In the days and weeks leading up to the NFL Draft, CardinalsSource will profile 30 draft prospects who could end up making their way to Arizona this offseason.
Player: Mitch Trubisky
Weight: 222 pounds
Arm length: 32 inches
Hand size: 9 1/2 inches
College stats: 2014: 42-for-78, 53.8 completion percentage, 459 yards, five touchdowns, four interceptions, 2015: 40-for-47, 85.1 completion percentage, 555 yards, six touchdowns, no interceptions, 2016: 304-for-447, 68.0 completion percentage, 3,748 yards, 30 touchdowns, six interceptions
Strengths: Though Trubisky started for just one season at North Carolina, he vaulted himself into consideration as one of the top overall players available in this year's NFL Draft because of his impressive efficiency and outstanding pocket presence with the Tar Heels. When Trubisky plays the quarterback position, he looks like a natural doing so --a player with excellent eye discipline, good footwork, and a systematic decision-maker. When we watch Trubisky's film, we can't help but notice how consistent he looks in the pocket and how his mechanics are much crisper compared to some of the other passers in this year's class. Though there's still plenty of kinks for Trubisky to work out mechanically, he looks more polished and more capable of thriving in a pro-style offense because of the way he sees the field, sets his feet, and reacts accordingly. Of course, Trubisky wouldn't be in the conversation as a first round pick if not for his arm, which is both strong and accurate. Trubisky has great touch on intermediate throws, which is a trait that many of the other quarterbacks in this year's draft will need to improve upon.
Weaknesses: The greatest knock on Trubisky heading into this year's draft is the fact that he has such a small sample size of reps compared to most other quarterbacks entering the NFL. Trubisky didn't start at North Carolina until his junior season, and he wasn't exactly playing behind world-beaters as a freshman and sophomore. Additionally, with a limited number of starts under his belt, there are going to be questions regarding how comfortable Trubisky is taking charge of an offense, leading a team in adverse situations, and commanding an NFL huddle. Whether or not these issues are out of Trubisky's control is aside from the point, and the point is that it's hard for an NFL team to pull the trigger on a quarterback of the future if they don't have a significant amount of tape to watch on a given player. Another weakness of Trubisky's that we noticed is that he often misses his deep throws short --which is something that won't fly in a Bruce Arians offense. Additionally, he often tried to put too much touch on short to intermediate passes instead of gunning the ball to his receivers with haste. This is a bad habit and one that he'll need to eliminate before he can be trusted as a starting quarterback.
Trubisky's fit: In many ways, Trubisky has a chance to be an excellent fit for the Cardinals because he looks like a more polished player who would be able to step in and start should Carson Palmer retire after the 2017 season. However, it's unclear whether Trubisky has the same type of upside that a player like Patrick Mahomes or Deshaun Watson would in an Arians system, so it makes it hard to gauge whether he's the best available fit of the passers in this draft. In all likelihood, Trubisky won't be on the board by the time the Cardinals are on the clock with the 13th overall pick, and it's unlikely he's the type of player the team will want to trade up to pursue. There's elements of Trubisky's game such as his ability to spread the ball to the perimeter with ease and keep defenses honest with his eyes that make him a quality candidate to play in an Arians' offense, but it doesn't feel like the Cardinals and Trubisky are the match that we'll end up seeing come draft night.