Nevada QB Carson Strong not declaring for 2021 NFL Draft

Nevada Wolf Pack QB Carson Strong is one of the most intriguing prospects of the 2021 NFL Draft — except that he won’t be in it.

Will Nevada QC Carson Strong declare for the 2021 NFL Draft?

Carson Strong told me on Tuesday afternoon that he would stay for the upcoming season with the Wolf Pack and that he plans to hit this offseason hard with an emphasis on perfecting his already impressive accuracy. The decision comes down more to the fact that he wants to reach his personal peak rather than a notion that he’s not ready.

“We have such a good team coming back next year,” he said. “We’ve got all of our starters on offense and almost all of our starters on defense. I do think I could leave this year, I’m just not quite ready to go. I just have a lot left that I want to accomplish.”

He says he’s spent as much time as he possibly could working his receivers last year, something he believes contributed to his nearly seven percent rise in accuracy.

“I was completing about 70 percent of my passes, but I know I can do even better than that,” he said. “I’m still missing a handful of throws every game. I could see myself going out next year and throwing in the high 70’s percentage range, maybe closer to 80 percent. That’s going to be my goal, of course, in addition to getting physically stronger and faster, just getting my body ready.”

Where could Carson Strong have ended up?

Carson Strong has mixed projections as to when he would be drafted, taking into account a host of projections. Realistically, due to the competition in this draft, he could be considered a Tier Two quarterback if he were to have declared this year.

“The redshirt sophomore is a gunslinger who makes good decisions with the ball,” Tony Pauline wrote in late October. “Strong did a much better job of not locking onto receivers as the game progressed, and he’s shown a lot of progress since last season. He has incredible upside and the physical gifts to lead a franchise at the next level.”

The 6-foot-4, 215-pounder completed just over 70% of his passes this year for 2,858 yards (8.1-yard average) with 38 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

“It’s kind of crazy because I didn’t know I even had any type of NFL attention or anything like that coming into the season,” he said. “Just having the season that I did, I kind of got some people’s radar. But I’m still planning on coming back to school next year, getting my degree, chasing this Mountain West conference championship.”

How Matt Mumme has impacted the Nevada QB’s game

He says he has been given a lot of freedom within the Air Raid offense the Wolf Pack runs under offensive coordinator Matt Mumme — something he believes is a positive thing as he begins to take a look at the next level of his career.

Carson Strong’s ability to have a sense of independence within the system comes down to a mutual trust between him and his coaches.

“My coaches have a lot of faith in me, and a lot of times they’ll give me a run play and a pass play. I’ll go up to the line of scrimmage and I see what the defense is trying to do I get us into the right play. They give me a lot of freedom to audible play.”

What makes the Nevada QB an interesting draft prospect

Carson Strong believes that he has a strong advantage mentally, and it’s not hard to tell that he has a high football IQ. But there are still some things to brush up on in some specific areas, according to him.

“I think that’s a big part of my game,” he said. “I’m still learning, I’m still improving, there’s still a lot more that I can do. I can learn more about the run game, I can learn more about pass protection, different types of blitzes.”

This season was particularly rewarding for Strong and the Wolf Pack, who were able to cap off a winning season with a 7-2 overall record and a 38-27 win in the Idaho Potato Bowl.

The victory was particularly satisfying for the team because they had found themselves on the losing end — the other side of the french fry bath — in the same bowl game a year ago when they fell 30-21 to the Ohio Bobcats.

Strong recorded one the strongest performances in his career during that game, completing 22-of-28 passing attempts for 271 yards with five touchdowns and no interceptions — a perfect illustration of what a quarterback in the Air Raid is supposed to look like.

“We started 2020 off playing the Potato Bowl last season, we played on January 3rd,” the Nevada QB said. “To come full circle the next season and play in the same bowl game and redeem ourselves just felt good.”

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