Heisman Trophy Winner Jayden Daniels Is A Sure-Fire First-Round Pick and Best QB In the Draft

From now until the 2024 NFL draft in April, prospects are picked apart piece by piece, especially quarterbacks.

As of now, the top two signal-callers on the board are 2022 Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams (USC) and Drake Maye (UNC).

Scouts believe these two are franchise-changing quarterbacks and you can’t go wrong with either.

While that may be true or not, there’s another quarterback whose rise to the projected first round draft board should have the attention of GMs all around the league.

Jayden Daniels Has Most Upside

Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Jayden Daniels, who came into the season as a projected second-to-third round selection, has played his way into the first-round.

In fact, he was so good this past season that some pundits believe his rise could be similar to that of former LSU Tigers quarterback and 2019 Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow. 

Maybe, not No. 1 overall, but ESPN NFL draft analyst Matt Miller has Daniels going to the Giants at No. 4 overall in Tuesday’s mock draft. The order was generated via standings projections via ESPN’s Football Power Index.

Other NFL Insider Say Daniels Is First-Rounder

“But did he play himself into the first round? Yes,” said Fox Sports NFL reporter Jay Glazer this week.

“Where in the first round, I don’t know yet. Quarterbacks — once teams do get to pick them apart — they start to slide up more than down.”

“There’s a lot to look at and love with Daniels, so I think you start to looking at it, yeah, I think you’re looking at top 10, top 15,” Glazer added.

That’s very plausible for Daniels, who showed marked improvement in areas that many scouts questioned after last season.


Daniels Showed Incredible Improvement In 2023

After transferring to LSU from Arizona State prior to the 2022 season, Daniels hit the road running under Tigers head coach Brian Kelly, who’s known for his offensive pedigree.

Daniels’ work ethic is the first thing that stands out. How hard he works at LSU, and in the offseason when he’s back at home in Southern California.

There Daniels works with renowned QB coach and guru Taylor Kelly. The two have a strong bond, and it’s paid off for Daniels on the field. 

Daniels continued to develop a consistent stroke for releasing the football. That was followed by footwork that married his throwing motion. Daniels, a perfectionist, took ownership of his flaws and attacked them full throttle.

He’s also continued to work on the off schedule throws that QBs need to be able to make in today’s game. The footwork adjustments also helped with accuracy and being more comfortable making tight window throws. 

It all seemed to come together in 2023 as Daniels went out and had 3,800 yards passing, 40 touchdowns and just four interceptions.

Displaying his dual-threat ability, Daniels also rushed for 1,134 yards and ten more touchdowns. 

For his efforts he took home the Heisman Trophy, Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, Davey O’Brien Award, Walter Camp Award, AP College Football Player of the Year and many other accolades. 

Daniels led all of FBS in total yards, total touchdowns, QBR and most 20-plus yard plays. Now, an NFL team is going to get their franchise QB, one many doubted had what it takes to make it in the NFL.

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