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New England Patriots

New England Patriots

New England Patriots

Washington quarterback Michael Penix will be one of the most polarizing players in this year’s draft. He’s flashed immense upside as a passer but his performance in the National Championship against Michigan was not a great final showing, and he’ll have to overcome questions about his durability and age as well.

Michael Penix scouting report

Sep 9, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; Washington Huskies quarterback Michael Penix Jr. (9) looks to pass against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane during the first quarter at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium. Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Sep 9, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; Washington Huskies quarterback Michael Penix Jr. (9) looks to pass against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane during the first quarter at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium. Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Background

College: Washington

Age: 23

Height: 6’3

Weight: 213

Awards: Maxwell Award (2023), AP Comeback Player of the Year (2022), All-American First Team (2023), All-Pac-12 Second Team (2022, 2023), All-Big Ten Second Team (2020)

A three-star recruit out of Tampa Bay Technical High School, Penix was a three-star recruit in the Class of 2018, in which he was the 66th-ranked quarterback. He began his career at Indiana, where he brought the program rare success when he was on the field. Penix went 12-5 as a starter for the Hoosiers but never played more than six games in a season his whole time there – he tore his right ACL in 2018 and 2020, and was limited injuries in his left (throwing) shoulder in 2019 and 2021.

Penix didn’t play his first full season until 2022 when he transferred to Washington. He threw for 4,641 yards that season as the Huskies went 11-2. He took another step in 2023, setting career-high numbers almost across the board as he led Washington to a Pac-12 title and the College Football Playoff. In the playoff he had an outstanding performance against Texas in the semifinal, but struggled against Michigan in the National Championship. While both performances brought strong reactions, the reality is who he is as a player is somewhere between those two games – as film from his full 2023 season indicates.

For more player breakdowns, scouting reports, and all things 2024 NFL Draft, check out the 98.5 The Sports Hub Draft Hub page

  • Stats

    Passing
    Year School Conf Class G(S) Cmp Att Pct Yds Y/A TD Int Rate
    2018 Indiana Big Ten FR 3(0) 21 34 61.8 219 6.4 1 0 125.6
    2019 Indiana Big Ten rFR 6(6) 110 160 68.8 1394 8.7 10 4 157.6
    2020 Indiana Big Ten rSO 6(6) 124 220 56.4 1645 7.5 14 4 136.5
    2021 Indiana Big Ten rJR 5(5) 87 162 53.7 939 5.8 4 7 101.9
    2022 Washington Pac-12 rJR 13(13) 362 554 65.3 4641 8.4 31 8 151.3
    2023 Washington Pac-12 rSR 15(15) 363 555 65.4 4903 8.8 36 11 157.1
    Career 48(45) 1067 1685 63.3 13741 8.2 96 34 146.6
    Indiana 20(17) 342 576 59.4 4197 7.3 29 15 132.0
    Washington 28 (28) 725 1109 65.4 9544 8.6 67 19 154.2
    Rushing
    Year School Conf Class G Att Yds Avg TD
    2018 Indiana Big Ten FR 3 7 45 6.4 0
    2019 Indiana Big Ten rFR 7 22 119 5.4 2
    2020 Indiana Big Ten rSO 6 18 25 1.4 2
    2021 Indiana Big Ten rJR 5 17 -24 -1.4 2
    2022 Washington Pac-12 rJR 13 35 92 2.6 4
    2023 Washington Pac-12 rSR 15 35 8 0.2 3
    Career 48 134 265 2.0 13
    Indiana 20 64 165 2.6 6
    Washington 28 70 100 1.4 7
  • Strengths

    — Pure arm talent is among the best in this class – the ball explodes out of his hand

    — Elite downfield thrower

    — Sees the field well pre- and post-snap

    — Tremendous understanding of where to place the ball on throws, can throw receivers open

    — Moves well in the pocket

    — Leadership and toughness traits you want in a franchise leader

  • Weaknesses

    — Effectiveness drops off against pressure more than the average quarterback

    — Unconventional mechanics

    — Not a quarterback a team will design runs for

    — Injury history will be a red flag for some teams – medical testing at the NFL Combine will be big for him

    — Older prospect (turns 24 in May)

  • Video breakdown

  • Player comparisons

    Ceiling: Philip Rivers

    Middle: Geno Smith

    Floor: Carson Wentz

  • Bottom line

    Penix stacks up against any quarterback in this class as a pure passer. But concerns about his injury history and a lack of ceiling due to his age will push him down the board. The question is, how much?

  • Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at [email protected].

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