TCU QB Max Duggan spoke to the media on the opening day of the 2023 Reese’s Senior Bowl Tuesday morning and talked about his final season at TCU with the Horned Frogs and his transition from the college game to the NFL. Duggan was asked about what parts of his game he is wanting to showcase in front of all 32 NFL franchises this week during practice and the upcoming game. Duggan responded, not referencing a specific athletic trait, but rather his skill set above the neck as a point of emphasis for him this week in Mobile.
“I think just being able to show all-around football knowledge,” Duggan said to the media during the press conference. “Obviously, Senior Bowl…NFL it’s a little bit different than college. You’re going to huddle which a lot of teams don’t really do. You’re going to have to have some lengthy play calls. We had a group of men and things of that sort of just kind of run a whole operation, which is a little bit different than college style of play. And I think I’m excited to be a part of that, learn it, develop that, and get into that and it’s going to be exciting.”
From a physical standpoint, Max Duggan presents an enticing QB prospect to teams, standing 6’2, 210lb with the arm strength to take shots down the field as well as the mobility to create outside the pocket when the play breaks down with his legs. He was in the running for the Heisman in 2022, having a breakout season to the tune of 3,698 yards passing with a 63.7% completion percentage, throwing for 32 TDs to only eight INTs. He also racked up 423 rushing yards and nine TDs on the ground in 2022, displaying the skill set of a dual-threat QB.
Still, Duggan does have a long way to go regarding his development from the neck up as a prospect. He improved his accuracy and decision-making considerably this season compared to previous seasons, but he can be inconsistent when having to play outside of structure and the scheme of the TCU offense. Playing mostly in the college spread, Duggan will now have to show scouts that he can effectively work under center, memorize the playbook, and relay information to his teammates at a high level when much of these tasks didn’t fall on his shoulders in college.
College QBs who operate purely in the spread system often have a tough transition to the league, making their adjustment a difficult one. However, Duggan appears ready to take on the challenge as a likely Day Three prospect as the pre-draft process gets underway. Given Pittsburgh’s long-standing history of carrying four QBs into training camp and the uncertain future of Mitch Trubisky this offseason, the Steelers could be looking toward the draft to fill one of those spots on the roster. Duggan very well could be a name they consider to pair with Pickett and a veteran in the room, having key areas of his game he needs to work on, but also the physical tools that could fit well in Pittsburgh’s offensive system.