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Jan 22, 2015 04:02 PM EST

Brett Hundley NFL Draft Stock Hurt By Skipping Senior Bowl? Multiple Experts Disagree


Brett Hundley is not a top-tier quarterback prospect in the NFL Draft, but he is widely believed to be the next best thing after Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston.

With Mariota and Winston projected to go first and second overall, Hundley's draft projection is extremely unclear. His stock may have fallen more than it rose over the course of this past season, so was there really going to be any advantage to playing in the Senior Bowl?

In an Insider piece from ESPN's Todd McShay and Kevin Weidl, Hundley's decision to pass on the Senior Bowl was described as a "missed opportunity." While A.J. McCarron skipped the game last year and was drafted in the fifth round, Jimmy Garappolo took the empty spot and was picked in the second round.

UCLA fans would point out that the hand injury Hundley suffered in the regular season finale against Stanford may have been more serious than reported. They would also say that other publications like NFL.com and CBS Sports do not see it like McShay and Weidl do.

But this year's QB draft class is far different from last year's. This year, there are two teams at the top who need a QB and there are two QBs who seem deserving of being picked in those spots (like in 2012 with Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III).

Draft stock is partly what a team needs, if the player fits their scheme and how good that player is. Hundley has started three years at UCLA, stayed mostly healthy all the while and produced good numbers consistently. However, he did not show significant improvement in his final season and he may need to work on his accuracy and his ability to make reads and decisions.

Undeniable strengths Hundley has are his ideal size, outstanding physical ability and a commendable attitude and work ethic. So all he needs is a team willing to wait on him to grasp the speed of the NFL.

That could well be the Philadelphia Eagles, if a report from Walter Football is to be believed. The Eagles may soon realize they do not want to pay the price to acquire the first overall pick to get Mariota.

Then there are the scouts like one who, on the condition of anonymity, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Hundley is "going to be a bust."

In 2012, when Luck and Girffin went first and second, the next QB taken was Brock Osweiler 57th overall. Then in the third round, with the 75th overall pick, the Seahawks took Russell Wilson five picks after the Jaguars took a punter.

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