Continuing our Prospect Preview series, we highlight Washington State quarterback Luke Falk
For starters, the Cougars are no longer Pac-12 also-ran’s: Mike Leach has turned this program around and has them headed in the right direction. Washington State was the number one rated passing offense in the country last year as Falk was absolutely brilliant, completing 69.4 percent of his 644 attempts for 4,561 yards and 38 touchdowns against a mere eight interceptions. He topped 300+ yards in a game nine times including two 500+ yarders; he also tossed five touchdowns on three separate occasions. Falk returns for his junior season, and looks to guide the Cougars to their first 10 win season since 2003 after going 9-4 in 2015.
Both videos are prime examples of Falk’s pocket maneuverability and his ability to go through his progressions, the latter of which is more impressive due to his system that often reads one side of the field. He slides and escapes pressure within the pocket before resetting his feet and extending the play with his legs and finding his check down respectively.
Mechanics are the most important part of a quarterback’s evaluation: they can mask or expose nearly every deficiency passers have. For me, footwork is also included in that and Falk shows how good his is. Falk is taking five step drops from the gun, and both are completed quickly with good depth before opening his hips and pointing his shoulder to his target. He makes the right read in the first video and uncorks a pretty deep ball with good touch that keeps his receiver on his route; below, he delivers an opposite-field strike that is out of his hand as the receiver breaks toward the sideline on his out route.
The Air Raid offense has proven to produce nary a successful quarterback in the NFL since Houston popularized it with Andre Ware in the late ’80s. Falk has a strong chance of bucking that unfortunate trend, and may aid his cause further should he choose to come out in 2018.