Terry Shea has been around a bit. He's coached in the NFL and was by the side of Bill Walsh as offensive coordinator at Stanford. He knows quarterbacks. He's the man quarterback agent Tom Condon brings in to prepare his top clients for the NFL draft.
Tyler Wilson worked under Shea's eyes for a little over two months at Brandon, Fla., this month in preparation for the NFL Combine and pro day on the Arkansas campus. The former Razorbacks quarterback, the 2011 All-SEC quarterback, made a believer out of Shea. He called Wilson everything you'd want in an NFL quarterback and person.
"If I was looking for a quarterback this year, Tyler would be my top pick," Shea said Wednesday. "I know who is out there and I've seen them. I respect them, too, but from what I've seen in Tyler's game film and the skills I saw this winter, I'd take Tyler. He's a great person and his work ethic is second to none in those that are in his quarterback group."
That's the problem, though. Not many NFL teams see quarterback as their top priority for the 2013 draft coming up later this month. Those that were looking for a starter stocked up in the 2012 draft.
Shea thinks Wilson would be an early first rounder in most years, but it may be that he doesn't go until late in the first round or early to middle of the second round.
"That's what it sounds like as far as the interest that Tyler's getting and who I saw at the pro day in Fayetteville," Shea said. "I'd guess first round based on his ability, but it may be that he's destined for the second round this year.
"I think Buffalo is coming in for what they call an NFL-approved visit, but even Buffalo has already done something at quarterback with one of those so-called bounce back quarterbacks. Several others that needed a quarterback got them in trades.
"Last year, there were quite a few teams that took early picks and have their starters. Last year, Tyler would have gone early in that bunch. So this year is somewhat different than in previous years.
"So those teams that took quarterbacks in the last couple of years, they are going with another position in their first pick. But some of those will not be able to pass up Tyler in the second round.
"It's just not one of those years where need drives up the quarterback position. I still think there are going to be some teams that when he falls to their pick, they are going to look at him as better than what they may have."
Shea encourages NFL teams not to wait too long.
"I think everyone is going to be talking about Tyler in a couple of years," Shea said. "He's that good. His football intelligence is way up there. He's got unbelievable skill. Anyone who saw him throw at pro day saw great skill.
"Some of these NFL teams may have a good quarterback, but they aren't ignorant. They see Tyler's talent. He's tough, he can make plays and he knows the NFL offense. They are going to want to improve themselves with Tyler Wilson."
Shea said he's not seen the John Gruden Camp episode with Wilson. He was hopeful that Gruden gave Wilson extensive time on the white board to show his skills in Xs and Os.
"How did that go?" Shea said. "Tyler told me it was going to be on, but I didn't see it yet. I look forward to seeing it.
"I do know that I spent hours with Tyler on the board. He's impressive. He knows it. He can talk it."
Shea was excited to know that Gruden's on-field time with Wilson included a lot of throwing on the move. That's one of the skills that Shea showcased in the pro day workout that he built for Wilson.
"I thought that his pro day throws were similar to what Robert Griffin III did in his pro day," Shea said. "Robert had a great pro day, but Tyler did just as well. His skills in that workout were impressive."
Shea should know. He handled Griffin's pro day last year, too.
"The summary for Tyler this year, I'm just not sure how many teams are looking for a starting quarterback right now," he said, noting first-round picks are normally used to fill open slots in the lineup.
"But I do think some of these teams will be glad to get a real quality number two quarterback. I'll say this to you, an Arkansas writer, in two years, you are going to get to write a great story about Tyler Wilson."
Terry Shea: Wilson Top QB
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