Colt McCoy, QB - Texas
Weight: 216 pounds
40 time: 4.79
When Vince Young left Texas, most Longhorn fans had no idea what was coming when redshirt freshman Colt McCoy was thrown into the fire in the first game of the 2006 season. Including that first game against North Texas in which Colt threw for 178 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions with a 63.2% completion percentage (12-19), he has gone on to start 52 games, going 45-7, setting the NCAA record for most wins ever by a college quarterback.
An unbelievably productive player in his four years at Texas, McCoy re-wrote the Longhorn record books in throwing for 13,253 yards, 112 touchdowns and 45 interceptions with a 70.3% completion percentage (1,157-1,645); his 70.3% completion percentage is .1% short of the NCAA record set by Hawaii’s Colt Brennan. He also was a very productive runner for the Longhorns, having rushed for 1,571 yards and 20 touchdowns during his career. Overall, he leaves Texas holding 47 different school records and is the only player in school history to be named a four-time team MVP. He’s also the first quarterback in NCAA history to lead a team to four-straight ten-win seasons.
While his 2008 season was the year he was runner-up for the Heisman Trophy and was the most productive year of his career (3,859 yards, 34 touchdowns, and eight interceptions with the best completion percentage in NCAA history at 76.7%), 2009 was the year when Colt was honored the most, having been awarded the Maxwell Award as the collegiate player of the year, the Davey O’Brien award as the nation’s top quarterback as well as the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award as the nation’s top senior quarterback; he was also the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year as a senior.
A very smart quarterback with tremendous instincts, intelligence, and intangibles at the quarterback position, McCoy is a proven leader at the quarterback position. As a passer, McCoy is deadly accurate in the short-to-intermediate throws with the pin-point accuracy needed to fit the ball into small spaces. He puts great touch on his throws along with the great timing and precision on his throws that I look for in a future starting quarterback in the NFL.
Colt was an extremely efficient quarterback in college who has solid mechanics along with a delivery that includes a quick release. McCoy has terrific pocket presence; he stands tall in the pocket (despite his lack of height) and has the mobility and escapability to beat a defense with his legs if he gets into the open field. He’s also shown the ability to consistently throw the ball on the run. Colt has shown the toughness to jump up after most hits that he takes down the field. He has some experience going through his progressions, however he is still a bit raw in this area and will need to spend some time at the next level learning how to go through his reads rather than just looking to a receiver is open and taking off and running if he isn’t. Colt’s arm strength is good, but not great; he is capable of consistently getting the ball down the field in the intermediate range, however he doesn’t have the strongest arm when attempting to throw the ball deep.
Colt played in a system at Texas that tended to pad his stats with a large number of short-to-intermediate throws in which his receivers caught the ball within 10-yards of the line of scrimmage and picked up added yards after the catch using their speed and athleticism. He played the majority of his career out of the shotgun and is going to need to take some time at the next level adjusting to playing under center in a pro-style offense. In the 2009 BCS National Championship Game, McCoy was knocked out the game with a pinched nerve in his shoulder; the injury also forced him out of taking part in both the Senior Bowl as well as the Combine. The injury isn’t expected to have any long-term effects and shouldn’t affect his draft status; if anything, it showed how much the game of football means to him; after the game he showed a lot of emotion from missing most of the game and having his career end that way. I project that McCoy will be drafted in the second-to-third round.
Colt McCoy grades out as a quarterback that will likely need at least a year or two of development at the next level as he adjusts to playing in a brand new offense. His best fit in the NFL could come in a west-coast offense where he will be asked to make more short-to-intermediate throws, which is what he did in college. Colt has all of the tools needed to make the jump to the NFL and to develop into a solid starting quarterback in the NFL. He may never be an elite player at his position, however he’s going to bring great character, leadership, and intangibles to a team at the next level. He has the makeup of a starting quarterback in the NFL.
Notes: Colt was named first-team All-American in 2009 and second-team All-American in 2008; he a four-time All-Big 12 honoree. Colt has good bloodlines, with his mom, Debra, having played basketball and his dad, Brad, having played football, both at Abilene Christian. A sign that his fit at Texas was perfect, Colt was roommates with wide receiver Jordan Shipley; at Abilene Christian, his dad was roommates with Shipley’s dad. Colt has two brothers; Chase plays wide receiver at Abilene Christian and Chance also is a quarterback at Texas. Coming out of high school, Colt was rated as the No. 73 player in the state of Texas and the No. 15 quarterback in the country by Rivals.com. Another sign of terrific character, Colt is a very active member of his community. In high school, McCoy finished his career with a 34-2 record, having thrown for 9,344 yards and 116 touchdowns with a 63.1% completion percentage (536-849); he ranked as the all-time leading passer in Texas 2A history and sixth-best passer in Texas high school history. He was also his team’s punter during his junior and senior year. As a prep, he also lettered in basketball where he averaged 17-points per game as a junior, as well as in track where he was a successful runner in the mile relay and the 100-meter hurdles.
The proliferation of the spread offense in college football means that few if any quarterbacks are “NFL-ready” their rookie season, and despite his tremendous intangibles McCoy falls into that category. Helping speed his development are a number of pro-level traits: he’s a proven winner and leader; he’s accurate, especially in the short-to-intermediate range; and he can throw on the run. Hmmm, sounds like the job description of a quarterback in a West Coast offense.
Even pro-ready quarterbacks who start as a rookie offer little in the way of fantasy value; despite all the accolades Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco or Mark Sanchez received during their initial NFL campaigns, they ranked 16th, 20th, and 23rd, respectively, in fantasy points. And since McCoy is going to need at least a year or two to get up to speed in the pro game, he has little to no value in redraft leagues. Dynasty leaguers will need to keep an eye on where McCoy lands; if he goes to a WCO system where he can hold a clipboard for a year or two before moving into the lineup—Minnesota, perhaps, or Washington under Mike Shanahan—he’ll be worth stashing away on a larger dynasty roster.