Tom Savage QB Pittsburgh
Measurables: 6'4 228 lbs 31 5/8" arms 9 5/8" hands
Testing Results: 4.97 40 yard dash, 27" vertical, 105" broad jump, 4.36 20 yard shuttle, 7.33 3 cone drill
Scouting Notes: Started his career at Rutgers and enjoyed an outstanding season as a true freshmen setting Big East freshmen passing records for yardage and touchdowns and being named teams most outstanding offensive player. He suffered a hand injury as a sophomore and struggled making only four starts. He transferred to Arizona and sat out the 2011 season, but never played for the Wildcats after deciding Rich Rodriguez's system didn't fit his skill set, he sat out a second consecutive transfer season in 2012 after not being allowed to transfer back to Rutgers and ultimately deciding on Pittsburgh. Savage finally returned to the field in 2013 with the Panthers and completed 61 percent of his throws for 2,958 yards 21 touchdowns and nine interceptions, though he only threw three of those picks in his final nine games. Savage has a big league NFL arm capable of making every NFL throw with velocity, he can spin the deep out with ease from the far hash, has a terrific well balanced and consistent set up and a quick 3/4 delivery. He has an effortless delivery, capable of putting zip on the ball and driving it over 60 yards down the field with relative ease. Everything from his set up to his release is ultra smooth, very fundamentally sound as a thrower. Has outstanding ball placement and throws a very catchable pass, doesn't lose accuracy deep as he throws one of the best and most accurate deep balls in the draft class. Misses high more often then he does low which isn't ideal and can lead to turnovers. Had a hard time finding a good fit, but he finally did so and ran a pro style offense with great efficiency at Pittsburgh. Not a great athlete but he gets the most out of the athletic ability he does possess by having a good feel for pressure, and a good internal clock. He can sense blindside heat and likes to spin out of the pocket to buy time but needs to use that internal clock to get rid of the football rather then try to scramble so often. Always looking to throw the football when he does scrambles, keeps his eyes down the field. Needs to get in the habit of climbing and stepping into the pocket more rather then spinning out and losing ground, doesn't have the speed to run away from NFL pass rushers so that habit will lead to huge losses of yardage. Doesn't panic, remains calm and composed under pressure. Holds on to the football a little too long, he's a bit slow going through his progressions, but he also never played in the same offensive system two years in a row so we have yet to see how much he can grow into a system and understand his progressions from year one to year two. In his one year at Pittsburgh he was too slow going through those progressions, locking onto and staring down his primary receiver far too often. He was victimized by too many drops by his receiving corps which hurt his completion percentage. He won't beat you with his legs, but he's a tough kid who isn't afraid to pull it down and run it when nothing else is there and pick up what he can.
Bottom Line: Savage is a quarterback who is soaring up draft boards as the draft draws nearer. Every year, GM's across the league look for that next Tom Brady, that quarterback who has slipped through the cracks in the scouting community due to a lack of athletism or a perceived lack of upside. Savage is an interesting prospect, he has as strong an arm as any quarterback in the 2014 class, but he was never able to get settled into one place and one system for very long so there's a sense that we haven't seen just how good he can be, The tools are there, he has as strong an arm as anyone in the 2014 class and has outstanding throwing mechanics that he does an excellent job of repeating on a consistent basis. Don't be misled by his having transferred multiple times, he's considered to be a high character guy and earned enough respect at Pittsburgh that he was named team captain in his only season under center there....Displays a high football IQ on the field and is said to have an outstanding work ethic off it. Now I won't go as far as to say this Tom is the next version of that other more famous Tom up the road in Boston, but if you're looking for a late round project as a pocket passer, Savage has the size, pocket presence, arm strength, throwing mechanics, and football IQ to develop into a competent NFL starter somewhere down thre road with the right coaching and in the right system.