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Road to the Draft: Blake Bortles

Blake Bortles

Position: Quarterback
School: Central Florida
Measurements: 6-foot-5, 232 pounds.
40 time: 4.93 seconds. Hand size: 9 3/8 inches.
2013 stats: 3,581 yards, 25 TDs, 9 INTs, 68 percent completions.
Draft projection: Top 10.

Lowdown: Bortles is a pocket passer with the elite size and body type that is coveted in a first-round QB prospect. He’s not a runner, but he has good mobility and ran the read-option offense at Central Florida. He can throw on the move and can make NFL throws. He was only a three-star recruit out of high school in Orlando, playing in a conservative offense, and picked UCF over Colorado State and Western Kentucky. He wasn’t high on fans’ radar after 2012, when he passed for 218 yards a game, 61st in the nation. But he led the Knights to a 12-1 record in 2013 and threw for 275 yards a game, 18th in the nation. He led a Fiesta Bowl win over Baylor. The question: Is he an elite enough talent? Bortles is more inconsistent than one would like when he faces pressure. His footwork needs a lot of development. He throws too many passes when his feet aren’t set. His career record: 22-5. Could be the first overall pick.

They said it I: “Really good arm strength, I wouldn’t say elite, I’d say really good. I think the word for this kid is potential. He’s young. He’s got a lot of work to do. I can see that on tape. … He’s potentially a franchise quarterback.” – NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock.

They said it II: “I am not going to deny that this player has talent, but I do feel that he would have been better served staying in college and developing his game. He is far from being ready to come into the NFL and play. There is too much inconsistency in his overall game.” – Greg Gabriel, National Football Post.

The Buffalo News is profiling 50 prospects in 50 days leading up to the NFL Draft.

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