and one running back were selected in the NFL draft from his college. Out of those players, none of them went on to be difference makers in the NFL. No names at this point though, so we will come back to that later.

To add to the stats, the best QBR that Allen logged while in college was a 63.2, which put him in the 23rd percentile. Player B managed to log a 75.4 rating in his final season, which was in the 57th percentile. Even though Allen was greatly outperformed by other quarterbacks in the country, he managed to be drafted by the Bills at seventh overall in what was considered to be a pretty deep draft for quarterbacks. Player B though? He was taken in the third round by the New England Patriots. Have you guessed yet?

 

Metrics

Now let’s get to the bread and butter of this comparison. All the information above was used to set up this point, but this is where our players really start coming together. Both of these players are built the same. Allen comes in at six feet five inches and 237 pounds while Player B comes in at six feet seven inches and 253 pounds. Their hand size is extremely close as well with Allen measuring 10 1/8 inches while Player B measured 10 ¾ inches. All of these measurements give us a realistic view that both players were built from a similar mold.

Allen’s greatest strength, and the main reason he was drafted as high as he was, was his arm strength. It was hard not to be a little impressed that he threw the ball over 70 yards at the combine. When he was clocked, Allen threw the ball 62 MPH, which ranked in the top 100%. Player B was not too far behind though, as he was able to throw the ball 58 MPH and landed in the 85th percentile. This was the initial attribute that started my research into this comparison and the reason it grew into more than just a hunch. Let’s take a look at the scouting report.

 

Scouting Report

All of this information was obtained directly off NFL.com and their player report that was detailed during the draft. There were two major weaknesses that link these players together. The first is their footwork. Both players have concerns over accuracy issues due to their poor footwork. Accuracy in the short game could also be an issue since both players like to zip the ball in there. Sometimes a little more touch is needed. For Allen, this is something that can be worked on over time, but not if the Bills decide to throw him into the fire this season. Allen’s chances of succeeding would have gone up greatly if he went to a team that could sit him for at least a couple years to learn and progress.

The second weakness I found comparable was that they were both prone to making mistakes that were due to a lapse in judgment or trying to do too much with the football. Both have big arms and feel they can fit the ball wherever they need in order to make a play. You can’t do that when you transition to the NFL though. Allen will need to learn very quickly that he can’t throw himself out of any situation.

 

The Comparison

I’ve probably kept you in suspense long enough, but it’s time to give up the goods. This was an easy comparison for me to make and if you don’t watch a lot of college football, you may not have seen Ryan Mallett play for the Arkansas Razorbacks. He was always a quarterback with a huge arm but issues with accuracy and a need to just slow the game down at times.

It was important for you to see the numbers first hand however because you need to understand that Allen was drafted solely on his metrics, some of the same metrics Mallet was drafted on, but Mallett also had better numbers to back those up. Mallett is currently a free agent who never turned out to be a reliable NFL quarterback. He outperformed Allen in every sense from high school thought college, but Allen was the one taken in the first round and has been lauded as one of the next great quarterbacks.

How you played in college doesn’t always matter when you go to the NFL, but it’s hard to not be worried about Allen’s lack of college success. I brought up the point earlier about Allen being given a “pass” for last season due to little talent on the roster with him. You want to know who Mallett played with in his final seasons with the Razorbacks? Future NFL picks he played with include D.J. Williams, Greg Childs, Jarius Wright, Joe Adams, Cobi Hamilton and Knile Davis. He greatly outperformed Allen while playing in a tougher conference and with just as little help from the talent around him. I think it’s time that we realize Allen is more like Mallett than Brett Favre, but most importantly I hope dynasty owners realize that before their upcoming rookie drafts.

 

More 2018 NFL Busts & Overvalued Draft Picks