Texas A&M Football: 4 Aggies who could be 1st-round NFL draft picks

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2020 Mid First Round: Nick Starkel, Quarterback

The 2020 NFL Draft could be HUGE for Texas A&M! There is so much talent for the 2020 and 2021 classes in Aggieland. There are two guys who could take off in 2018 and 2019 which will boost their draft stock to first-round potential. Let’s not waste any time and jump right in

Jimbo has coached up some incredibly talented quarterbacks in the past i.e. Christian Ponder, EJ Manuel, and Jameis Winston. All of those guys had successful collegiate careers and all three got drafted in the first round. Nick Starkel could very well be the next big quarterback under Jimbo’s wing.

The quarterback “controversy”

I happen to be the outlier on the matter that involves the quarterback competition in Aggieland. The majority of fans and a multitude of analysts think that this quarterback battle is going to be a tight one that comes down to in-game performances. I believe otherwise. Folks, it isn’t close. Nick is going to be the guy. Don’t get me wrong, I like Kellen. That kid plays loose, he’s an athlete, he can run like a gazelle and has a B+ grade for arm strength.

However, in Jimbo’s best years the quarterbacks were more pro-style than dual threat. Look at the data. We can all agree that Jamies Winston was marginally the best out of the three aforementioned quarterbacks. He’s the only one with a Heisman or any other award at that. He’s the only one with a National Championship let alone a conference title. He was a first pass kind of guy who used his footwork and throwing ability to win games. Starkel simply emulates Winston more.

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Why not Mond?

I just don’t see Mond coming that far along to surpass Starkel in the throwing category. There have been multiple times that Mond has missed his target and he wasn’t close. I know we’ve seen flashes like the corner route that he hit Kendrick Rodgers on at the Spring Game. However, if the Aggies want to get out of the hole that they’re in, they have to quit using the “Well, we’ve seen flashes” or the “Remember that one play when he did___” arguments. Using these arguments to establish reasoning behind choosing a starter in any position usually doesn’t lead to success, in any sport. The Ags need to see consistency. Consistently, Mond has not been good enough.

“But, he had a 6-3 record as a starter last year,” some of you may argue. Of those six teams, only one had a winning record and one was an FCS school. Let’s look at his completion percentage too. As a whole, it’s literally a coin flip whether or not it would be a completion (51.5%). There were five games in which he completed less than ten passes. In four of those games, his completion percentage was less than 46%. In the one game that wasn’t, the Aggies were playing New Mexico. They had an impressive record of 3-9 and went 1-7 in the Mountain West Conference.

Don’t get me wrong…

I know it may not seem like it, but I seriously like the guy. I wouldn’t be fair if I didn’t acknowledge that he had a ton of things go against him last year. After being thrown the reins in Los Angeles, Mond had to lead a panicking group of men to battle week in and week out. To his credit, he gave it 100% and had some great moments. Plus, his offensive line was in complete disarray. I don’t care who you are, if you don’t have a good offensive line, it’s going to be a tough season.

He’s a great athlete with a lot of upsides that maybe Jimbo will use to the team’s advantage. Maybe Mond will be used like Oklahoma’s Blake Bell from a few years back. Perhaps Jimbo will use him on goal line situations and for sprint and read options. I think there are a lot of things that Mond can do and I want to see him succeed, but I have to be honest. From what I have seen and from what the data tells us, Starkel is the better fit for the Aggies.