Shea Patterson has yet to throw a pass for Michigan in a competitive game, but CBS' Chris Trapasso believes the junior has the goods to possibly rise to among the top NFL draft prospects in 2019.
The website's NFL Draft writer selects the QB as one of the underclassmen to keep an eye on this college season and who could impress NFL scouts enough to be in the conversation for the top of next year's draft.
His list does not include underclassmen like Michigan defensive lineman Rashan Gary, who along with Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa and Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver, are expected to go high in the 2019 NFL Draft. Trapasso burrowed a bit deeper in putting together his watch list.
Trapasso notes that six of the top 10 selections in this year's draft were underclassmen. In 2017, the number was seven.
About Patterson, Trapasso writes, "At 6-feet-2 and a little over 200 pounds, Patterson isn't the biggest signal-caller in the Big Ten, but there are some Manzielian qualities to his game on the collegiate level. He's a crafty improviser and is difficult to bring to the turf behind the line.
"Despite his lack of traditional NFL quarterback size, he possesses a strong arm and has good but not great accuracy. Now 21 years old, Patterson will receive the sage quarterback tutelage of Jim Harbaugh, who's fallen on some hard times in Ann Arbor ironically due to average-to-abysmal quarterback play. Harbaugh needs Patterson and Patterson needs Harbaugh. After one, high-profile season on a loaded Michigan club that gets to, say, the College Football Playoff, it wouldn't be shocking if Patterson left for the NFL."