I tend to favor production over potential, but that’s not the case with Ohio State quarterback Cardale Jones. Jones exploded onto the scene in 2014 winning a National Championship with solid performances in his first three starts to end the season in place of injured starter T.J. Barrett. Jones choose not to enter the NFL Draft but opted to return to Columbus as a junior in 2015. After five inconsistent performances, Jones lost the starting job to Barrett. Jones finished his college career as a backup but boasts all the tools to someday burst onto the scene in the NFL the same way he did in the Big Ten.

Cardale Jones | Quarterback, Ohio State

Measurements

Height – 6′ 5″
Weight – 253 pounds
Year – Junior

At First Glance

BCS National Championship 2014

Projected Round:

3rd Round

Pros

Big and athletic.

Has a cannon for an arm and can make all the NFL throws in a vertical system.

Can drive the ball down the middle of the field with velocity.

Stands tall in the pocket with the size, toughness and durability to take shots.

Good mobility to escape the pocket.

Cons

Very raw and will need time to develop.

Relies too much on arm strength and doesn’t alway step into his throws.

Inconsistent accuracy and decision making.

Can hold the ball too long.

NFL Player Comparison:

Daunte Culpepper, Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings Slant

Vikings fit? Yes

The Vikings will be looking to add a fourth quarterback before training camp. Finding one with size and arm talent may not be a bad idea. Paul Allen, play-by-play voice of the Minnesota Vikings said on KFAN FM 100.3 Nine to Noon program that the Vikings have an interest in taking a quarterback in the upcoming NFL draft. One potential candidate he said they could be considering is Cardale Jones.

How important is 2016 for Teddy Bridgewater and Adrian Peterson? Well, Zimmer has sent a clear message that there will be no more excuses and it’s time to go now. Yes, Zimmer is serious about his quest to be more than just NFC North Champions and that could mean no position is exempt from drafting future competition.

The Vikings have few holes to fill in the stating line up, so, drafting a quality backup quarterback with future starting potential could happen as early as the third round.

Jones, affectionately known as “Twelve-Gauge” around Buckeye country, is 11-0 as a starter completing 166 of 269 throws (61.7 percent) for 2322 yards, 15 touchdowns and 7 interceptions.

Built for a pro-style vertical passing attack, few quarterbacks in any draft can match the exceptional tools and arm strength Jones has to offer. The Big-Armed passer stands tall in the pocket and rarely appears rattled. His quick over-the-top release, smooth mechanics, and improved accuracy will have the Vikings looking at as much film as possible. Jones will need time to develop, but under the right coaching staff he has the potential to emerge as the top signal caller in this class.