2023 NFL Draft

2023 NFL Draft Player Profiles: Alabama QB Bryce Young

From now until the 2023 NFL Draft, 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’ll be profiling Alabama QB Bryce Young.

#1 Bryce Young/QB Alabama – 5101, 204 lbs. (Junior)

NFL Combine


Player Ht/Wt Hand Size Arm Length Wingspan
Bryce Young 5101, 204 9 3/4 N/A N/A
40-Yard Dash 10-Yard Dash Short Shuttle 3-Cone
Broad Jump Vertical Bench Press

The Good

— Proven winner, 23-4 career record as a starter
— Has a great feel for manipulating rushers and moving to stay clean within the pocket
— Plus-athlete in open space, scrambles to throw, keeping his eyes downfield while remaining aware of oncoming rushers
— Has shown the ability to read through progressions, plays with a nice internal clock
— Can make off-platform throws with ease
— Can manipulate his delivery angles to navigate through tight windows and outstretched hands of defensive linemen
— Mature player, has shown a great understanding of when to throw the football away and live to fight another down
— Has great zip on his ball, particularly over the intermediate area of the field
—Anticipates throws, pulls the pin before receivers are even out of their breaks, allowing him to safely and effectively make high-level throws in traffic
— His well-timed quick game throws give receivers a chance to turn upfield and generate YAC
— Has a nice feel for when to hit his back on checkdowns
— Extremely creative and innovative player, has the utmost confidence to try new things in the heat of battle
— Brings point guard skills to basketball with no-look shovel passes
— Does a nice job to move zone coverage defenders with his eyes, draw them up into the bait zone to attack the live zone over their head
— Can place some really nice touch balls at times, perfectly dropping it in between defenders and along the sideline
— Has great timing on his deep ball, releases early to hit players in stride, allowing them to run under the ball despite a lack of prototype arm strength
—Capable deep ball thrower, can hit pass catchers inside from up to 55+ yards out
— Has the necessary wiggle to make defenders miss in the open field, may have some untapped upside as a runner
— Will consistently punish teams who fail to account for him in man coverage, escaping the pocket to pick up easy yards on the ground
— Clearly a high-IQ player, feels holes in coverages opening before they happen
— Has the arm strength and zip to connect on throws from far-hash to sideline in the shallow and intermediate areas of the field
— Can shake pass rushers in the pocket with subtle shoulder manipulation, Tom Brady-esque with more explosion

The Bad

— Obvious size concerns both with height and slight frame
— Occasionally rushes throws and fails to plant his feet when he feels the pocket closing
— Can get ragdolled as a ball carrier at the point of contact
— Deep ball lacks the velocity that he can put on short and intermediate throws
— Will sometimes be overreliant on his fastball when a touch pass may be better for the situation
— Often fails to step up into throws against pressure, throws off his back foot/heels to avoid taking hits
— Needs to clean up ball security when operating as a runner
— Holds onto the ball far too long at times, may struggle adjusting to NFL pass rush
— Occasionally tries to do too much rather than taking easy yards in extended play situations, although this comes with the territory and the good far outweighs the bad


— 624 CMP 8356 Yds 80 TDs 12 INTs 66% 8.8 Y/A 165.0 Rate
— 139 Att 162 Yds 7 TDs 1.2 Avg/A
— 2022: 245 CMP 3328 YDs 32 TDs 5 INTs 64% 8.8 Y/A 163.2 Rate
— 2022: 49 Att 185 YDs 4 TDs 3.8 Avg/A
— Only quarterback in Alabama history with multiple 3,000-yard seasons (2021-2022)
— Finished second in program history in both passing yards and touchdowns
— 2022 Sugar Bowl MVP
— Set Alabama records for passing yards (4,872) and touchdowns (47) in a season in 2021
— 2021 Heisman Trophy Winner
— 2021 Maxwell Award Winner
— 2021 Consensus All-American
— 2021 SEC Offensive Player of the Year
— 2021 First-Team All-SEC
—Consensus five-star prospect and number one overall dual-threat quarterback in high school

Tape Breakdown

In the modern NFL, few things are more enticing than the prospect of securing the rights to an elite quarterback on a rookie deal. Within the evaluation of quarterback play in the modern game, few traits are more important than mobility, particularly the ability to extend plays outside of the pocket and generate explosive plays in the passing game.

Enter Bryce Young, a former consensus five-star prospect who delivered on the biggest stage at Alabama, posting a 23-4 record as a starter, and leading the tide to an SEC title and a national championship game appearance in 2021, the same year in which he was named the Heisman Trophy winner.

In discussions surrounding the consensus top-two pick, the phrase “he plays with a point guard mentality” has often been mentioned. It’s tough to truly understand the rationale behind the statement until you throw on Young’s tape, where he brings a unique style to extended play situations.

In the pocket, Young can seamlessly shake pass rushers with subtle head and shoulder fakes, reminiscent of a smaller and far more athletic Tom Brady. Outside of the pocket, Young can effortlessly manipulate zone coverage defenders, opening intermediate throwing windows while on the move with his eyes and awareness of route concepts.

Young truly does bring a point guard-type flare to his game with flashy, no-look shovel passes that he can effectively execute on the move and in traffic. Whether by scrambling out of the pocket or hitting timely dump offs to his backs, Young has a great feel for punishing defenses that fail to account for his escapability in the pocket.

Similar to a point guard operating out of a pick and roll, Young is able to manipulate the defense on each rep below. He draws defenders toward him by keeping his eyes downfield and pressing the line of scrimmage, before flipping lookaway pocket passes to his backs. With his unique brand of mobility in and outside of the pocket, Young is able to produce explosive plays for his checkdown options in ways that few at the position can replicate.

With his point guard-style checkdowns, along with ability to tuck and run at any time, Young was virtually impossible to successfully play man coverage against at the collegiate level, unless a team was willing to dedicate a rusher as a quarterback spy. While not necessarily a player whose ability warrants designed quarterback runs, Young is more than capable of quickly identifying escape lanes from the pocket, where he has the necessary wiggle to make defenders miss in the open field.

Here, Young quickly identifies that Georgia has lost contain in its rush, leaving him able to escape to the left and outrace the designated quarterback spy into the end zone. While not necessarily a burner in terms of long speed, Young possesses quick change of direction ability and is able to identify escape lanes efficiently from within the pocket. His peripheral vision to feel the rush while keeping his eyes downfield shows maturity well beyond his age.

Naturally, Young is able to create some explosive plays downfield with his ability to extend plays and make throws from outside of the pocket. As he is able to manipulate throwing lanes and deliver accurate balls from awkward throwing angles, Young routinely is able to create extended-play situations for his receivers, in which they have ample time to separate at the second level for explosive plays. While he will likely need to pick his spots more against NFL pass rushes, even the premier secondaries will have a tough time plastering for 7+ seconds multiple times per game.

While he does not possess generational arm talent, Young’s timely delivery and ability to put nice zip on the ball allow him to throw well-placed deep balls that can travel up to 55+ air yards. Here, Young works from a five-step drop. Loading his weight on his back foot, he rifles a ball more than 50 air yards on a rope, squeezing it between two Georgia defenders downfield.

Young is more than capable of making throws at all levels of the field, particularly when working from a clean pocket where he is able to load up on his back foot and step up into his throwing motion. Likewise, he is able to lace some beautiful touch passes when delivering deep balls from inside of 45 yards. Young consistently releases the football before receivers are even out of their breaks, giving them ample time to run under the football and secure downfield targets in stride to convert explosive plays into touchdowns.



I came out of my evaluation sold on Bryce Young as the top quarterback in this year’s talented draft class. His ability to create out of structure at a high-level is tailor made for the modern NFL. While his play style certainly may come with some turnovers, particularly in the department of ball security playing behind what should be a less than stellar offensive line, Young could prove to be a high-level starter early in his career.

In terms of his NFL comparison, I found Bryce Young’s play-style akin to a cross between Fran Tarkenton and Steve “Air” McNair, although obviously possessing a vastly slighter frame than the late great Titan and former NFL MVP. Similar to both players however, Young simply defies logic with his ability to evade pass rushers both in and outside of the pocket, making him an absolute nightmare for defensive coordinators.

While there is plenty of buzz surrounding C.J. Stroud as the projected top overall pick, I would not be surprised in the least if Young winds up being the best quarterback in the class down the line. In today’s NFL, where nearly every Super Bowl contender is led by a quarterback who thrives outside of the pocket, Young is simply able to maneuver a pass rush in a way that few can match.

Projection: Early Round 1

Depot Draft Grade: 9.4-Pro Bowl Talent/Day 1 Starter (Top 10 Pick)

Games Watched: vs Cincinnati (2021 CFP), vs Georgia (2021 SEC Championship), at Florida (2021), at Texas A&M (2021), at Texas (2022), at LSU (2022)

Previous 2023 NFL Draft Player Profiles
OL O’Cyrus Torrence LB Jack Campbell WR Zay Flowers WR Parker Washington
DL Bryan Breese DT Jalen Carter OT Darnell Wright CB Joey Porter Jr.
WR Jordan Addison DL Siaki Ika DL Keeanu Benton CB Kelee Ringo
CB Cam Smith OT Dawand Jones LB Noah Sewell iOL Ulu Oluwatimi
LB Drew Sanders iOL Jarrett Patterson OG Nick Broeker OT Broderick Jones
WR Tank Dell iOL John Michael Schmitz CB Devon Witherspoon OT Paris Johnson Jr
LB Trenton Simpson CB Christian Gonzalez LB Henry To’oTo’o WR Jayden Reed
S Brian Branch DL DJ Dale EDGE Isaiah McGuire S JL Skinner
S Jordan Battle LB Isaiah Foskey LB Ivan Pace QB Anthony Richardson
EDGE Will McDonald OG Andrew Vorhees TE Michael Mayer WR Jalin Hyatt
C Ricky Stromberg CB Terell Smith CB Kyu Blu Kelly LB Dorian Williams
DL Jerrod Clark WR Ronnie Bell CB Emmanuel Forbes LB DeMarvion Overshown
OL Peter Skoronski OL Chandler Zavala WR Rashee Rice DT Gervon Dexter Sr.
CB Anthony Johnson OL Steve Avila LB Daiyan Henley DB Sydney Brown
DE Keion White CB Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson CB Julius Brents QB Malik Cunningham
OT Carter Warren DL Lukas Van Ness OL Cody Mauch OT Alex Palczewski
WR Marvin Mims DL Tuli Tuipulotu WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba RB Israel Abanikanda
DL Mazi Smith DL Calijiah Kancey WR Josh Downs LB Owen Pappoe
EDGE Truman Jones LB Jeremy Banks WR Puka Nacua CB Rejzohn Wright
TE Darnell Washington DL P.J. Mustipher DL Zachh Pickens EDGE BJ Ojulari
OL Matthew Bergeron EDGE Ali Gaye EDGE Nolan Smith DL Keondre Coburn
OG Emil Ekiyor Jr. ILB Mariano Sori-Martin CB Jaylon Jones OT Jaelyn Duncan
WR Rakim Jarrett EDGE Will Anderson DT Jaquelin Roy RB Tyjae Spears
CB Clark Phillips DL Colby Wooden WR Jonathan Mingo EDGE Viliami Fehoko
WR Jadon Haselwood EDGE Felix Anudike-Uzomah CB Darius Rush LB Mohamoud Diabate
CB Garrett Williams CB DJ Turner S Ronnie Hickman EDGE Nick Herbig
S Jammie Robinson EDGE Andre Carter C Joe Tippmann QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson
CB Deonte Banks CB Riley Moss EDGE Adetomiwa Adebawore WR Jalen Moreno-Cropper
LB SirVocea Dennis WR Cedric Tillman EDGE Byron Young DL Byron Young
OG Jon Gaines II CB Eli Ricks EDGE Yaya Diaby DL Cameron Young
IOL Luke Wypler DB Quan Martin TE Sam LaPorta TE Zack Kuntz
RB Tank Bigsby OT Anton Harrison TE Luke Schoonmaker EDGE K.J. Henry
DB Christopher Smith OT Isaac Moore OT Richard Gouraige CB Kei’Trel Clark
CB Mekhi Blackmon LB Shaka Heyward OT Tyler Steen S Trey Dean
OT Blake Freeland EDGE Mike Morris S Brandon Joseph WR A.T. Perry
DB Jay Ward EDGE Lonnie Phelps OL Ryan Hayes S Ji’Ayir Brown
EDGE Zach Harrison DL Karl Brooks EDGE Myles Murphy QB Clayton Tune
WR C.J. Johnson WR Charlie Jones TE Brenton Strange TE Travis Vokolek
CB Alex Austin DL Moro Ojomo DB Anthony Johnson TE Payne Durham
TE Dalton Kincaid CB Darrell Luter Jr. EDGE Thomas Incoom EDGE Jose Ramirez
RB Xazavian Valladay LB Ventrell Miller CB Tyrique Stevenson EDGE Eku Leota
OT Wanya Morris WR Demario Douglas QB Max Duggan DB Jakorian Bennett
DL Cory Durden WR Mitchell Tinsley QB Adrian Martinez RB Devon Achane
WR Antoine Green RB Eric Gray CB Cameron Mitchell OL Chris Murray
LB Marte Mapu RB Roschon Johnson WR Xavier Hutchinson LB Amari Burney
S Daniel Scott WR Andrei Iosivas OL Joey Fisher TE Tucker Kraft
LB Ben VanSumeren WR Tre Tucker RB DeWayne McBride EDGE Yasir Abdullah
S Antonio Johnson S Jason Taylor II WR Quentin Johnston EDGE Derick Hall
RB Zach Evans WR Bryce Ford-Wheaton DB DeMarcco Hellams LB Carlton Martial
EDGE Jordan Wright QB CJ Stroud DL Brodric Martin RB Deuce Vaughn
WR Justin Shorter S Tanner Ingle WR Tyler Scott RB Jahmyr Gibbs
WR Kayshon Boutte QB Hendon Hooker DL Garrett Kocab QB Hendon Hooker
QB Will Levis RB Mohamed Ibrahim EDGE Tyree Wilson


To Top