Mike Mayock craves attention
Mike Mayock, the “NFL Media analyst” as NFL Network describes their draft “expert”, recently made waves along with an increase in attention for ranking Marcus Mariota ahead of Jameis Winston on his list of quarterbacks for the NFL draft.
Just about every draft pundit has Winston as their number one quarterback heading into the draft, for good reason. Winston was 26-1 as a starting quarterback for Florida State, bringing home one National Championship; he also has all the tools NFL teams look for in a quarterback: great arm, unbelievable accuracy, decent mobility, and tremendous leadership on the field.
I am not saying Marcus Mariota is a chump prospect, he definitely has the tools to succeed at the next level, but he is not close to Jameis’ level. Mariota screams system quarterback, so if Chip Kelly wheels and deals to land his prized pupil, sure he might be a huge success in the NFL. However, if he goes to a team that does not support the spread, hurry-up concept, Mariota’s future could be doomed. For that reason alone he should not be ranked number one.
Let’s give Mayock the chance to sound credible. He went on NFL Network, in an attempt to back-up his claims, and gave these two reasons why Winston is not the better prospect:
1. On-field- Mayock immediately went to Winston throwing 18 interceptions last season, saying Florida State had, “arguably the best talent” on their team. Yes I can agree, but not on offense. The Seminoles had a very talented defense that will have multiple players drafted within the first two rounds of the NFL Draft. The offense however, lost a lot of talent from their National Championship team that included top WR Kelvin Benjamin, top RB Devonta Freeman, and starting center, Bryan Stork. Those are the most crucial positions for a quarterback, and the Seminoles offense brought in a lot of younger players to fill those roles, that ultimately were not as successful.
Winston was also asked to throw more, and shoulder more of the offensive load in 2014, that resulted in almost 100 more pass attempts. Florida State cruised through their schedule in 2013, leading in just about all contests by double digits, therefore Winston was not asked to make ‘pressure-throws’. In 2014, the Seminoles were tasked with making multiple fourth-quarter comebacks, all on the shoulders on Jameis Winston. That would be the reason for the increase in interceptions Mike.
2. Off-field- Mayock has a better case in this one, as Mariota seemingly is the golden-boy prospect, while Winston has issues all-over the place. Or does he? Besides the allegations of sexual assault, in which charges were never filed, let’s look at his other “issues.” Stealing crab-legs and yelling a stupid phrase in a student union, not exactly murder, or even DWI.
Personally, I am not a fan of Winston as a human being, he seems stuck-up and cocky, but what 19 year-old that has more talent and ability than anyone he has ever met, that I’m sure was given free-rides a lot in life, would not be that way?
On the field is what matters to an NFL team, winning championships. Winston is better at that than Mariota. Mike Mayock saying otherwise is cry for attention when no one will look his way. Mayock always seems to make ridiculous claims leading up to the NFL Draft, and it is not really a surprise, he becomes irrelevant once again after it’s over. The NFL Network started the process of removing Mayock from America’s lives when they took him off Thursday Night Football coverage, now if NBC can take note with Notre Dame games.
Dan Schalk cringes when he hears Mike Mayock’s voice, you can follow him on Twitter @ffsportstalk