Falcons: Mel Kiper believes J.J. McCarthy could go before Drake Maye

NFL: MAR 01 Scouting Combine

The NFL world is smack dab in the middle of smokescreen season as free agency begins next week and the draft is less than two months away. As far as the latter is concerned, the most divisive prospect coming out of the NFL Combine is J.J. McCarthy.

Most of the public doesn’t seem to be impressed with the national champion quarterback out of Michigan. There wasn’t a lot of flash in his game at the collegiate level, but numbers don’t always tell the full story, and teams seem to be impressed with the way McCarthy carried himself in Indianapolis.

There has been no shortage of rumblings from NFL insiders that J.J. McCarthy could go inside the top six picks in the draft. Most recently, longtime draft analyst for ESPN Mel Kiper chimed in, going as far as to say that McCarthy could be QB3 off the board ahead of North Carolina’s Drake Maye.

I am a J.J. McCarthy stan, and if you follow me on social media, I have not been shy about it. What he did at Michigan — in an offense that didn’t want to pass the ball a ton, without elite pass-catchers, and at just 20 years old — is more impressive to me than what Bo Nix and Michael Penix Jr. accomplished at 23 years old this past season, and it’s not particularly close.

McCarthy is athletic, has a strong enough arm, a high football IQ, and proved to be a gamer throughout his time at Michigan. He’s my clear-cut QB4 in this draft, and I wouldn’t argue with anyone who had him higher. With that being said, Drake Maye is a stud with massive upside as well. If he somehow slips out of the top three picks, that will open the door for the Falcons.

Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire

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