2023 NFL Draft

2023 NFL Draft Player Profiles: Houston QB Clayton Tune

From now until the 2023 NFL Draft takes place, we will scout and create profiles for as many prospects as possible, examining their strengths, weaknesses, and what they can bring to an NFL franchise. These players could be potential top 10-picks, all the way down to Day 3 selections and priority undrafted free agents. Today, I will be profiling Houston quarterback, Clayton Tune.

#3 Clayton Tune, QB, Houston (rSR) — 6024, 220 lbs.

Combine/Pro Day


Player Ht/Wt Hand Size Arm Length Wingspan
Clayton Tune 6’2 1/2”/220 9 3/8 31 3/8 75 3/8
40-Yard Dash 10-Yard Dash Short Shuttle 3-Cone
4.64 1.55 4.25 6.89
Broad Jump Vertical Bench Press
10’2” 37.5 16

The Good

— Good pocket awareness/feel for pressure
— Works through his progressions
— Able to torque his body on the move and make accurate throws
— Good ball placement with touch
— Nice deep ball with good arc
— Comfortable in play action, throws in rhythm
— Good speed and vision to gain yards on the ground
— Toughness; will stand in there and take the hit
— Lots of experience and improvement from year to year

The Bad

— Arm strength is adequate, doesn’t drive the ball
— Doesn’t use his body/step into throws; uses all arm
— Avoids tight window throws
— Trying to make plays leads to INTs off back-foot throws
— Intermediate level throws are often low in the middle of the field
— Anticipation and timing are a touch late
— Doesn’t give receivers a chance for yards after the catch on outside throws
— Several overthrows on sideline go routes


— 2022: 334 comp, 496 att, 67.3 comp%, 4,074 yards, 8.2 Y/A, 8.9 AY/A, 40 TD, 10 INT, 158.9 QBR, 128 carries, 544 yards, 5 TD
— Career: 956 comp, 1,497 att, 63.9 comp%, 11,994 yards, 8.0 Y/A, 8.2 AY/A, 104 TD, 41 INT, 148.6 QBR, 412 carries, 1,248 yards, 15 TD, 1 reception, 21 yards
— 47 games, 42 starts
— 3-year captain
— First team All-AAC 2022
— Senior Bowl invitee
— Third nationally in TDs, fifth in passing yards per game
— 25 career victories
— 3-star recruit out of high school
— Received a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration and Finance
— Birthday 3/23/1999 (age 24)

Tape Breakdown

With only two quarterbacks on the roster the Steelers will need to bring in two more for training camp to fight for the number three spot. Some teams look to follow Bill Parcell’s 7 rules for drafting quarterbacks. Kenny Pickett hit all seven rules. So does Clayton Tune of the University of Houston.

Tune played most of the time in shotgun or pistol but did take snaps from under center. He has good posture and bounce in his drop and very good pocket presence. Using good footwork and good spatial awareness he has a good feel for pressure while keeping his eyes down field. He will step up and through gaps to either side to get outside while looking for receivers. His body control is good on the move, allowing him to torque his body and make throws on the run. He is willing to stand in there and take a hit while making the throw.

Versus Texas Tech, Tune (3) passes up on the corner route, moves to his left and displays good torque to put the ball in a catchable position even thought it was dropped.

Versus SMU, here is Tune again throwing on the move to his right. Puts it in a catchable spot but this too was dropped.

From the pocket, Tune is good at working through his progressions to find the open receiver and shows good placement on balls in the underneath area. Houston’s offense ran a lot of screens, curls, shallow cross and flat routes. In the intermediate area, he displayed better anticipation on dig routes and had nice touch on the deep out. He throws a nice deep ball with good height for the receiver to go get it and displayed good placement inside on post routes and had a couple really nice drop it in the bucket throws on the outside. On play-action throws, he looked very comfortable in rhythm getting the ball out after the fake.

At Texas Tech, while sliding to his left, Tune makes a nice throw down the middle of the field.

On the outside deep ball, he had several overthrows but this one was dropped in the bucket.

At Tulane, this was the best throw I saw. On the corner route, he drops it over the short level defender nicely. The throw could have come out quicker though.

One more touch throw. With a free rusher bearing down on him, he puts this in the perfect spot in the back corner of the end zone.

As a runner, Tune had seven games last year with double-digit carries. The majority of those came on designed QB draw plays or scrambles. He has good speed and makes good decisions on when to run and when to get down. On the move, he has solid balance, play strength and the vision to make some big runs.

Versus SMU, he shows he can make plays with his legs as well with this 55-yard touchdown.

At Tulane, nothing is open downfield, so he wisely tucks it and runs for a 15-yard gain.

Overall, his arm strength is just adequate; Tune uses mostly just his arm rather than the whole body. He rarely steps into throws and there is not a lot of zip on the ball. Fitting the ball into tight windows is not his forte. His intermediate-level throws to the middle are often low. On deep outside throws he is a tad late putting the ball on the sideline (deep out/drive/corner), not giving the receiver a chance to run after the catch. The anticipation to throw into windows isn’t there; Tune waits to see if the receiver is open first. Deep throws on the go/fade routes outside were often too long. Throwing off his back foot led to interceptions.

Versus Kansas, he works from his right back to the middle of the field. He doesn’t stride into the throw and the ball is low. Saw this several times on this route.

Versus Kansas, this is a deep out to the right. Tune gets the completion, but he releases the throw late and lead the receiver to the sideline taking away a chance for yards after the catch.


Tune has a ton of experience and hits all seven traits on Parcell’s list. He shows poise and toughness in the pocket and works through his progressions. The majority of his throws were accurate on the short level and he displayed solid placement with the ball on the intermediate level. On deep throws, he showed better accuracy inside but throws a pretty deep ball. He is athletic and can run the ball, showing speed, toughness and vision on designed draws and scrambles.

Areas to improve include working on his mechanics to not just be an arm thrower. This could help with his arm strength, which in turn could lead to tighter-window throws. Tune also needs to improve his anticipation and throwing into windows and getting the ball out quicker on throws toward the sideline. He also needs to give his receivers a chance on go routes rather than leading them too far.

Tune was a three-time captain and showed improvement every season. Houston ran a spread offense with a lot of passes in the short area with occasional shots down the field. Sound familiar? At the Combine, he said he was working with quarterbacks coach Jordan Palmer to improve his mechanics so that is a good sign. His best fit is in a West Coast or spread offense. With no big improvement, he looks like a guy who can have a nice career as a backup. With improvement, maybe he can earn a starting job at some point.

There is a lot to like here and the Steelers like the productive college quarterbacks (Ben Roethlisberger, Mason Rudolph, Kenny Pickett, Landry Jones). If they can add an extra pick or two, I can see them going for a guy like Tune to eventually be the #2. For a comp, I’ll go with Taylor Heinicke, who has similar size, moves well in the pocket, has toughness and adequate arm strength.

Projection: Early Day Three

Depot Draft Grade:  7.0 Backup/Special Teamer (Late 4th – 5th Round)

Games Watched: 2022 – At Texas Tech, Vs Kansas, Vs Tulane, At SMU

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