News & Analysis

PFF scouting report: C.J. Beathard, QB, Iowa

By PFF Analysis Team
Apr 1, 2017
San Francisco 49ers

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Iowa quarterback C.J. Beathard warms up before an NCAA college football game against Maryland, Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015, in Iowa City, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Name: C.J. Beathard

School: Iowa

Position fit: Developmental QB

Stats to know: Ranked 13th in the draft class in adjusted completion percentage at 73.5 percent. Had the third-highest percentage of drops in the draft class at 9.1 percent.

What he does best:

  • Fluid quick release with a natural whip arm.
  • Arm is powerful with consistent zip at each level of the field.
  • Athletic enough to evade defenders in the pocket and pick up valuable yards with his legs, tough runner.
  • Good understanding of timing routes and anticipates well outside the numbers.
  • When playing within the structure of the offense can be very efficient.
  • Shows the ability to throw guys open in tight man-to-man coverage.
  • Experience taking drops and diagnosing defenses from under center.
  • Has flashed ability to work through pro-type passing progressions.

Biggest concerns:

  • Questionable touch, flat ball thrower.
  • Throws off balance too often (falls back and left) leading to accuracy issues.
  • Very limited with his feel in the pocket and vision is inconsistent to work through progressions consistently.
  • When forced to reset to second or third read, accuracy dips quite a bit.
  • Doesn’t look comfortable making plays outside the scheme.
  • Good fair amount of “pick and stick” to his game.
  • Questionable decision-making late in the down. Tries to make too much happen and forces a good amount of throws.
  • Questions if he can change speeds on the ball or if everything is a fastball.

Bottom line: Beathard’s arm is very good, as he can make the majority of NFL throws. He is a fastball thrower, with little to no finesse in his game of being a true passer. When he is playing in rhythm and knows where to go with the ball, he delivers on time and accurately. Certain throws required to throw up and over defenders he struggles with, as he needs a clear lane to throw through. The biggest questions come with his feel in the pocket and ability to see the field clearly to consistently get through reads, as well as decision-making particularly late in the down. Beathard’s arm and overall game is enough to warrant a late-round selection and a chance to develop as a third-string QB.

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