Even before the 2020 season, Wake Forest quarterback Jamie Newman was an NFL Draft enigma. Now, after Newman chose to opt-out and the rest of the quarterback class developed, he finds himself in limbo. Where does Newman fall on the draft board, after a conclusion to his collegiate career that left onlookers wanting to see more?
Jamie Newman NFL Draft Profile
- Position: Quarterback
- School: Wake Forest
- Current Year: Redshirt Senior
- Height: 6’2 7/8″
- Weight: 235 pounds
- Wingspan: 76″
- Arm: 30 1/2″
- Hand: 10″
Tony Pauline’s Jamie Newman Scouting Report
Positives: Nice-sized pocket passer with an undeveloped game. Patient, buys as much time as necessary for receivers and stands strong against the rush. Possesses a compact throwing motion, a live arm, and throws tight spirals with speed. Displays a sense of timing on throws and does not have receivers waiting for the ball to arrive.
Natural-looking off the safety, spreads the ball around and uses all his targets. Remains poised as the pocket collapses around him, shows no sense of worry, and is quick bouncing it to the outside. Loses nothing throwing on the run and easily gets the ball downfield. Puts touch on throws and delivers a catchable ball. Effectively led the Wake Forest offense in 2019.
Negatives: Tends to stare down the primary target and is late moving his eyes from receivers. Holds the ball a little too long and must hasten his decision-making. Struggles with his accuracy as well as pass placement and can be all over the place with throws.
Analysis: Newman possesses the physical skills to play in the NFL but needs a lot of work on the intangibles and details of the quarterback position. He started off hot during the first day of Senior Bowl practices, then he quickly fizzled out and looked like a quarterback who had not played football in more than a year. Newman is a high-upside prospect but needs time and proper coaching to meet his incredible upside.
Jamie Newman Player Profile
Jamie Newman was only a three-star prospect in high school, but his physical potential was always apparent. As a senior, the future Demon Deacons signal-caller was already 6-foot-4 and 237 pounds, and he had a 4.76 40-yard dash and a vertical over 31 inches.
Just as Newman’s talent was always apparent, however, so was his volatility. In his final season at Graham High School, Newman completed barely above 50% of his passes and threw 12 touchdowns to eight interceptions. His inconsistency turned off most of the upper-echelon college football programs, but he still drew interest from Power Five teams.
Heading into 2016, Newman had offers from West Virginia, Vanderbilt, North Carolina State, and Boston College, among others. However, he ultimately passed over proven quarterback development programs at NC State and Boston College to enroll at Wake Forest. There, he envisioned an eventual starting opportunity, but he would have to wait.
Jamie Newman’s tumultuous collegiate career
Newman redshirted his first season with the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, and his second season might as well have been a redshirt, too. As a redshirt freshman, Newman was behind John Wolford and Kendall Hinton on the depth chart. He only threw four total passes, completing two for eight yards and throwing an interception.
In 2018, Wolford left the program, and Newman had a chance to earn the starting job. However, he lost the preseason camp quarterback battle to true freshman passer Sam Hartman. Hartman covered the quarterback position for most of the season, but Newman got his chance late when Hartman suffered a broken leg.
Getting his chance and savoring it
Newman played well in his four-game stint, ending the 2018 campaign with 84 completions on 141 attempts, 1,083 yards, nine touchdowns, and four interceptions. Newman carried the starting job into the 2019 college football season and didn’t look back.
In 2019, Newman broke out, completing 220 of 361 attempts for 2,868 yards, 26 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. He also added 574 yards and six touchdowns on the ground. Newman’s 2019 season put him on the map, and it actually cultivated a discussion around him as a 2020 NFL Draft prospect.
Yet, Newman eyed a chance to further develop his traits, and so he stayed in college and announced his intentions to transfer from Wake Forest.
The Jamie Newman-Georgia saga
Shortly after announcing his availability as a graduate transfer, Jamie Newman chose the Georgia Bulldogs as his transfer destination. The Bulldogs were an attractive option to further Newman’s development. The Georgia offense had a void at quarterback after the departure of Jake Fromm, and offensive coordinator Todd Monken was coming in to call plays.
Newman again had competition at quarterback, however. Former USC quarterback J.T. Daniels also transferred to Georgia, and the NCAA granted him immediate eligibility in July. Newman was at first viewed as the favorite. But when the SEC season got pushed back to September 26, Newman instead announced his decision to opt out and declare for the 2021 NFL Draft on September 2, citing the uncertainty of the 2020 season.
A summer rife with anticipation wound up leading to nothing, and Newman went to the draft, providing scouts with more questions than answers.
Analyzing Jamie Newman’s 2021 NFL Draft Profile
The flashes are bright with Jamie Newman, and it starts with his physical traits. At 6-foot-4, 230 pounds, Newman is one of the most physically imposing quarterbacks in this class. He’s built like a linebacker, and he moves well for his size. He’s a weapon as a runner, who combines good speed and agility with infectious toughness and resilience.
As a passer, Newman is similarly flashy. He has a nice, compact throwing motion, and he’s able to generate velocity with relative ease. This velocity can enable Newman to hit incredibly tight windows. It can also enable him to hit receivers in stride downfield. The flashes are bright, but unfortunately, they come less often than one would hope.
The issues with Wake Forest quarterback Jamie Newman
When Newman has time to throw, he has a decent feel for mechanical congruence. However, his mechanics start to collapse under pressure, and his mental process mirrors this inconsistency.
Newman’s eyes and progressions are a big issue. On rare occasions, the Wake Forest quarterback shows the ability to scan the field and process route development. But far too often, Newman locks onto his first target, keys in defenders with his stagnant eyes, and pulls the trigger anyway. Pre-play or mid-play, he doesn’t adapt often enough, and this makes him predictable and volatile.
Newman needs a great deal of improvement as a processor. Although growth is possible there, it’s not easy to develop at the NFL level, where things move even faster. Newman already clocks in a bit late on a lot of in-breaking throws, thus hindering receiver separation. And when he’s only “area accurate” and not a pinpoint precision passer, that only makes matters worse.
Newman has a lot of upside. He’s a great athlete with a great arm. He’s also known as an energetic leader who can rally his teammates and lead an offense.
Yet, until Newman finds a way to sharpen his mental game, improve his decision-making against pressure, and make his eyes a weapon rather than a weakness, he’ll only be a developmental passer, with upside that might end up being unattainable.
Jamie Newman’s best fits in the 2021 NFL Draft
Before the 2020 college football season, Jamie Newman was an enigma. Most people thought Newman would at least get one more year in college to refine his traits. Now, there is general agreement that Newman needed that extra year and that he’s nowhere near ready to start in the NFL.
Before his decision to opt-out, most mock drafts had Jamie Newman as a Day 2 NFL Draft pick. Some even boldly predicted him to sneak into Round 1. Without a crucial season of development, Newman more closely resembles an early-to-mid Day 3 pick. Newman can improve his draft stock at the NFL Combine and the Senior Bowl, but for now, there’s far too much uncertainty in his projection to warrant an early selection.
What are the best teams for Newman?
The silver lining with Newman rests in his flashes. His physical talent gives him a high ceiling, and he doesn’t have an absolute inability to go through progressions. He’s shown it in spurts, so NFL teams may see that as something they can work with.
Still, even if Newman has potential starter traits, he shouldn’t start early in his career. If Newman can go to a team with an established veteran and learn for a couple of years, that would be the most beneficial solution.
In 2021, teams that fit Newman’s needs could include the Pittsburgh Steelers, Indianapolis Colts, Minnesota Vikings, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The key for the Wake Forest quarterback is mentorship. If he can enter a situation that allows him to grow and develop, then his career trajectory could rediscover the upward trend it lost in 2020.
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