Displays a smooth, over-the-top delivery and doesn't have any trouble with passes getting knocked down at the line. Looks comfortable on the move and is a good enough athlete to buy time for himself, keep his eyes down the field and create outside the pocket. Showcases a good feel in the pass game and has done a much better job as a senior deciphering defenses at the line, quickly going through his progressions and taking much better care of the football. Doesn't throw into traffic nearly as much as last season, and seems to have a much better command of the offense and his ability to locate secondary receivers. However, needs to do a better job moving his footwork along with his progressions. At times will fail to reset his feet and realign his body with the target, which again causes his accuracy to suffer.
Possesses average arm strength and nice touch down the field when he is able to step up into a throw. Improved his ability to improvise this season and looks affected when asked to get outside the pocket, keep his eyes down the field and make a sound decision on his run/pass option. Is a tireless worker, a real tape/gym rat who works hard, has a very high character grade and is the kind of guy you want leading your offense. Has a real calm/cool demeanor, doesn't get rattled and is his own biggest critic. Is the kind of guy you want to work with.
Impression: A nice-sized quarterback with good athleticism and a good enough arm to make all the throws. Matured as a senior, taking much better care of the football and doing a better job going through his progressions and reading defenses. However, his biggest obstacle to overcome at this stage is his inconsistent footwork. He's a good enough athlete to overcome it, but will need some time to mature in that area of his game."
Arm Strength: Stanzi has adequate arm strength with the ability to make all the throws. However, he doesn't throw a clean and crisp football. The ball appears to flutter and that is due to his tendency to throw flat footed and not drive off his back foot. Stanzi needs to work on generating power from his back foot and torque from his hips to get more zip on his passes. Overall, the potential and arm strength is present he just needs to refine some of this technique to maximize his results.
Decision Making: Protecting the football and making sound decisions is an area where Stanzi struggled while at Iowa. While I mention his struggles I have to make everyone aware of his improvements. During his Senior season, Stanzi worked to protect the football and dropped his interception total from 15 to 6. However, you still need to be aware of his tendency to force the ball into coverage.
Field Vision: While watching several Iowa games I got the sense that Stanzi didn't properly identify pre-snap blitz keys. This was especially noticeable during the Arizona game where the pressure resulted in several sacks. Stanzi's lack of pre-snap reads led to him not identifying his hot read and holding the football to long. He also struggles to diagnosis the post snap information in a timely manner. Stanzi's lack of anticipation allows defenders to get a jump on the football.
Mechanics: Stanzi has a balance and quick drop from under-center while keeping eyes down the field. He keeps the football above his chest and tight to his body. While going through his progressions, he struggles to set and reset his feet towards his target. He possesses enough athletic ability to reset his feet and body but mental lapses make him inconsistent in this area. Stanzi has a nice overhead delivering and he gets the ball out of his hands quickly. However, he doesn't routinely step in to his throws and generate power from his hips. This lack of proper footwork impacts the zip he gets on this throws.
Pocket Awareness: When faced with pressure, Stanzi stands tall in the pocket and remains calm. He possesses good athleticism and lateral movement which allows him to avoid the rush. Stanzi keeps his focus down the field searching for open targets.
Games Viewed: Arizona, Michigan State, Senior Bowl, Georgia Tech '09
Final Word: There are a lot of people out there that like Stanzi a lot but I am just not one of those people. There are things to like about his game but he is plagued with inconsistencies. That being said, I do feel that he is a 4th round prospect with potential. He needs to fine tune his mechanics and improve his decision making if he hopes to develop into a starter in the NFL."
Stanzi lacks elite arm strength.
Stanzi has work to do, as do most prospects, but in the most important aspects of the game, he appears to be ahead of the curve.
Stanzi makes up for what he lacks in pure talent with excellent game-managing, good decision-making, strong leadership, and understanding the game. Truly a cerebral quarterback that doesn’t get bogged down by mistakes and lets the game come to him. Has excellent size and build for the position. Raised his accuracy and dropped his mistakes in his senior year, as he continued to showcase his ability to lead his team and performer in clutch situations. Simply a gamer that doesn’t have the obvious big talent, but still performs at a very high level.
Was very consistent in 2010, and has experience in playing in a Pro-Style system. Faced solid competition and played in some big games during his career. Throwing motion and mechanics have improved over the years, and are no longer huge concerns. Has a short memory and great confidence, best displayed after throwing five interceptions in the first three quarters against Indiana before leading his team back for the win in 2009. Has under-rated athleticism and mobility, as well.
Stanzi’s biggest and most obvious weakness is his merely average arm strength. Older than most rookie quarterbacks (24), and combined with his physical limitations, his potential isn’t as great as other prospects. Prior to his excellent senior season, had a tendency to force the issue and turn the ball over. That seems to be corrected, but there is concern that his senior campaign was not the norm. Needs to do a better job at leading his receivers. Doesn’t have great footwork. His release and motion have improved greatly, but his set-up hasn’t caught up yet.
Overall, Stanzi has the mental make-up, size, and football IQ of a starting caliber quarterback. He possesses great leadership abilities, has improved accuracy and mechanics, and has solid experience. With his lack of upside, Stanzi should be looking at a selection in the third round.
NFL Player Comparison: Matt Cassel"
Their senior signal caller has been known for two things among scouting circles; forcing plays thus making mistakes, and a lack of top notch physical tools.
Stanzi will never be the most impressive prospect regarding measureables. He has nice size at 6-feet-4-inches tall and 230 pounds, but he is does not have a top notch arm or athleticism. He simply has trouble driving the football down the field.
Within Ferentz’s west coast based offense, Stanzi is a perfect fit. It is even more impressive considering he is not making the crucial mistake this season. Stanzi is having a breakthrough campaign completing 68.5% of his passes, throwing 19 touchdown passes (with only 2 interceptions), and totaling 1922 yards.
Stanzi has clearly matured as a field general. His greatest improvement has come in pocket awareness. The Iowa signal caller may not be the most nimble prospect, but he slides around the pocket with ease, a true testament to quarterback mobility. Then he is able to look off safeties and hit his receivers in stride."
Negatives: Average arm strength, nothing spectacular about this throws... Would like to see him lead his receivers better in the middle of the field, doesn't set up his receivers very well... Footwork has been a problem, he's inconsistent with his drop steps and doesn't always set his feet before throwing... Prior to this year, he appeared turnover prone... Not a great runner, gets chased from behind and doesn't have any open field moves when asked to take off with the ball... Limited ceiling because of his average physical talents... Will be 24 years old at the start of the 2011 NFL season."
Strengths: Possesses excellent size for an NFL QB. Tough player who will sacrifice his body to make the play. Excellent leader with valuable experience in a top conference. Plays in a pro-style offense and takes snaps under center and in shotgun. Possesses adequate athleticism and is able to move around the pocket and keep his eyes downfield on the move. Will work through his progressions if his first option isn't available. As a passer, possesses good arm strength and excellent touch. Throws a very catchable deep ball and has nice placement on those throws. Has good throwing mechanics from the waist up, with an over-the-top delivery that really limits knockdowns at the LOS. Appears to be one of the more NFL-ready QBs in this year's crop.
Weaknesses: Stanzi has decent arm strength, but he often negates that with terrible footwork and lower-body mechanics. Throws off balance or flat-footed too often, causing erratic throws. Really needs to be able to step into his throws to maintain consistent accuracy. He doesn't have great pocket presence. Often, he holds the ball too long and takes unnecessary hits as a result. Doesn't always appear to trust his reads and hesitates to let the ball go in time. Other times he reacts too quickly to the pass rush, not trusting his blockers, and gets jittery and forces a throw. Needs to really develop a consistent feel in the pocket.
Projection: Ricky Stanzi has his share of flaws and looks more like 15-year journeyman NFL QB than a bonafide starting QB prospect, but he's done enough to encourage a team (who is convinced that he can be coached up some more) to take him anywhere from the late 2nd to late 4th rounds of the 2011 NFL Draft."
Stanzi currently has a passing rating of 174.88, having thrown 16 touchdowns and only two interceptions.
His improvement is most notable in his completion percentage. Last year, it was 56.3, but has jumped over 10 points to 68.1 thus far. Stanzi has prototypical NFL size with an adequate arm that can make most of the throws NFL scouts are looking for. His decision making has been solid. More importantly, NFL coaches are looking for a guy who knows how to take care of the football and Stanzi has illustrated that ability in 2010.
There is a small push at the end of his throwing motion that he'll need to work on. This effectively slows his pass down, puts a little more air on it and slows the ball down. NFL coaches can clean up those small issues. Stanzi is a good prospect, but lacks characteristics that jump out at you immediately. He has limited mobility, an average arm and has accomplished few things in college. He'll need to continue to improve this season in order to justify the added attention he's been receiving this season.
Stanzi projects as a 5th to 6th round pick in the 2011 NFL Draft."
I watch him when he plays and think, this kid may have something to bring to the table. (Quick info about me, in the college football world I have no allegiance to any teams so expect no bias from me.) His mechanics seem better this season and seems to have fixed his biggest fault, turnovers. I am not a huge believer in Quarterbacks who only play well their senior season, but something seems big about his elevation of his game something that can only be called, maturity. He's now taken that season before and he's going out there and showing he is better then that.
On paper this QB is an ideal, 6'4", 230 lbs and running a pro style offense at the NCAA level. What's not to like? Looking at his passer ratting etc. 13 touchdowns to 2 interceptions, 68.3 pass % and his average pass is over 10 yards! And the icing on this statistic cake is the fact he's the leading the Big 10 in pass eficiency. Oh, and it doesn't hurt that his 70.8% completions and his win over the Michigan Wolverines gave him the Big 10 Offensive Player of the week. Keeping in mind his offense isn't "loaded" to say the least, besides WR Derrell Johnson-Koulianos he doesn't have many weapons with Shonn Greene's departure to the NFL last season.
Looking at his competition so far, not too shabby playing Arizona, Penn St and Michigan. This week Stanzi prepares for Wisconsin (the team that just knocked over the former #1 team in the nation Ohio State). Admitting that stats on paper aren't everything, but if Ricky Stanzi can keep together these stats and put together a statement of a season, playing the Wisconsin Badgers, Michigan St Spartans and the Ohio St Buckeyes, expect this quarterback's stock to rise. He has his work cut out for him but the scouts, analysts and fans will be able to see if Stanzi is just another Big 10 QB doing nothing in the NFL or could he be a starter at the next level.
I'm not saying he's a first rounder my honest prediction is he is a 3rd round pick, a high of a 2nd round pick and a low of a 4th. Mark my words this kid will be drafted, but he's got a long road between now and draft day, with the rest of the season, combines, pro-day and bowl games, senior bowls, but I'm pulling for Stanzi, not just because I want to avoid eating my words but because I feel he is a quality prospect has the tools to become a player at the next level."
He still makes some shaky decisions, forcing the ball into double coverage, and got flustered at the end of the Arizona and Wisconsin games when he was consistently pressured. But he has shown he will stand in the pocket in the face of the rush and deliver. He makes progression reads and has the tools to develop into a solid pro, even if he needs to learn how to anticipate better and develop more confidence. "
When I look at how these Scouts and Analysts regard a QuarterBack, I don't give a rat's ass about how far he can throw it on a wire, or how fast he runs the 40: Anyone who thinks that those Skills are the most critical ones in assessing a QuarterBack's ability to lead a team to a Championship have overlooked the last 90 years of History.
When I look at how these Scouts and Analysts regard a QuarterBack, 90% of my evaluation derives from comments on his Processing Speed, his Decision Making, his Field Vision, his Pocket Presence, and his Mechanics.
Ricky Stanzi isn't quite there, yet, but he took enormous strides forward, this year. The Pocket Presence and the Mechanics still need work, but his Processing Speed is good and getting better, as is his Decision Making and Field Vision!!
Even more importantly, he is by all accounts a Gym Rat and a Tape Junkie. This is a Scrapper with a great young tactical mind who is absolutely dedicated to his Craft. And no, I don't give a rat's ass about his arm: It's good enough to get the job done.
There are 7 QB currently rated ahead of Stanzi, and I like him better than all of them!!
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