This Drake Maye pro comparison will make Patriots fans excited

This Drake Maye pro comparison will make Patriots fans excited originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye has been compared to a lot of different pro quarterbacks in the evaluation process leading into the 2024 NFL Draft later this month.

He's been compared to stars such as Justin Herbert and busts including Mitchell Trubisky.

One NFL insider has a different take on Maye's skill set. Sports lllustrated's Albert Breer sees a lot of Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen in Maye, and he explained why during NBC Sports Boston's Arbella Early Edition last Thursday.

“I found a comp that I like on Drake Maye. He is Josh Allen, just a step down in just about every category,” Breer says in the video player above.

“And I think that physically maybe puts him closer to the ballpark of where Joe Burrow is. But he's got Josh Allen play-making traits, he has pop in his arm. He’s a really, really, really good athlete. There’s a lot to work with there.

Breer also sees similarities between the two quarterbacks' collegiate careers.

"And you look at the trajectory in college. Wyoming sort of peaked (in Allen's) second-to-last year there," Breer said. "He came back, the offense changed his last year at Wyoming, he lost a lot of teammates to the NFL. And he didn't look as good. There was more on him, and so he was running around like a chicken with its head cut off a bunch. That's sort of what happened with Drake Maye his last year at UNC.

"From talking to coaches who have started to call down there, and have started to look at the film, and then talking to the scouts who look at this stuff year-round, the first thing almost all of them say is how dreadful things were in North Carolina last year. The scheme was a mess because they lost the offensive coordinator the year before to Wisconsin. The personnel around him wasn't very good. Their top receiver was a guy whose status was in limbo half the year."

Allen and Maye are pretty similar in terms of size. Allen is listed at 6-foot-5 and 237 pounds. Maye is listed at 6-foot-4 and 230 pounds. Neither player is exceptionally fast, but both move really well in and outside of the pocket.

Much of the analysis around Maye's skill set involves his passing abilities, which are really impressive. But he often does not get enough credit for his ability to escape the pocket and pick up yards running the football.

He tallied 1,147 rushing yards and 15 rushing touchdowns over the last two seasons at North Carolina. He scored a career-high nine rushing touchdowns in 2023. Allen tied a league record with 15 rushing touchdowns last season.

Maye has a long way to go before becoming a player of Allen's caliber at the pro level. Allen is one of the league's top-five quarterbacks and a leading candidate for MVP on a yearly basis now.

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Setting realistic expectations will be important. Allen didn't become an elite quarterback until his third season. He threw for 30 touchdowns with 21 interceptions, while completing less than 60 percent of his pass attempts, over his first two seasons.

It could take Maye a similar amount of time to realize his potential, especially if he's drafted by a team like the Patriots that lacks elite weapons at the skill positions and doesn't have a top-tier offensive line. But the potential in Maye's game, and his ability to make Allen-like throws and runs, is among the reasons why he's one of the most exciting prospects in the 2024 draft class.

It's the kind of potential that is worthy of a No. 3 overall pick investment by the Patriots, assuming he's still available when New England is on the clock.