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2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Bo Nix

The hierarchy of quarterbacks in this 2024 NFL draft class has felt well-established for some time. Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, and Jayden Daniels, all in that top echelon, should most likely be at worst three of the opening five selections come draft day. Then you get to that second tier, which by most accounts goes in some order of Michael Penix Jr., J.J. McCarthy, and Oregon's Bo Nix.

A Heisman contender in both seasons at Oregon after transferring out of his dad's alma mater Auburn, Nix's draft stock is all over the place in the middle of February. Some people have him as a top 20 outright player in this class, others I know personally not even a second-round guy. Before this report, I leaned far closer to that second option, but there's tape to be watched at the end of the day. Does Nix warrant legitimate round-one consideration? Here's what I got.

Player Bio

Name: Bo Nix

Jersey: No. 10

Position: Quarterback

School: Oregon (by way of Auburn)

Class: Super Senior

Height: 6'1" 

Weight: 210 lbs 

Games Watched: vs. Georgia (2021), vs. Georgia and Utah (2022), vs. Texas Tech and Utah (2023)

Player Breakdown

Arm Talent (12/15)

Not on the level of a Maye or Williams, but Nix can make a healthy majority of NFL-caliber throws. He lacked zip on out breaking stuff downfield, which was a problem in the 2022 games and gives me some concern, but Nix is capable of throwing a very solid deep ball as far as positives go.

Accuracy (12/15)

While Nix threw for a completion percentage over 70 percent in both years at Oregon, his overall ball placement downfield needs improvement. Not hitting guys in stride on in-breaking stuff was an issue, as was sailing passes because of some shaky footwork (more on that later), but you did see it improve, albeit only a little bit, as you moved through the seasons. Going downfield, Nix wasn't perfect, but had some solid enough accuracy more often than not.

Decision Making (11.5/15)

While there are several other examples of how suspect Nix's decision-making is at times, this one play right here against Georgia in 2021 drove me insane in real time.

This all happens fairly quickly, but Nix's initial read is on the near side, with the near side safety beginning to shade down on the go route out of a two-high shell, and he did a good job of coming off of that right away. Nix messes up bad when he comes off his only other read after pump-faking to return to his loosely bracketed near-side look. Why he decided to come off his second read here, almost instantly, with not a soul over the top on that side of the field, I have no idea, but that's a play where he needs to stick with that secondary read for a bit longer and let it rip.

There are some other good examples of Nix not making great decisions: starting down a guy the entire way before throwing a predictable interception against Georgia a year later. Attempting to hit a long out route from the opposite hash against Utah in 2023, resulting in a pick. Trying to do too much in scramble mode like we talked about earlier, etc.

Progressions (8/10)

Especially at Oregon, a lot of what Nix was asked to do was a lot of one-read, designed short area stuff. Can't get on him too much for that since there's a good chunk of college guys doing the same, and he's certainly capable of working through multiple reads. How he processes and reacts to what's in front of him can be an adventure, but you saw a handful of solid decisions on secondary stuff.

Pocket Awareness (8.5/10)

In his earlier games, I thought Nix's internal clock was a tad suspect, but by the time I wrapped up that last game, I came away confident enough in his ability to sense when his time in the pocket was about to run out. The biggest thing he needs to fix is simply not turning his back to the line and running backward at the first sign of pressure, but he did show improvement there the more you saw of him.

Anticipation/Touch (8/10)

Simply due to the kind of offense Nix was running at Oregon, there weren't a ton of opportunities to see him make some tight window throws, or create space with his eyes, but as far as the former area goes, I thought Nix did a good job of hitting most of his tight-window throws (mainly intermediate at best throws), and displayed some good zip for a guy who isn't an arm talent freak.

Out of Structure (7.25/10)

When things broke down up front, Nix had an infuriating tendency to do way too much, running back upwards of 10 yards to try and double back around to either sideline, Somehow in just the games watched here, I believe I had him down for only a pair of sacks on about a half dozen of these plays, but there's so much that can and will go wrong at the next level.

While Nix is a mobile quarterback and is certainly capable of making plays out of structure as a passer, he has the same issue as Caleb Williams in that he can be guilty of simply trying to be Superman. And the bigger problem with that is Williams is just a better quarterback and has the natural ability to hit some of those freaky plays. Nix, not so much.

Mobility (8.75/10)

I knew Nix wasn't a statue in the pocket, but his ability to move is a great element of his game. Both at Auburn and Oregon, they got him moving in a variety of ways. Whether on designed bootlegs, read options, the occasional draw, etc. While I'd also say his escapability is also a positive trait, he's not exactly a track star, and could have some trouble winning foot races against some faster linebackers and edge guys working laterally.

Mechanics (2.25/5)

My biggest issues with Nix all relate to his mechanics as a quarterback. There were plenty more than a handful of occasions where he either faded away into throws or made some poor throws off the backfoot. Very reminiscent of Mac Jones from 2023 in that department, and like the Patriots signal caller, Nix doesn't have that true high-end arm talent to make up for it like Maye or Williams. While Nix has shown the capability of stepping into throws on tape, this was an alarming issue at times and should be a stress point from the second he enters an NFL building.

Player Summary

All things considered, this is about where I expected to land on Nix. I saw him play better the more I got to see, but it wasn't close enough for me to say he's a round-one caliber talent, let alone a round-two guy. There's a lot of mechanical stuff (mainly footwork) he needs to clean up a great deal, and he simply isn't on level with the top guys in this class from an arm talent standpoint. Now, despite the third-round grade here, I could understand why a team would take him a round earlier, and I wouldn't hate the overall thought process. It'd probably have to be a team like the Giants or Vikings, but the best-case scenario is that he sits in year one with the opportunity to start in year two.

Rookie Projection: Backup/Low-End Starter

Third-Year Projection: Mid-Tier Starter

Final Grade (78.25/100): Mid-3rd-Round Talent

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