As the quarterback setting continuously develops, the pursuit to locate the following vibrant playmaker for the NFL proceeds apace. Recently we have actually seen Joe Burrow and also Zach Wilson arise from loved one obscurity to energize the university football landscape. After a marvelous period for Liberty in 2014, will Malik Willis be the following QB to make a comparable jump in advance of the 2022 NFL Draft? He’s made considerable interest with the offseason, however does Willis’ scouting report verify or toughen up the buzz around the Blazes professional?
Malik Willis NFL Draft Account
- Placement: Quarterback
- Institution: Liberty
- Present Year: Redshirt Elder
- Elevation: 6′ 1 ″
- Weight: 215 extra pounds
Malik Willis Scouting Report
A dual-threat quarterback with one year of beginning experience at the university degree, Willis is a vibrant playmaker with both his arm and also his legs. At 6′ 1 ″, he will not be the highest quarterback in the course, however the NFL should not hold that versus him. At 215 extra pounds, he has an outstanding construct to stand up to the raised physical roughness at the following degree.
That enables Willis to play the video game with excellent sturdiness. That emerges in several methods. He can hang hard in the pocket and also take a hit. Additionally, Willis shows grit as a sphere service provider when running away the pocket. He is testing to remove outdoors area because of his sturdiness and also sports capability.
Willis has outstanding sports high qualities. The Liberty QB is quickly, has an outstanding short-area ruptured, and also his switch is extraordinary. This enables him to be an enjoyable, electrical, and also reliable dual-threat quarterback. Willis is evasive both in and also out of the pocket, reveals outstanding vision as a jogger, and also is wonderfully imaginative.
Along with his capability as a jogger, Willis comes geared up with a cannon for an arm. He’s revealed that he can obtain the round to all locations of the area. In addition, he places remarkable zip on the round to discharge right into limited home windows. Willis can toss the round from several arm angles and also goes over tossing on the run.
Locations for enhancement
Solid arm, wonderful legs– can not shed, right? Well, not rather. As amusing and also gifted as Willis is, there are some locations for enhancement.
Willis will certainly require to enhance decision-making dramatically if he is to fracture the preliminary of the 2022NFL Draft His tape is cluttered with inexpedient tosses, varying from trying to whiz the round right into too-tight home windows to spheres tossed right into dual protection. Doubtful decision-making is likewise apparent in his control of the pocket. Willis took a lot of unneeded sacks in 2014, while at various other times, he ran away the pocket prior to enabling a prospective passing play to establish totally.
For all his arm toughness, precision is an additional location for enhancement. There were lots of instances of overthrows, underthrows, and also tosses that landed large of the mark. Several of these misses out on got on brief passes with little to no stress on either Willis or his receiver.
Although Willis just tossed 6 interceptions last period, there were round safety problems. He experienced numerous fumbles throughout the period because of failing to safeguard the round effectively on the step. This was a location that enhanced throughout the period. Nonetheless, he will certainly require to remain to establish his running design to guarantee he safeguards the round with uniformity.
Uniformity is an excellent word to theorize Willis’ scouting report. The Liberty QB has the devices to be an outstanding 2022 NFL Draft possibility, however he requires to be a lot more constant in all facets of his video game.
Willis’ Gamer Account
Willis’ roadway to the 2022 NFL Draft has actually been as winding as one of his fascinating acts of escapology out of the pocket. Maturing in Atlanta, the young quarterback played his very early senior high school occupation for Westlake Secondary school. While thrilling on the football area, he likewise revealed dual-threat capability as a multi-sport professional athlete, completing on the baseball ruby.
Dual-threat is clearly selected due to the fact that it is the ideal summation of Willis’ capability on the arena. He was just as experienced with his arm and also his legs at the quarterback setting, making very early rate of interest from Ohio, Sphere State, and also Georgia State. Regardless of his ability, Willis was provided the “athlete” classification by scouting solutions. Additionally, he was just tabbed as the 21st professional athlete in the 2017 recruiting course as a three-star possibility.
Provided the obscurity related to the professional athlete name, Willis participated in a camp at Virginia Technology to exercise as a protective back. Having actually thrilled throughout the exercise, he approved a deal from the Hokies in the summer season of 2016. The assumption being he would certainly align at protective back, or perhaps even at pass receiver. There was a protective course to the NFL, enabling him to adhere to in the footprints of his uncle– James Anderson– that was a third-round choice of the Carolina Panthers in the 2006 NFL Draft.
Spectacular elderly period raises Willis’ recruiting account
A transfer prior to his elderly period changed every little thing. Willis got to Roswell Secondary school for his last senior high school period securely devoted to Virginia Technology. Yet, his impressive efficiencies made him much more interest than he would certainly gotten early in the recruiting procedure. More boosting his online reputation as a dual-threat gamer, Willis masqueraded 2,563 backyards, hurried for 1,033 backyards, and also racked up 37 overall goals.
The young QB led Roswell to the state title video game while he was called the Course 7A AJC Offensive Gamer of the Year. On the other hand, a late deal from Auburn offered Willis a challenging choice to make. Although he would certainly been securely devoted to Virginia Technology, the possibility to be an university quarterback was as well alluring. Willis retracted his dedication to the Hokies and also introduced his choice to authorize with the Tigers.
“I had to do what’s right for me and my family,” he informed Rivals.com. “This is closer for them, and it gives me a chance to play a position that I love. It was important that I got a shot at least because I feel like I can play quarterback at the next level.”
Regardless of heading right into the 2021 university football period as a heated quarterback prospect for the NFL Draft, Willis’ shot to play QB at the university degree would certainly need persistence. Auburn had actually likewise landed very ranked JUCO quarterback Jarrett Stidham, and also Willis’ chances were rare in 2017.
Nonetheless, he did see activity in 7 video games as a real fresher in the SEC. Willis made his launching versus Missouri prior to blinking his distinct ability versus Mississippi State. His very first university football goal began a 67-yard run in a detailed sway the Bulldogs. 3 weeks later on, he protected his very first passing goal as the Tigers obliterated Arkansas.
A comparable story arised for Willis in 2018. In his student period, he saw activity in 8 video games however no considerable breaks. He just included an additional 7 passing efforts and also his hurrying capacity was cut contrasted to the previous period. Regardless of that, he protected an additional hurrying goal in a mid-November competition versus Liberty.
Willis transfers to Liberty, establishes fire to university football with the Fires
That component offered a spin of destiny for both Willis and also the Blazes. With Bo Nix and also Joey Gatewood participated in a fight for the QB1 area at Auburn for 2019, Willis decided to move. Liberty, under brand-new head train Hugh Freeze, remained in the marketplace for a quarterback. It was an excellent suit.
“I love coach Freeze,” Willis excited as he introduced his transfer. “Love his offense, and feel like this is the best place for me to showcase my ability to throw the football.”
Regardless of the drop-down from the SEC to an Independent FBS college, the Liberty routine for the interfered with 2020 period would certainly provide Willis a system to reveal his capability to the globe. The vibrant Liberty QB led the Blazes to their first-ever sway ACC resistance as they defeat Syracuse and also Virginia Technology.
Showing the arm skill he so seriously desired the globe to see, Willis linked the program document with 6 passing goals versus Southern Miss. He made 2 300-plus-yard passing video games while amounting to 2,250 passing backyards and also 20 goals, finishing 64.2% of his passes.
Willis’ fascinating capability to develop have fun with his legs is what established him apart
On the ground, Willis led all quarterbacks with 944 backyards. On the other hand, his 14 hurrying goals benefited 7th in the country. Not seventh-best quarterback, 7th in general, vanquishing prominent running backs.
Willis completed his 2020 period in vogue in the Treatment Dish sway Coastal Carolina. The heavily-fancied Chanticleers were melted by Willis and also the Blazes as the Liberty QB made Treatment Dish MVP honors. He completed the evening (and also the period) with a 220-passing-yard, 137-rushing-yard, and also 4-touchdown efficiency.
His excellent trips and also fascinating play design make Willis an interesting 2022 NFL Draft possibility. The Liberty QB has lots of devices that convert to the following degree, however he still has some locations for enhancement. Is Willis a first-round skill? Not yet. Could he be a first-round option in the 2022 NFL Draft? Definitely.
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Oliver Hodgkinson is an NFL Draft Expert for Pro Football Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @ojhodgkinson.