2017 NFL Draft
Prospect: Brad Kaaya
Prospect: Brad Kaaya
Ht: 6'4" Wt: 215
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There are not many quarterbacks that can match the career Kaaya has put together in his first three years at Miami. To walk onto campus and be named the instant starter of a big program is tough for any player at any position. To do it at quarterback is even more impressive considering the amount of mental preparation that is involved, and that is where Kaaya scores top marks. There have been some mixed results during his career, but we haven't exactly seen the typical group of Miami recruits surrounding him in the huddle. Still, what has scouts continuing to study the tape a second and third time, is the mental approach he has to the game.
Kaaya reminds me a bit of Eli Manning, but I will also point out that expecting him to have the same kind of success that Manning has at the NFL-level is what keeps me from making that his NFL comparison. He doesn't have good feet, but he does keep them active in the pocket giving him the opportunity to always throw from a solid platform. He actually bounces a bit similar to the way both Manning brothers did. That works well in the pocket, but when it collapses, he doesn't have the athleticism to outrun most defenders. That lack of athleticism will limit the offenses he can play in, but he does maximize his value by studying the game tirelessly.
His accuracy is outstanding on shorter throws where his arm strength isn't an issue but the more he pushes the ball down the field, the more we see that his arm is only above-average and his accuracy suffers. The good news is in the system at Miami he has been able to locate matchups pre-snap and take calculated risks down the field. That kind of west-coast scheme will likely be the best fit for him in the NFL. He does scan the full field in his progressions and anticipates well, which are both good attributes in this system. He also stays true to the clock in his head and knows when to get rid of the ball.
While he has a short, compact throwing motion, he can occasionally get sloppy and drop his release point. That is about the only time his accuracy has issues on the short and intermediate routes. His timing is usually very good, and he rarely looks late on his throws. He has also been mostly durable during his time at Miami despite having a very slender frame. He will, however, need to add some bulk if he is going to survive in the NFL.
Overall, I came into this season feeling Kaaya had a legitimate chance of being a first-round selection, and while he hasn't hurt his chances, I don't think he has helped them either. He studies the game and understands his limitations as good as any quarterback in the country, but his arm strength and bulk are still questions. Whether he is truly an NFL-caliber quarterback or just a game manager is in the eyes of each general manager. If a team has an established rushing attack or defense, I think he would be a much better fit, and given the right system, he could be worth a first round pick. His decision-making at the next level will be the determining factor if he ends up being worth a high selection or not.
Compares to (Current NFL Player): Sam Bradford (Minnesota Vikings)
- Terrific accuracy
- Active feet in the pocket
- Student of the game, coach on the field
- Adept at working through his progressions and anticipates well
- Not a great athlete
- Average arm strength
- Decision making sometimes falters
- Slender build
1)   Brad Kaaya is now Miami's all-time leading passer   - USA Today |
2)   'Canes QB Brad Kaaya's career-long rush draws praise - and some chuckles   - Sun Sentinel |
3)   Move The Sticks notebook: Scouts doubting Miami's Brad Kaaya
- NFL.Com |
4)   Brad Kaaya Twitter|
5)   Brad Kaaya Instagram|