In the last week or two I've developed a bit of an interest in Nathan Enderle, the quarterback from Idaho. It's certainly not because of his statistics, because those are pretty average. Instead, it's because of his intangibles and his similarity to another quarterback I like and respect: Enderle reminds me a lot of David Garrard. Before everyone rushes to judgement, let's consider the value that Garrard has brought to the Jaguars. He was a fourth round pick and has become a 5-year starter for the team. Especially considering the information Alfie compiled about drafting QB's early, Garrard represents an excellent return on investment. Anyways, enough about Garrard, let's talk about Enderle.
Enderle excels in the short-to-intermediate passing game. He does not throw the best deep ball, but has very good zip on his throws, and can fit passes into very tight windows. The system he played in required him to make quick reads and throw the ball short fairly often. His intelligence is one of his strengths, and he was Peyton Manning-esque in Idaho's offense, making reads and calls at the line of scrimmage. Enderle also has a lot of starting experience. He is a mobile quarterback who moves well inside and out of the pocket, and scrambles to throw and not to run.
The negatives attached to Enderle are much like Garrard's. Because of the pressure he faced in college, his accuracy numbers are lower and his interception numbers are higher than one would like. When under pressure, he will throw some passes he really shouldn't, and he is not always willing to get rid of the ball or take the sack, instead deciding at times to force passes into coverage. There are some concerns about his throwing motion as well.
Enderle has the potential to grow into a starting-quality quarterback, and at the least will be a solid backup throughout his career. His throwing mechanics are imperfect, but he has amassed over 10,000 yards passing and set a school record for passing attempts at Idaho with over 1400 attempts. He is expected to go around the fourth or fifth round in the draft, though some think he might slip farther down than that. Gene Smith and others within the Jaguars organization have said that they are looking for a developmental quarterback. I believe that is what Enderle is. He's not ready to start, but he has the intelligence and the experience to be an interesting prospect.