The 2023 Reese’s Senior Bowl has come and gone, and as the dust continues, the final quarterback picture has taken shape. The final Senior Bowl QB Rankings saw one signal-caller rise well above the rest.
Final 2023 Senior Bowl QB Rankings
1) Jake Haener, Fresno State
Impressing at seemingly every turn, Fresno State’s Jake Haener had the most impressive body of work throughout the week. Capitalizing on a solid three days of practice, Haener led the National Team to a victory over the American Team during the Senior Bowl to close the week.
Haener had the Senior Bowl’s most lively arm, demonstrating strength from multiple platforms and the wherewithal of when to use it. The simulated practices didn’t offer much for quarterbacks in the way of situational football, but Haener seemed to also possess the best quick-learning skills of the playbook installation.
Haener led the game’s opening possession and looked great in the process. He finished 12 of 19 for 139 yards and a touchdown.
When it came to his actual on-field practice performance, Haener’s arm strength and talent popped. He had the most consistent week and lengthened the gap between him and the rest of the quarterbacks in the middle tier of the 2023 NFL Draft.
2) Jaren Hall, BYU
Though he didn’t participate in the final game, Jaren Hall had a great week of practice. He led the quarterbacks on Day 1 of the practice circuit and kept pace with Haener for the most part.
Hall’s reason for not participating in the actual game likely stems from his absence from the final two games for BYU and the desire to avoid contact, but that is still speculation.
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Hall has great arm strength and, despite being one of the most athletic players on the roster, did a great job of going through his progressions and looking to be a pass-first quarterback as opposed to jumping out of the pocket and scrambling.
He had the best pass of the practice circuit when he dropped a deep corner route in the back of the end zone for a would-be touchdown during practice, flashing his elite-level accuracy.
3) Max Duggan, TCU
Lifting himself from the depths of the relative unknown in draft circles, Max Duggan did enough to impress those in attendance in Mobile. Duggan led his group on every possession during the game and clearly was a leader during practice.
His arm strength is certainly a concern at the next level, as he lacks the ability to properly drive balls through tight windows. But his accuracy and decision-making were on display at the Senior Bowl.
Duggan’s intermediate passing was the best in the class. His out-breaking throws to the far hash during the third day of team drills left many in awe.
He’s a long shot to be more than a Day 3 pick, but Duggan showed he can carve out a role for himself in the NFL.
4) Tyson Bagent, Shepherd
You don’t throw the most touchdowns in college football history and not impress while at the Senior Bowl. Tyson Bagent had his moments in Mobile, flourishing during wide-open passing drills.
The arm strength didn’t pop off the screen, nor did his decision-making, as he adjusted to the uptick in speed, but Bagent’s accuracy to the short and intermediate levels was evident.
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His off-script ability was also apparent as he broke contain and made several highlight-reel balls on the run during practices. How quickly will he adjust to the speed of the NFL is the ultimate question, and will his decision-making ever catch up with his accuracy when he’s on his game is a close second.
For Bagent, however, his ceiling is a late-round pick, and he’s still got a long way to go to make an NFL roster from there.
5) Clayton Tune, Houston
There’s still a lot to like about Clayton Tune‘s game, but he was hardly able to show much of that in Mobile. A gritty leader of a football program, Tune lacked poise at times at the Senior Bowl and seemed to play second fiddle to his fellow quarterbacks in the huddle.
One thing that is certainly without denying for Tune is his arm strength, though. He flashed that on multiple passes during practice, driving opposite-hash throws with ease and directing balls into tight windows.
Tune didn’t quite have the best week, but he didn’t show anything negative compared to his season’s worth of work from Houston.
6) Malik Cunningham, Louisville
There were some moments to like from Malik Cunningham, especially in the game. During the 2023 Senior Bowl, Cunningham had one of the best throws, nearly falling away to his weak side and dropping an accurate pass at the pylon just over an out-stretched defender’s arms.
The unfortunate thing about his brilliant throw was the fact that it came amid other areas of concern. Cunningham too frequently fled a clean pocket both during the game and at practice, something that worked for him at Louisville but will hardly work in the NFL.
His decision-making was slow at times, and he struggled to get the ball out on time at others. When pressured, Cunningham showcased his athletic ability to evade tacklers but rarely kept his eyes downfield long enough to come close to an attempt.
Making matters even worse was the fact that Cunningham came up lame following a pick-six interception he threw in the game. Cunningham dove for a tackle attempt and nearly kept his feet through the attempt before ultimately falling on his throwing shoulder and having to be helped to the locker room.
The severity of his injury is not immediately known, and unfortunately, Cunningham will have his work cut out for him to hear his name called in April now.
Not Ranked: Hendon Hooker, Tennessee
Though not appearing in any live game or practice action, Tennessee QB Hendon Hooker was in Mobile for the Senior Bowl. Hooker took part in interviews and was notably talkative during passing drills both during practices and in the game.
It is unknown how well he interviewed, but seeing him coaching up the other quarterbacks after pass attempts and on-field work showcased what kind of leadership skills Hooker possesses.
Those in attendance and watching back certainly were impressed with Hooker’s presence on the field.