Thursday, August 15, 2013

Recruit Breakdown: David Blough

Ceiling: 8.25               Ranking: 5.5               Floor: 3


School: Creekview (Charrollton, TX)

Size: 6'1" - 185 lbs.

Composite: 3 Star, 0.8498#40 Pro, #821 Overall

247: 4 Star, 90, #15 Pro. #238 Overall

Rivals: 3 Star, 5.5

Scout: 3 Star, #38 QB

Favorites: Purdue (Commit)

Strengths
  • Very good quick release with great arm and wrist snap for good ball velocity
  • Capable of putting the ball over top of the defense and drop the ball in a barrel with little wasted hang time
  • Moves well within the pocket and has good footwork at this stage
Very good at stepping up into the pocket and escaping out of the natural lanes that form by pass rushers getting up field. Little wasted movement going from read to throwing motion; ball doesn't extend much behind helmet and is snapped forward quickly at a height just about at the top of his helmet. Really has a quick arm snap and gets a lot of good spin on the ball. Finishes with arm on throwing side of the body, snaps wrist and releases toward target, finishing with his hand to the target. This greatly improves ball speed in the air and also accuracy. Can put the ball in the air and has very little extra air on it; ball drops down quickly over the top of defense. Short passes get on receivers quickly and can be fit into small windows. Good enough athlete to move about the pocket, works to get shoulder back up field and does a good job utilizing body torque along with proper follow through to get good velocity on the ball, even when rolling to the left. Capable of hitting both short passes with velocity or long passes over the top while on the move. Good footwork on drop and set, climbs into pocket, quick to release to the sideline. Gets depth quickly on drop, giving time to set and look around field. Gets feet set and shoulders directed to target before delivering the ball on short passes. Not afraid to step into hits in order to get the ball to where it needs to go.

Weaknesses
  • Size will cause issues for him for several reasons
  • Will struggle to attack the middle of the field
  • Not great pure arm strength, won't be able to attack far sideline
Size could be an issue. Will struggle to see over offensive line and not get ball knocked down by defenders. With his height, you'd like to see a higher release point and an ability to switch arm angles; this would help him get the ball over the top of defenses, allow him better access to the middle of the field, and would allow him to manipulate the pocket without the hesitation involved with moving his body because he would be throwing directly into passing windows. Could improve the speed at which he resets and gets into throwing position on 1 and 3 step drops. Not great pure arm strength, but throwing motion covers up a lot of it. Don't think he's capable of a straight drop and hitting the far sideline. His accuracy on his deep ball is also a little less consistent as he's forced to put more body into the throw, but overall this is an above average aspect of his game. Will be forced to move the pocket in order to attack all areas of field. Didn't see much intermediate game, including seams and dig routes. Possible that he struggles with reading (though he will throw the inside slant), also possible that he struggles with intermediate touch to put the ball between LB and safety level. Height very possibly has something to do with this, as he can't get a high enough release to really drop it in that quickly at that distance.

Video
 

Comments
From a pure passer standpoint, there are few that are better than Blough at this stage and there may not be a single QB in this B1G class that can out throw Blough. He has great ball velocity, spins the ball well, and has the technique to have great accuracy with his passes. Slants and short hitches, attacking short zones should be a strength for Blough going forward. While he doesn't have the arm strength to attack the far sideline, he is capable of putting more air on the ball and pushing the ball deep and over the top of defenses and moving the pocket to shorten the his throws. He can manipulate the pocket with good footwork and athleticism, and throws the ball well on the run, getting his hips and shoulders in proper throwing position.

The biggest worry, by far, is Blough's ability to attack the short and intermediate middle of the field. Height will be an issue in terms of seeing this area. He also has a low release point, meaning the passes will tend to get knocked down. The other significant thing that release point means is that it will be difficult for him to get the ball on a trajectory to drop the ball over the DL and in front of LBs or behind LBs and in front of safeties. What this means is that he always needs a clean passing window to throw to his receivers on anything intermediate in distance or shorter. If a team has good safeties, defenses can run a lot of cover 2 and really shrink windows, and Blough could struggle forcing the defenders to gain a lot of depth on their drops as he'll struggle to hit anything over the top that isn't over top of the entire defense. Also, if Blough is forced to roll to attack the sidelines, zones and windows will further shrink, and his ability to add touch will become more important. As a pure thrower, Blough is very advanced, but the questions in his game are extremely significant.

Projection

  • QB
  • Could potentially see early playing time, as mechanics are advanced for age
  • Simplified short pass concepts (slants, hitches) that allow him to attack between the numbers and the EMOL without having to attack the middle of the field.
Blough is advanced for his age as far as mechanics. But his limitations force a fairly specified offense for him to fit in. Likely Blough will require an offense that utilizes a slot, whether that's from under center or more of a spread look isn't a necessary requirement. He's a good athlete, but not great and won't require designed runs for him. I like how fast he gets back in his stance from under center, and despite his height, may excel from there. However, shotgun would allow him to see the field better, as height is a concern. It also potentially allows him to get the ball out quicker before defenses can drop into zones and shrink passing windows, forcing Blough to use more touch. I think Blough is best being paired with a downhill run game, one that forces the safeties up, either to be an extra man in the box or to cover up inside the alley. If he can get a good downhill run game, then he can threaten over top of the entire defense, and this would allow the underneath passes to open up more. 

If he improves vision and release height, along with possibly learning to change his arm angle to attack throwing lanes, and can really threaten the middle of the field, then the ceiling is very high for Blough. His ceiling is likely similar to former Texas QB Colt McCoy. If he can't improve his passing over the middle, he could struggle to attack defenses all together. As a baseline, he's likely to be a QB that can be really successful against less athletic defenses that struggle a bit more in pass coverage, and then turning around and struggle against faster, more athletic defenses that can close down windows outside the box and force Blough to prove he has touch and ability to see and throw into the middle of the field.

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