Will Drake Maye end up an NFL Draft bust like Mitch Trubisky?

Whichever NFL team ends up with former UNC quarterback Drake Maye will be extremely lucky.

Tar Heel Nation got a front row seat to Maye over the past two seasons, watching him tear apart opposing defenses with his strong arm and ability to extend plays with his legs. Maye captured the 2022 ACC Player and Rookie of the Year Awards, then found himself in contention for the Heisman Trophy last year.

I feel confident that Maye will enjoy a successful NFL career, but it’s worth noting that a recent North Carolina alum, Mitch Trubisky, hasn’t enjoyed a ton of professional success.

Ahead of Thursday’s NFL Draft, USA Today’s Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz listed Maye as one of his 11 boom-or-bust prospects.

“Finding the next Josh Allen or Justin Herbert is one of the optimal routes for any franchise to flip its fortune,” Middlehurst-Schwartz wrote. “Easier said than done, of course. There are only so many passers who can attack the entire field thanks to top-notch arm strength and comfort throwing on the run, and even fewer who can still patiently operate from the pocket when defenses try to take away the big play.”

“At North Carolina, the 6-4, 223-pound signal-caller often looked the part of a future No. 1 pick, dazzling with deep shots and off-platform throws on the move. But an overreliance on those rare tools seemed to create a tendency for Maye to play hero too often. Bad habits followed, from iffy decision-making and fluctuating footwork to erratic ball placement and poor processing. All that makes Maye an uneasy projection, especially for any team investing a top-five pick. A good number of his most pressing problems should be resolvable with proper coaching.”

Listen, I love Mack Brown as a coach. There’s no doubting UNC’s offense was among college football’s elite during Maye’s two seasons as a starter (7.929 passing yards, 62 passing touchdowns, 1,147 rushing yards, 16 rushing touchdowns), but there’s a reason several coaches have been in the NFL for so long.

A majority of mock drafts have Maye taken either by the New England Patriots or Washington Commanders. New England is led by former player Jerod Mayo, while Washington would have Maye playing under Dan Quinn, who led the Atlanta Flacons to Super Bowl LI (28-3 ring a bell)?

Follow us @TarHeelsWire on X and like our page on Facebook to follow ongoing coverage of North Carolina Tar Heels news, notes and opinions.

Story originally appeared on Tarheels Wire