Cleveland Browns: Week 8 college QB tracker

Oct 15, 2016; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Mitch Trubisky (10) attempts a pass against the Miami Hurricanes during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 15, 2016; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Mitch Trubisky (10) attempts a pass against the Miami Hurricanes during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /
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Height: 6-foot-3; Weight: 220 pounds; Age 22; Class: Redshirt Junior

Mitch Trubisky is in his first season as the starting quarterback for the Tarheels, after redshirting his first year and backing up Marquis Williams the past two seasons. Trubisky has taken the college football stage by storm by throwing 15 touchdowns to just 2 interceptions in his first seven starts of his career.

Trubisky is a native of Northeast Ohio where he attended Mentor High School. At Mentor, during his senior season in 2013, Trubiksy won the Mr. Football award, given to the top player in the State of Ohio each year. Trubisky received scholarship offers from Ohio State, Michigan State and Alabama but choose to attend North Carolina over these bigger programs. Though it is his first season starting, Trubisky has grabbed the attention of NFL scouts around the league with his efficiency and mistake-free play.

Strengths: What stands out about Trubisky is his immense confidence level and his ability to stay cool under pressure. For having only a handful games under his belt as a starter, Trubisky has shown leadership qualities to make one think he has been starting for multiple seasons. In a small sample size, Trubisky has shown to be extremely accurate completing 70.5 percent of passes, which is sevnth in the country. Through the games I have studied, he has shown good ball placement on short and intermediate routes. Along with his accuracy and high completion percentage, the Ohio native has showcased a gunslinger ability to trust in his arm and deliver into small windows.

Trubisky has a good feel in the pocket and makes smart decisions throwing from inside the pocket. His two interceptions came against Virginia Tech two weeks ago, playing in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. He has above-average size and build for an NFL quarterback and has speed to be a dual-threat player. Trubisky does a majority of his work from the pocket, but according to Matt Miller of Bleacher Report, he has a 4.6 40-yard dash time, exceptional for a quarterback.

Needs to Improve: The biggest knack on Trubiksy is something out of his control, his experience. Trubisky is in his first season starting and hasn’t generated enough game tape to get an accurate evaluation on his draft status. With only seven starts, he is very raw and needs to continue to show improvement each week as he is still learning and adapting his own play style.

Additionally, Trubisky has shown inconsistencies in his mechanics and footwork. He sometimes often falls off his throws, not following through causing some passes to be erratic. Also, his throwing motion sometimes gets elongated when he has time in the pocket, as it appears he “winds up” so to speak when throwing. Mechanics and footwork are both aspects of his game which can easily improve with repetition, practice and live game action.

Early NFL Comparison: Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons 

Like Matt Ryan, Trubisky has a solid build for the quarterback position. Like Ryan, he shows great accuracy on short and intermediate routes. Both have good arm strength and show the capability to make every throw necessary for an NFL quarterback. He compares similar to Ryan due to his natural poise and pocket presence and natural arm talent.

Both do a majority of their work from the pocket, but have the ability to extend plays with their legs. Thus far in his early career, Trubiksy has shown to be very efficient completing over 70 percent of his passes and only throwing two picks. This is similar to the style of play in “Matty Ice,” who led the league in completion percentage in 2012 and does a good job of protecting the football.

Verdict: Trubisky has been impressive thus far in 2016 and has jumped onto the radar of scouts and coaches around the league. However, with very little starting experience, Trubisky will benefit from returning to school for his fifth-year senior season and gaining more collegiate experience where he can define his mechanics and footwork. If he leaves school early after this year, he will definitely gain interest from NFL teams but won’t have enough film and experience to be a first-round selection. He will be projected in rounds 2-3 compared to being one of the top or the top quarterback prospect in the 2018 class if he chooses to return to school. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report agrees that he will benefit from another season with the Tarheels.

Highlights of Trubisky and North Carolina in their win last week against Miami