2018 Raiders Draft Prospect
Name: Riley Ferguson
Ht: 6’ 4”
Wt: 210 lbs.
The Raiders showed what could happen when their starting quarterback gets hurt, and the last couple of years have not been kind to starter Derek Carr. When Carr goes down, the entire team takes a step back and the backup quarterbacks have been anything but reliable when called upon. It would be fitting to bring in a rookie quarterback that could eventually step in for Carr in case anything happens again and can win games when called upon, which Ferguson can do for the Raiders.
Ferguson shows good pocket presence when given a clean pocket and time to let routes develop. When pressured his mechanics break down and questionable decision-making seems to happen more frequently than desired. He has good instincts to move around the pocket and out of danger when blocking breaks down and can scramble when called upon.
Very good at times at reading defenses, and seemingly the exact opposite at others. Flashes very good ability to make the right pass at the right time, but occasionally makes the bonehead play. Very frustrating at times, as his ability to drive the ball into tight windows makes him look incredible, but when pressured his thinking process breaks down and makes the wrong decision more often than not.
Release is very good. Not much wasted motion and has a high release point, making it very hard for knockdowns and tipped passes at the line of scrimmage. His ability to throw a tight spiral in traffic and under pressure is astounding. His release reminds me of Philip Rivers with more power.
Ferguson has excellent arm strength. His ability to make long passes seem effortless is the best. His yards per attempt went up from last year and he had a long of 89-yards. He can drive the ball and makes highlight reel throws downfield routinely. Arm strength will be a selling point to teams in the draft looking for a playmaker to develop behind their current starter.
Not a traditionally mobile quarterback but when under duress moves around the pocket long enough to make the play or get rid of the ball. Has good instincts and pocket presence and can feel when pressure is getting to him. He is more athletic than given credit for and can make plays with his legs if needed. He will need to put on some muscle at the next level though as he his slim for the position.
When given time to go through progressions he will make the right read going through to his third or fourth read. Unlike other quarterbacks in this draft, Ferguson will stay in the pocket and wait for the play to develop. Does not get happy feet and will plant and drive the ball in the pocket when given time.
Ferguson has great accuracy when kept clean and not pressured. Rarely throws a duck and usually places the ball right where it needs to be in tight windows when given time to plant his feet. When moving right when flushed out of the pocket his mechanics do not break down much but when driven left out of the pocket his accuracy becomes a lot more questionable. Occasionally, his ball placement is all over the place and his decision-making skills are too.