Top landing spots for top QBs in 2022 NFL Draft after latest signings and trades | Launderer’s report

Darron Cummings/Associated Press

The start of the NFL’s new year has brought on a quarterback movement frenzy.

Teams that many had considered taking a quarterback at the start of the 2022 draft have solved the problem this offseason through signings and trades.

While some clubs are out of the QB market altogether – the Denver Broncos patched their most glaring hole by trading for Russell Wilson – others could still be rolling the dice on a first-year caller as an insurance policy. .

The Pittsburgh Steelers are a decent bet to do so after signing Mitchell Trubisky to a two-year contract, knowing full well how badly he fared on his last chance to start.

Although the pool of available QB talent has shrunk considerably, a handful of viable starters are still up for grabs. Jimmy Garoppolo, Baker Mayfield and Gardner Minshew are the three quarterbacks most likely to be dealt ahead of the 2022 draft.

But barring any trades for this trio, here’s a look at where the top five 2022 QB prospects would fit best if the April 28-30 draft took place today.

Seattle Seahawks: Malik Willis, Liberty

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The Seahawks are looking for a starting QB for the first time in a decade.

After going through the worst season of the Pete Carroll era, the Seattle brass chose to chart a new course without Wilson.

Jacob Eason and Drew Lock, the latter of whom came in the trade from Wilson, are the top two quarterbacks on the roster. The team also discussed the return of outgoing replacement Geno Smith, according to NFL.com’s Kevin Patra. Still, with no viable succession plan in place, the Seahawks would be better served taking Malik Willis at No. 9.

Seattle acquired the top 10 pick from Denver — along with three other top picks — as part of the Wilson deal and could turn that pick into their quarterback of the future.

Willis possesses the same kind of elite athleticism and intelligence that made Wilson a successful NFL flagger. He’s adept at getting things moving and threatens to turn a broken play into a home run.

Bleacher Report’s scouting department also cited the Liberty product’s arm strength, build (Willis is nearly 6’1″ and 219 pounds), and competitive nature as reasons he’s a top prospect.

Although Willis is not a clone of Wilson, he has many of the same skills. He may not find immediate success against NFL defenses as he adapts to the speed and talent he’ll be up against, but the upside is undeniable.

Although the Seahawks are likely starting a rebuild, the addition of Willis could get them through quickly and have them fighting again soon.

New Orleans Saints: Matt Corral, Ole Miss

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The Saints started the post-Drew Brees era in disappointing fashion.

The quarterback was a revolving door through injuries, and none of the four players the club started last year seemed like a long-term solution.

Although New Orleans retained Jameis Winston, the front office shouldn’t object to using a draft first pick on a caller.

The Saints have the No. 18 pick, a spot where they can likely land Ole Miss’ Matt Corral, who has a chance to turn into a better version of Taysom Hill for New Orleans.

The 23-year-old is much younger when he arrived in the league – Hill was already 27 at the start of his first season – and is an equally excellent athlete.

The Rebels star also plans to be a better passer. B/R’s scouting department called him a “fast-twitch player who can break fake plays” and noted Corral’s consistency and speed upon his release.

Although his arm strength won’t blow away spotters, he’s accurate on his short and medium range throws and can place the ball in a tight window.

Corral may not be the biggest prospect at 6’2″, 212 pounds and has yet to adjust to pro-style offenses, but he should do well under the tutelage of offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael Jr.

Carmichael helped make Winston a much more polished passer than he was with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The QB published top efficiency numbers through seven games before his torn ACL last year, and Carmichael could have a similar impact on Corral.

Should he travel to New Orleans, Corral plans to be the team’s eventual replacement for Winston and a future starter.

Detroit Lions: Kenny Pickett, Pittsburgh

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The Lions may have finished with the second-worst record in football, but this team was tougher than its record suggests.

Detroit is a few upgrades away from the competition after losing six games by a score or less. A quarterback is the most needed addition, as Jared Goff doesn’t seem to be the answer at Motor City.

The No. 1 overall pick in 2016 went just 3-10-1 in his first year starting for the Lions. He completed 67.2% of his passes for just 3,245 yards and 19 touchdowns against eight interceptions while earning a 60.7 PFF substitution rating.

Replacing him or Kenny Pickett, arguably the finest signalman in his class, could make Detroit’s offense perform at a higher level in 2022.

Pickett just looks like a franchise quarterback, standing over 6’3″ and weighing 217 pounds. He’s not a world-class athlete, but he’s above average in that area and can create in outside the pocket.

The B/R scouting department noted his firm grasp of a variety of concepts during his four years in charge of Pittsburgh’s offense. During that span, Pickett displayed good arm strength and accuracy at all three levels, particularly on the court while moving outside the pocket.

If he can learn to stand in the pocket more consistently — rather than trying to burst when not needed — Pickett should improve on the 114 sacks he’s taken with the Panthers.

Although Goff remains under contract for at least the coming season, it wouldn’t come as a shock if he was relegated to the bench for Pickett early in his career.

The 23-year-old looks set to make an instant impact, and the Lions are the perfect place for him.

Pittsburgh Steelers: Desmond Ridder, Cincinnati

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The Steelers are heading into uncharted territory after starting Ben Roethlisberger every season since 2004. Big Ben’s retirement has left the organization scrambling to find a replacement.

Although the team distributed a two-year contract Worth as much as $27 million to Trubisky, the former Chicago Bears quarterback has yet to prove he’s a viable starter.

Trubisky, the No. 2 pick in 2017, never got a PFF rating above 66.4 and passed away in the Windy City after four seasons.

Some think the 27-year-old may have rehabilitated his career by working behind Josh Allen and studying with Brian Daboll with the Buffalo Bills last year, but the Steelers should have a back-up plan in case Trubisky doesn’t. would not have improved since leaving the Bears.

Desmond Ridder could be that insurance option if the team takes him at No. 20.

The Cincinnati star had a solid performance at the combine and appears to be the most balanced of the new generation of rookie QBs.

The B/R scouting department is high on Ridder, identifying him as their top QB and No. 16 overall in the Class of 2022.

Ridder’s height – he stands 6’3″ – elite athleticism, footwork and pocket movement were noted as some of his best attributes, pairing well with good arm strength and ability. to monitor his progress at a high level.

He sometimes “tried to do too much” for the Bearcats, but seemed to settle in as a senior and had his best year ever in 2021.

The Steelers are likely to give Trubisky the first shot no matter who they take in the 2022 draft, but catching a player like Ridder could well set them up for the future.

Washington Commanders: Sam Howell, UNC

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The Commanders are another team that brought in an underperforming veteran quarterback this offseason.

The organization coughed up capital to acquire Carson Wentz from the Indianapolis Colts, but shouldn’t be too confident in the 29-year-old’s ability to turn things around in the nation’s capital.

Wentz only lasted one season at Indy after heading to a trade from the Philadelphia Eagles. He lost his job to Jalen Hurts in 2020 before failing to guide the Colts to the playoffs in 2021.

Washington will want to have a younger prospect to develop this season in case Wentz disappoints again. Sam Howell looks like an ideal QB to prepare to become the team’s starter down the line.

The B/R Scouting department thinks the UNC product would be a great fit for a team that doesn’t need to see an immediate return on investment.

Commanders hold the No. 11 pick but would likely want to get Howell when they’re next on the counter at No. 47, perhaps trading to secure him if he’s still on the board before Day 2.

There’s a lot to like about Howell, including a sturdy build – he’s nearly 6’1″ tall and tips the scales at 218 pounds – and a powerful arm that lets him throw a nice deep ball.

When connected, Howell showed good accuracy. There are concerns about his inconsistent footwork and other poor mechanics, including a slow release that stems from an over-the-top throwing motion.

He’s also coming off a Tar Heels offense that relied heavily on run-pass options, meaning Howell will need time to work on progressions and reads before he’s set to succeed.

Still, commanders can afford to be patient with the 21-year-old. Wentz is essentially on a year-to-year contract through the 2024 campaign with zero dead money if released after the 2022 campaign.

It may take a few seasons to bring Howell up to speed, but the potential is clearly there for him to become the future starting signalman for Commanders.

Salary cap information via Spotrac unless otherwise stated.

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