Cleveland Browns: 3 reasons to stay far away from Cardale Jones
By Thomas Moore
Cardale Jones certainly looks the part of an NFL quarterback, but as many other players before have shown, there is more to being an NFL quarterback than simply looking the part. (Just ask fellow Buckeye Terrell Pryor.)
Those fans advocating for Jones to the Browns point to his three-game stretch at the end of the 2014 season, when he helped lead the Buckeyes to the national title. But as the memories of those games fades into the distance, they look more and more like an aberration rather than a validation of Jones’ untapped talent.
As his draft profile at NFL.com points out, Jones was:
"Handed starting job and never owned it. Disappointing accuracy issues with difficulty hitting simple slants. Uncorked interceptions where unrushed pocket throws sailed way over the top of targets. Eyeballs receivers and brings heat from instinctive linebackers and defensive backs. Had issues reading and reacting to zone coverage underneath. Doesn’t hold safeties with his eyes. Failed to execute timing throws out in rhythm. Will pump and reset too often forcing out routes against the sideline. Tends to overthrow near goal line and leave touchdown passes on the field. Saw completion numbers drop almost 30 percent when forced to throw on the move. Below average pocket feel and blitz awareness. Was unable to move from checkers to chess against defensive coordinators."
If Jones had trouble dealing with the defenses thrown at him by the likes of Western Michigan, Northern Illinois and Minnesota, what do you think teams like the Steelers and Baltimore Ravens will do to him?
CBS Sports also points out that Jones “needs refinement with his footwork, internal clock and overall accuracy to all levels of the field. Maturity has been another trouble issue with Jones and his class clown routine won’t be tolerated by many NFL head coaches.”
Most damning of all, perhaps, is that Jones has been compared to former Oakland Raider quarterback JaMarcus Russell. Much like how small quarterbacks will never want to be compared to Johnny Manziel, if you are a big quarterback with a big arm, you don’t want to be anywhere near Russell.
Next: Jones will need years to develop