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Mike Leach praises Gardner Minshew

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NCAA Football: Senior Bowl John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Many fans expected the Jacksonville Jaguars to pick a quarterback at some point in the 2019 NFL Draft with the eye of being a backup to Nick Foles and potentially develop into a replacement, however not many expected the team to roll the dice on Washington State’s Gardner Minshew. There were some smart people that named him as a target pre-draft, though.

Minshew is an interesting quarterback prospect who doesn’t like the ideal physical measurables that the NFL typically earmarks. He is a quarterback who is fun who played in an Air Raid offense under Mike Leach and it appears Leach had some glowing reviews for Minshew when NFL scouts called him up for information.

“He’s one of those guys who uplifts the entire team,” Leach told Andrew Siciliano on NFL Network. “The funny thing is, people would call me about him and they’d ask, ‘How’s his arm?’ His arm is good. ‘Is he accurate?’ I mean, I’m wondering if they’re real scouts if they start asking me if he’s accurate. And then, ‘How strong is his arm?’ And it’s running through my mind, Did you really watch his film? And then his pocket presence? He’s got great pocket presence, that’s probably what he does best — he doesn’t take negative plays.”

Minshew doesn’t have the strongest arm, but many would suggest it’s “good enough” for the NFL game, especially since Minshew projects most likely as a long term backup at the position. He possess a lot of tools, as some have described him as kind of a poor man’s Baker Mayfied, and there is no doubting his intangibles and leadership in the locker room.

As Leach is wont to do however, he finished off his point with an absolute gem about NFL scouts.

“And then they’d say, ‘How tall is he?’ I’d say, ‘Well, he’s exactly as tall as the all-time leading passer in the history of the NFL, Drew Brees.’,” Leach continued. “So then there’s this long, long, long pause, just really long. Because scouts have the ability to scrutinize and perceive life at a much higher level than you or I, mere mortals can.”