Carson Strong is a big-armed quarterback coming out of the Mountain West who has recently produced several NFL quarterbacks (Josh Allen, Jordan Love, etc). His deep ball accuracy flashes incredible at times, but his consistency hitting it has not been there. While some of his mechanics are sloppy, Strong’s upside as a project player at the next level is legitimate. If he can learn to control his arm talent better, he can be a suitable starter at the next level.
Year: Redshirt Sophomore (4th year)
High School: Wood (Vacaville, CA)
HS Rating: 3 star (0.8043)
Phil Steele: PS#129
Carson Strong Compete Scouting Report
Very strong arm strength. Pushes the ball well down the field. Has the ability to throw off-platform pretty well. Doesn’t drive the ball with a lot of velocity when throwing far out. Throws with excellent touch on the deep ball. Does a good job throwing with velocity when he needs to. Takes steam off of the ball when it doesn’t need to, especially underneath. Release is a little bit wonky. Looks awkward coming out of his hands and going through the motion. Could speed up the time with better footwork. Did show a better release in 2021, more compact and faster out of his hands.
Box accurate. Throw some really nice balls, but oftentimes when going downfield the ball is behind the receiver. Tends to underthrow the fade. Tends to underthrow footballs in general. Deep ball accuracy flashes outstanding. Can make crazy good throws down the field. Eyes come off the play downfield when under pressure. Not sure how well he reads through progressions, the bit I’ve seen he’s staring down receivers. Does have the ability to work through some full field progressions. Really happy with some of the stuff I’ve seen. Flashes the ability to hit the deep ball and throw with touch into the soft spots of zone. Struggles with placement in the red zone.
Doesn’t display strong pocket awareness to me. Seems to struggle to feel it out well. Wants to stay in the pocket but doesn’t often move to good spots. Needs to learn to get the ball out sooner. Needs to get that internal clock running in his head. Flashes the ability to move well in the pocket. Not consistent. Takes some unnecessary sacks at times that could have been avoided with better pocket presence. Moves into sacks at times trying to keep the play alive. Stands in under pressure and delivers the throw even while under duress.
Consistent footwork, but could be better. There’s a lot of time where he’s moving and not ready to throw. Will become stone-footed at times and stop chopping his feet. Doesn’t throw well off his back foot, likes to go to that rather than a hitch step. Strong’s footwork oftentimes looks heavy and clunky. Sped up and became more consistent in 2021. Lower body was much more in tune with his upper body unless under pressure in 2021.
Fairly mobile. Moves well around defenders outside of the pocket and buys himself a lot of time. Really needs to be better with the football. Doesn’t have the “eyes-in-back-of-head” feel for the play. Not very effective as a runner downfield. Doesn’t often try to run.
Shows flashes of some natural improvability to try and keep plays alive. You don’t see a lot of improvability from Strong overall, who prefers to keep things in structure. I don’t know if that’s an issue with his receivers not working back to him, or if that’s a Strong issue. Has the ability to extend the play despite not being the most athletic or mobile quarterback in this upcoming class. Can make big plays while extending with his big arm and ability to throw off platform. Does consistently throw well off platform while keeping the play alive.
Too hesitant at times. Very frustrating. Does show good eyes, moving defenders with his vision. Appears to see the field decently well. Tends to make pre-snap reads and play off of them despite the picture of the play changing. Despite reports of his lack of football intelligence, Strong displayed good intelligence to me. Displays the ability to make good pre-snap reads. Tends to pre-snap determine a lot, which is an issue. Very loose personality, chill and goofy. Should be a good presence in a locker room. Handles himself well with the media. No known off-field issues.
Struggled with a nagging injury throughout 2021 that Strong told me limited him, saying that “people didn’t see the real Carson Strong in 2021.” Outside of 2021, Strong has stayed healthy throughout his career. Carson Strong does present considerable upside as a prospect at the next level. He has great arm talent and flashes accuracy at times, but nothing is consistent and he has a lot of work to do in learning how to throw to receivers effectively underneath and in the intermediate game. Most of this is caused by Strong’s lack of composure under pressure.