Mel Kiper Jr. likens Connor Cook to former middle-round quarterbacks
Well, there’s two ways to look at it.
ESPN draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. was asked about Michigan State quarterback Connor Cook on his “First Draft” podcast. The question was whether or not Cook could be a guy that teams could potentially trade up for and snag at the end of the first round.
Kiper responded with a comparison of two guys that started in NFL playoff games this year. Kirk Cousins, a former Michigan State quarterback, and three-time national champion A.J. MacCarron were the names Kiper went with.
Why? Neither elected to play in the Senior Bowl, like Cook, and he felt they slipped in the draft because of it.
“Is Connor Cook much different than those guys?” Kiper said on his NFL draft podcast. “We’re talking about the first round here. With the way he finished with the injury — not at 100 percent — that factors in. I saw him look pretty good when he was at 100 percent.
“But was he even a first-round pick then? That’s what you have to look at. And I didn’t think so. I would say second-round for Cook.”
Kiper does have Cook rated as his No. 4 quarterback — but not in the first round — with Penn State’s Christian Hackenberg right behind him.
Cousins eventually won the starting job in Washington while McCarron is still behind Andy Dalton on the depth chart. But the point that Kiper was making was that Cook might not be a guy worth investing a first-round pick in because there are concerns surrounding a guy he didn’t feel was a first-round talent to begin with.
Cook’s draft stock will be an interesting one to follow given how his three-year run ended. It would be a surprise to see him slip to the fourth round like Cousins did, or to fall all the way to the fifth like McCarron did.
We only have to wait another three months to find out where Cook ends up.