There is broad consensus that the two best quarterbacks available in the 2022 NFL Draft are Kenny Pickett from Pitt and Malik Willis from Liberty. As to which one of those two is the better prospect, well, that’s where the consensus ends.
While Pickett appears to be the most pro ready, Willis would seem to have more upside. The former Liberty signal caller has a big arm, able to hit anywhere on the field. Where he needs work as a passer is timing and anticipation, as well as getting up to speed on NFL offenses after playing college ball at a smaller school. He’s outstanding on quarterback runs. Defenders will have a hard time tackling him as elusive as he is. So even while some might consider Pickett to be more ready to play in the NFL as a rookie, Willis’ game as a dual threat is strong enough that there’s no reason to keep him on the bench while he polishes up as a passer.
So which team is most likely to pick Willis? Not surprisingly, with so many teams in need of a bona fide franchise quarterback, he’d fit in any number of spots. It might come down to which team has the chance to pick him first, or which team has and is willing to spend the draft capital to trade up for him.
Carolina Panthers +250
Pittsburgh Steelers +350
Detroit Lions +350
Atlanta Falcons +350
Seattle Seahawks +350
New Orleans Saints +1000
New York Giants +1200
Houston Texans +1600
Philadelphia Eagles +2000
Washington Commanders +2500
Indianapolis Colts +2500
The Lions have been connected with Willis via the rumor mill lately, and with the second pick in the first round, they could certainly land him without having to maneuver. The Panthers are the team that seems to come up with Willis most in expert mock drafts, and they’ve had him in for a top-30 visit.
Still, we’re going to go with the Lions here. They can let Willis come in and sit, if they want, behind Jared Goff for a year.
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