In the 2022 NFL Draft, the race for QB1 is as befuddling as ever. Nevada QB Carson Strong has declared for the 2022 NFL Draft and accepted an invitation to the Senior Bowl, but that has still left some to wonder. After winning the Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year honors in both 2020 and 2021, what does Strong offer an NFL team? In this 2022 NFL Draft scouting report, we’ll breakdown what Carson Strong does so well, as well as why he’s considered by some to be one of the top quarterbacks in this class.
Carson Strong 40 Time
Strong is a prototypical pocket passer with marginal athleticism. He is not a threat with his legs and often looks uncomfortable when running with the ball in the open field. Given the ‘pocket passer’ label that he’s been attributed with, and it’s understandable why we predict his 40 time will be between a 4.9 and 5.0. Simply put, he’s unlikely to be a threat to extend plays outside of the pocket in the NFL.
Carson Strong Injury History
This is where Strong’s evaluation gets interesting. Having suffered a significant knee injury in high school, Strong is still dealing with it. Although he has not missed any time, he had arthroscopic knee surgery in the fall of 2021. As we have seen many times in the past, these injuries can cause a steep drop in draft stock. NFL teams will have to be certain of his medicals before they pull the trigger on him. If teams fall in love with Carson Strong at the Reese’s Senior Bowl, look for them to dive much deeper into his history during the medical evaluation process at the NFL Combine.
Carson Strong Scouting Report
- Top tier arm strength
- Displays great touch on downfield throws
- Clean throwing motion
- Ball placement in all areas
- Major risk taker
- His lack of mobility is constantly evident
Carson Strong is a three-year contributor for the Nevada Wolfpack. He possesses good height and solid weight for the quarterback position in the NFL. As mentioned previously, Strong should post one of the slowest 40 times at the NFL Combine. In 2021, Carson Strong led the Nevada Wolfpack to an 8-4 record and a spot in the Quicklane Bowl. He was able to record 4,186 yards for 36 touchdowns and just eight interceptions on the year. He was awarded Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year honors for the second time in his career.
The first thing that jumps off of Carson Strong’s film is his natural arm strength. Easily able to push the ball down the field, he can throw 65 yards with ease. While some believe this ability is overrated, it is still something the defense must respect. It also pops up in other areas as his velocity to all levels of the field is consistently great. This gives Strong the ability to put the ball into windows that other passers couldn’t even attempt. Strong may have the strongest arm in this draft class. Furthermore, he also displays good touch down the field making him an exciting deep passer. He does all of these things rather seamlessly as well as he couples them with a clean, easy throwing motion that allows him to get the ball out quickly.
However, while Strong does have a talented arm, he is not without flaws. To begin with, his ball placement is routinely off. This makes throws that should be easy completions far tougher and sometimes just incompletions. It also handicaps the offense as Strong’s inaccuracy limits the chances for a run after the catch. In addition to this, he has never seen a throw he didn’t think he could make. Of course, this works in his favor oftentimes in college as his arm can make it happen. In the NFL however, he will not get away with these passes as often. His lack of mobility could also prevent a problem. As NFL pass rushers become increasingly more athletic, a QB’s ability to escape becomes more and more prevalent, and Strong simply doesn’t have it.
Carson Strong you have my attention pic.twitter.com/KGBcKCE6zB
— Jason Willis (@JWillisScouting) December 15, 2021
Carson Strong NFL Draft Projection
As mentioned, the 2022 NFL Draft QB race is wide open and Strong has as good of a chance as anyone else to become the first passer selected. Of course, NFL teams love tall pocket passers with big arms, so he certainly has that going for him. Personally, I like Carson Strong and would take a chance on him, although I’d wait for day two or three on the NFL Draft to do so. For teams like Tampa Bay or Indianapolis, I believe he would be a good fit as he could sit and learn while also being a fit for what they do offensively.