2023 NFL Draft: Will Levis scouting report
What will certainly be one of the more polarizing players in the draft, the Kentucky quarterback had a rough closing to his season and it will be interesting to see if his natural talent will shine through as he enters the 2023 NFL draft.
Here is everything you need to know about the Wildcats signal caller:
The physical talent Levis brings to the table is immediately apparent when you watch him. Levis has a lighting-quick release that explodes from his hand — which is attached to a cannon as he boasts one of the strongest arms in the class. He has prototypical size, is gritty, experienced, and understands the system he plays in and in general, is in command of his offense. Teams will salivate at what Levis could become with his rare skill set and combination of experience, arm talent, toughness, size, and athleticism.
Not only does Levis make plays outside the pocket with heavy bootleg calls and scrambling ability, but he can also be used as a running threat in general and must be accounted for on any given play lest he burst out for a chunk play with his feet. While he was not primarily used as a runner in college, it may be necessary to design him runs early into his NFL career as an added threat should he start right away.
He combined these traits to have a modest final year of college, with 21 total touchdowns and ten picks. The year before when he had a more abundance of talent to work with, he was able to produce 33 touchdowns and had over 375 rushing yards. It remains to be seen how teams will evaluate the drop in production, but his talent and leadership in both seasons was apparent.
There are a lot of question marks surrounding Levis, ranging from his drop in production to his poor decision-making. He often locks onto receivers, forces footballs into closed windows, and holds the ball far too often attempting to find a bigger play than allowing what is in front of him to flow as a more natural quarterback. He will essentially need to be rewritten as a quarterback and allowed to naturally develop in the NFL around a patient coaching staff that can build an offense heavily favored around his athletic ability.
His decision-making cannot be ignored and there will be red flags for teams going into the decision to draft him. All the tools are there, but there were some frighteningly ugly games where he played far too much “hero ball” and handed the ball to the other team.
Will Levis has the makings of a top talent in the NFL, you simply cannot teach someone how to have the release, arm talent, and athletic ability that Levis possesses. Teams will be hard pressed to pass up on a talent like his, even if it means ignoring some of the obvious red flags that comes with his quarterbacking. His leadership and experience in NFL style offenses will only come to help him, as he is obviously coachable and can be molded into an ideal starter for someone in the league.
Projection: First round selection