Vernon Adams has gone criminally underrated throughout the draft process despite making some of the best throws of the season. Many questioned if Adams could handle the transition from the FCS, but he proved that he could drop dimes against FBS teams as well as anyone.
*Throws are in no particular order*
This play is a testament to Adams’ mechanics. After having to move from his spot because nothing seemed to be open, Adams rolls to his left. Though, instead of just sprinting out, Adams stays conscious of his body’s positioning and makes sure he is ready to make a throw at any time. Eventually, the throw comes open and Adams squares his shoulders to deliver a 25 yard strike to put the Ducks ahead.
Notice how Adams had his eyes up throughout the entire process, too. Even when he is moving, he is focused on finding an open receiver down the field. As soon as he sees an opportunity, he takes a couple of steps to reset himself for the throw. Very few passers go through this process as effortlessly as Adams does, let alone complete the throw.
Once again, Adams impresses with his nuance. Unlike the last play, this rollout is designed. Adams still keeps his eyes up just as well and, again, resets very quickly once he realizes his receiver is open. For Adams to have reset so comfortably in such a quick motion is rare to see. Very few passers, such as Russell Wilson, are capable of doing this consistently, but Adams can. Of course, as well as he sets up, Adams still needs to make a killer throw. 25-plus yards down the field between three defenders, Adams still rifles in a stunning throw for one of his six (!) touchdowns against USC.
If you haven’t caught on by now, Adams has a habit of making sure his upper body is ready to make a throw at any time. Much like the first play, Adams is forced out of the pocket to his left. Even with two rushers forcing him to move off his spot, Adams never loses sight of his man down the field. Rather, he takes a few steps to his left, holds the ball until he knows he can complete the throw and then lets it rip. He has the upper body control and strength to complete the pass without resetting and stepping into the throw like most analysts want to see on every play. Despite getting off the throw in a seemingly reckless fashion, he drops the pass over multiple defenders and away from another, placing the ball in a spot where only his receiver has a legitimate shot at it.
This play is just wild. One can analyze each part of the play and go through the process of how this happened, but there is no way to truly give this play the justice it deserves. Simply, Adams managed a broken pocket on 3rd-and-10 to make a throw while a defender drags him to the ground. This play is a sack 99% of the time for any quarterback, yet Adams has the poise and ability to wiggle his way into a good enough spot to get this throw off for a first down.
Many seem to think Adams can’t hang in the pocket and deliver throws with bodies around him. Well, this play was a shining display of his ability to do just that. The interior of the pocket is crumbling, but Adams wants to make this throw regardless. He stands strong despite the closing defender and places the ball right in his receiver’s hands, allowing him to keep his stride and keep his distance from the defensive back. This throw is on 3rd-and-4, no less. All sorts of pressure were on Adams’ shoulder and he delivered a beautiful throw to open up the scoring and give Oregon an early lead.