28 April, 2023
Kentucky QB Will Levi was considered the #4 overall QB in the draft and #18 player on average by many of the industry talking heads. Here is a cross section of that data:
Position: No. 4 QB | Overall: No. 18 | Rating: 93.17 (All-Pro)
CBS Sports mock drafts
His stats were good but not great in our humble opinions here at FreePicksUSA
2022 – Kentucky- 185 of 283 attempts for a 65.4 comp. % and 2406 yards passing. 19 TDs 10 Ints and a 151.9 rating.
Nonetheless, the QB is sitting at home on this second day of the draft waiting for that fateful phone call. But there is no doubt the QB will get drafted today.
Joe Montana needs to buy Will Levis a Guiness on Thursday night if he was anywhere near Kansas City. Brett Favre can provide the Wranglers for the required change of clothes, and Tom Brady can deliver the Subway lunch.
It’s true that none of the more than 30 teams picked the Kentucky quarterback in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft on Thursday night. We all watched in agony as Levis and his family endured a torturous four hours in the green room of one of the most unpleasant reality shows ever broadcast.
But it’s also true that Levis is still in good company because the sun did indeed rise the following morning.
Levis will join an outstanding group of quarterbacks who managed to survive the first-round humiliation when his name is eventually called, most likely in the second round on Friday night.
Tom Brady, a seven-time Super Bowl winner who was selected in the sixth round in 2000, is the most well-known example of an NFL general manager making a huge mistake. However, this list of legends is astounding and features four quarterbacks who were inducted into the Hall of Fame and who together won 15 NFL championships: Johnny Unitas (102), Roger Staubach (129), and Bart Starr (199). Joe Montana was the 82nd player selected.
Also comforting are the quarterbacks who were selected in the second round of the NFL Draft, including Favre, Drew Brees, and Derek Carr.
Therefore, history suggests that there are still many stories to be told even though the first chapter of Levis’ NFL career needs to be completely rewritten. The chapter on atonement, which is due in roughly five years, will be the finest.
But first, one must pause and wonder what in the world occurred on Thursday night.
The simplest explanation is that it was a mathematical issue. Four quarterbacks were available and three clubs were in severe need of one, as seen by the selections of Bryce Young at No. 1, CJ Stroud at No. 2, and Anthony Richardson at No. 4. No quarterbacks were selected in the last 28 choices.
Young and Stroud were certain to be among the first five picks, but the Richardson over Levis decision generated the greatest debate.
With two SEC quarterbacks available, the Colts decided to go with Florida’s Richardson over Kentucky’s Levis. Given that Richardson had only made 13 career starts and has a below-average completion rate of 54%, analysts think that it was a major bet. He simply wasn’t a very good quarterback, to be honest. Richardson is, however, a phenomenal athlete, which has traditionally influenced NFL GMs who think themselves to be smarter than everyone in the room and anxious to demonstrate they are king makers. This does not necessarily correlate to strong quarterback performance. The archetype for this way of thinking is JaMarcus Russell, the Raiders’ regrettable first-round selection in 2007.
Despite having more accurate numbers than Richardson, Levis received criticism for his accuracy. He was also given minimal leeway for playing the 2022 season while dealing with two serious injuries, in front of an offensive line that had been completely rebuilt, and with a new offensive coordinator who had been sacked after only one season.
Only veteran NFL writer Chris Mortensen, who broke the Pudge Heffelfinger agreement with Allegheny in 1892, offered a plausible reason for the omission.
He wrote: “Will Levis’ left toe that caused him to miss two games last year was ‘problematic’ for one team that considered him. Levis says the toe has healed and good to go. Another team believes Levis could manage it but thought surgery would need discussion after season. Levis disagrees.”
Any health concern is cause for concern when millions are on the line. But so is selecting an untested athlete with a valuable draft pick. If Levis had been selected by the Colts but was sidelined by an injury, it is regrettable but understandable. If Richardson fails, someone will lose their job.
The second round has therefore begun. There are already rumors circulating that other clubs are looking to deal with Pittsburgh, who has the first selection, in order to acquire Levis for a far lower price. The Patriots trading up to acquire the Kentucky quarterback are the front-runner, according to RJ White of CBS Sports. Levis would be placed closer to his Connecticut home, which would be a perfect fit.
The Lions, who own the third selection, would be the most sensible destination for Levis in the absence of a trade. The Raiders are ranked No. 1, followed by the Titans (10), Falcons (13), Patriots (15), Lions (17), and Buccaneers (19). The Seahawks are ranked No. 6.
These facts regarding Levis are undeniable, thus some team is going to be rewarded regardless of the snub.
Before sustaining that toe injury against Ole Miss on October 1, he had a record of 14-3 in two seasons at Kentucky. He injured his shoulder two weeks later on a brutal tackle against Mississippi State. Levis never fully recovered, playing the last eight games in discomfort and without his skill set.
– With the power and velocity to make NFL throws into nonexistent windows, he possesses the finest arm of any quarterback selected in the draft.
– He has the ability to run the football, which is now a must in the modern NFL rather than a luxury. He is physically large, tough as nails, and in a league of his own for durability. Think Josh Allen, the quarterback for the Bills.
He is a natural leader and will control your locker room after one month.
— He is intelligent, earning a 3.97 GPA and a magna cum laude finance degree from Penn State in just three years.
He will become the face of your business, which is very important to NFL owners. Levis will never make your football club seem bad, and your supporters will instantly embrace him as a hero for his dedication to the team and his enthusiasm for the game.