Zach Mettenberger has risen his NFL draft stock perhaps more so than any other quarterback in college football this season with a spectacular senior season for the No. 18 LSU Tigers and his production and maturation is drawing comparisons to an NFL quarterback with multiple Pro Bowl appearances.
Bleacher Report’s NFL Draft lead writer, Matt Miller looked at the top quarterbacks and their best fits in the NFL and the player they compare to at the next level and the comparison for the 6-5, 242-pound Mettenberger is San Diego Chargers quarterback and four-time Pro Bowl selection, Philip Rivers.
Like Rivers, Mettenberger is an extremely tall, strong, big-armed quarterback with “wide throwing mechanics” who is capable of making all the requisite throws in the NFL. Neither is going to beat you with their feet, but as Miller points out his upside could make his a very high pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.
“His upside is perhaps the biggest advantage to his game. Mettenberger is still quite raw as a quarterback, and if his improvement in Cameron’s system is any indication, he’s poised to improve by leaps and bounds in the NFL.”
Veteran NFL Draft analyst, Mel Kiper was on a teleconference with national media today and spoke about Mettenberger who he has ranked as No. 50 on his board, but thinks he can sneak into the late first round. Depending on the decisions of some underclassmen who may elect to return to school (Marcus Mariota, Brett Hundley) then that scenario looks even more likely.
As Miller writes, the biggest question about Mettenberger in the pre-draft process is if Mettenberger is the product of Cam Cameron’s system or did the proverbial light go on for him in his final season.
Mettenberger has a big showdown with another top-ranked quarterback in Johnny Manziel when his Texas A&M team comes to Tiger Stadium Nov. 23. With plenty of NFL scouts watching that game, Mettenberger will have an opportunity to upstage one of the best college quarterbacks we have ever seen and raise his stock even more.
If he turns out like Rivers who has led the NFL in passing touchdowns and passing yards in his 10-year career on top of a career passer rating 95.5, his NFL team will be awfully happy they drafted him out of LSU.