If there is the possibility that a prospect can be overhyped in May for the NFL Draft over 11 months later, Willis has found himself in that position. Certainly, it’s undeniable that Willis has big-level traits. The transfer from Auburn has a huge arm and is an electric athlete. This combination of traits allows Willis to be solid as both a runner downfield and an improviser as a passer. Willis is capable of throwing off-platform with velocity and from many different arm angles. He’s not a finished product, but certainly has the tools to be an effective starter if given the time to develop.
Year: Redshirt Junior (5th year)
High School: Roswell (Atlanta, GA)
HS Rating: 3 star (0.8857)
Phil Steele: PS#102
No work out numbers.
Malik Willis Complete Scouting Report
Fairly accurate. Box accurate quarterback. Struggles to throw the far out accurately, needs to put the ball in front of the receiver. I think the deep out is going to be a serious issue for Willis. Really is all over the place trying to throw that. I’d be pretty concerned with his consistency. Flashes the ability to throw accurately on big throws. Has really improved tremendously with the consistency of his deep ball. Will try to force throws into coverage at times. Placement is very boxy. Needs to work on reading coverages to be more consistent. Still not as good with his placement of the deep ball, but there’s been marked improvement from 2020. Deep ball placement is still very spotty.
Works surprisingly well from the pocket. Doesn’t adjust as well as you’d like to see but has good upper body strength to absorb contact as he throws without loosing the accuracy and velocity. Looks like he really studies opposing defenses blitz packages because he reacts very well to them. Works well through the pocket. Struggled tremendously because of the elite level of talent against Ole Miss against his much lesser talented team and wasn’t able to trust them.
Footwork could use some work, is raw and inconsistent. Shrugs under pressure and steps away from the throw. Has improved his feet over the draft cycle. Has very quick feet, so the upside is there. Slow dropping from under center, still trying to get comfortable with that situation. Excellent athlete outside of the pocket. Makes defenders miss routinely and gets to space. Isn’t always looking to run. Throw first athlete. Solid athlete with some real ability as a runner.
Elite downfield ability, would be top five in the NFL immediately upon entry. Still looks ridiculously quick against the Senior Bowl competition. Strong runner, can break arm tackles. Led the FBS in forced missed tackles. Very good improviser to keep the play alive. Works well against blitzes. Moves well and see’s his receivers well. Offers serious dual-threat ability and can still stretch the field with his arm. Has the athleticism to move the ball outside of the pocket, but tries to force big plays happen sometimes.
Works through his progressions quickly and effectively. Mostly a two-read system but showed some more advanced reads. Teams were reportedly very impressed with his ability to retain knowledge both at the Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine. Pre-snap work could use some work. Certainly has the mental capacity for it. Incredible personality. Very drawing person – grabs the attention of the room as soon as he walks in. No known off-field red flags. Will be an inspirational leader in a locker room.
Has stayed healthy consistently throughout his career. No real injuries outside of nicks and bruises. The upside that Malik Willis presents is very real and threatening to an NFL team. Yes, he has some passing mechanics to work through. I thought that he had improved a lot of it over the draft cycle, especially with his footwork. I’m willing to bet on a guy who can come in with the work ethic that Willis has and improve steadily one day at a time. I think his upside is huge and I’m willing to see it through.