With a greater demand than ever at the quarterback position, and five signal-callers expected to be gone with the first 10 picks of the draft, attention focuses on which QBs may present value in the later rounds. One passer who is beginning to garner attention late in the 2021 NFL Draft process is Northwestern quarterback Peyton Ramsey. Will he hear his name called in Cleveland?
Peyton Ramsey NFL Draft Player Profile
- Position: Quarterback
- School: Northwestern
- Current Year: Redshirt-Senior
- Height: 6’1″
- Weight: 202 pounds
Tony Pauline’s Peyton Ramsey Scouting Report
Positives: Indiana transfer who was one of the most consistent quarterbacks in the Big Ten the past two years. Patient, displays terrific pocket awareness, and senses pressure. Remains poised under the rush, steps up to avoid defenders, and dumps the ball off to the safe underneath outlet if nothing else is available.
Keeps his eyes downfield rolling outside the pocket. Buys as much time as necessary for receivers, puts touch on passes, and delivers a catchable ball. Tosses the ball away if nothing else is available. Easily gets outside the pocket, keeps his eyes downfield on the move, and shows the ability to pick up yardage with his legs when necessary. Creates yardage when he takes off upfield. Displays a sense of timing on receptions and does not have receivers waiting on the ball.
Negatives: Loses accuracy as well as speed passing on the move. Can be all over the place with throws. Lacks great arm strength and cannot drive deep passes.
Analysis: Ramsey is a bit of a sandlot quarterback who has done nothing but win the past two seasons, effectively leading the offense for two different schools. His timing and sense for playmaking makes Ramsey a good fit as a backup in a timing offense.
Peyton Ramsey Player Profile
Born into a football-orientated family in Cincinnati, Ohio, Peyton and his brothers — Montana and Drew — were all named after NFL quarterbacks. With a high school head coach father, success on the football field came naturally to the young quarterback.
As the signal-caller for his father’s Elder High School team, he was twice named the Greater Catholic League South Player of the Year. Ramsey also led Elder to three playoff appearances. He set multiple school records while throwing for 6,708 yards and 49 touchdowns. Displaying an early ability to impact the game with his legs, he added 32 rushing touchdowns to boot.
Despite his successful high school career, analysts gave Ramsey a three-star rating and ranked him as the 44th overall prospect in the 2016 recruiting class. He received several offers from the MAC, while Cincinnati and a few more AAC teams courted the young signal-caller. However, one program offered him the opportunity to check off a career goal and play in an up-and-coming offense. Having dreamed of playing in the Big Ten conference, Ramsey committed to Indiana early in his recruitment.
Ramsey’s college football career at Indiana
Although he redshirted in 2016, the Indiana quarterback found a way to contribute on offense. Ramsey earned Scout Team Player of the Year honors for his hard work and commitment in practice. The dedication led to an elevated role in 2017, making his debut against Ohio State. Despite a turbulent season, his redshirt-freshman campaign set the foundations for success over the next two years.
Ramsey charged Indiana to 12 wins as he threw for over 5,000 yards and racked up 44 total touchdowns between 2018 and 2019. Before the 2019 season, Indiana hadn’t secured a winning season since 2007. Their last winning campaign before that was back in 1994. Furthermore, Ramsey produced his best performances in the biggest games. His career-high single-game passing yards came against a strong Penn State team. Even in a 2018 defeat to Ohio State, the Indiana quarterback threw 322 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Transferring to play quarterback for Northwestern
At the end of the 2019 season, Ramsey was faced with multiple options. He could have declared for the 2021 NFL Draft or return to Indiana. Yet, having graduated from Indiana, he opted to take the transfer route to Northwestern. The Wildcats were a preferred destination out of high school, and Ramsey took little time to accept their offer.
Northwestern was disappointing in 2019, but with a new QB at the helm, combined with a ferocious defense, the Wildcats became a pleasant surprise in 2020. Ramsey led Northwestern to the Big Ten Championship Game. Although they ultimately fell short, the Wildcats gave Ohio State a run for their money.
In his final game as Northwestern’s quarterback, he orchestrated a dominating win over Auburn in the Citrus Bowl. Ramsey threw for 291 yards and 3 touchdowns, earning MVP honors. Following the conclusion of the season, he declared for the 2021 NFL Draft.
Peyton Ramsey’s best fits in the 2021 NFL Draft
The biggest knock on Ramsey ahead of the 2021 NFL Draft is his deep throw accuracy and ability to drive the ball downfield. Although he impressed in that area at his pro day and demonstrated speed in the 40-yard dash, Ramsey is likely to be a late-round selection who could win a backup job in the NFL.
Having based his game around Russell Wilson growing up, the Seattle Seahawks may be a good fit. The Arizona Cardinals sent their quarterback coach to Northwestern’s Pro Day, which leads me to believe there is interest. Additionally, the San Francisco 49ers, New Orleans Saints, and Los Angeles Rams would provide solid landing spots for his skill set.
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Oliver Hodgkinson is a staff writer for Pro Football Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @ojhodgkinson.