NFL Combine results: Rankings, grades for all quarterbacks, led by aces C.J. Stroud & Anthony Richardson

With the exception of Alabama’s Bryce Young, the No. 1 consensus quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft, the top QB options in the class all worked to some extent Saturday afternoon in the NFL Combine.

And while Ohio State’s CJ Stroud, Florida’s Anthony Richardson and Kentucky’s Will Levis fought over who’s closest to Young on the board, later players like Georgia’s Stetson Bennett, TCU’s Max Duggan and BYU’s Jaren Hall also tried to make a statement.

MORE: Live updates, highlights of NFL Combine workouts

Also among these groups was Hendon Hooker of Tennessee. He still hasn’t fully recovered from the cruciate ligament rupture he suffered last November.

A total of 13 QBs completed the passing drills and a few also tried to impress in the agility drills. The Sporting News ranks and ranks them all:

NFL Combine Results: Rankings, Scores of QB Performances

1. CJ Stroud, Ohio State (6-3, 214 lbs)

Class: A

Stroud was smooth as expected and his accuracy was on point. He supported the big talk about his ball placement. He proved why he was a productive and efficient passer in Columbus. Stroud doesn’t get enough credit for creating from motion in the passing game. His experience and brilliance in a favorable system under Ryan Day was on full display. He did nothing to slip from his status as second to Young, and he was still able to push Young to the end of the draft process.

MORE: Bryce Young vs. CJ Stroud Stats: Which QB Will Disembark First in Draft ’23?

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2. Anthony Richardson, Florida (6-4, 244 pounds)

Class: A

If the NFL Combine really was the “Underwear Olympiad,” Richardson would have been a gold medalist among the QBs at the top of the podium. He easily won the athletic triathlon with a 40-yard dash (4.43 seconds), vertical jump (40 1/2 inches) and long jump (10 feet, 9 inches).

When throwing, Richardson showed a different kind of advantage with his big arm. Launch rockets with ease. The potential is there for a player with limited experience. While Young and Stroud built a high floor for NFL glory, Richardson is building a higher ceiling.

MORE: Why Richardson’s size-speed combo has drawn comparisons to Cam Newton, Dak Prescott

3. Will Levis, Kentucky (6-4, 229 pounds)

Grade: A-

Levis promised he would show his “gun,” and sure enough, the ball exploded out of his hand during downfield passing practice. He also had extra momentum at shorter ranges and seemed to use levitation to drop deeper shots with nice trajectories. Levis also showed he could move to make throws from the pocket. He did his best to urge Stroud.

4. Aidan O’Connell, Purdue (6-3, 213 pounds)

Grade: B+

O’Connell proved he’s a versatile pocket passer with the ideal frame. While training near his college home, he made most shots well and showed a variety of touches. He was more impressive than expected with his deep throws. He made a case to be taken to Hooker on Day 2.

5. Dorian Thompson-Robinson, UCLA (6-2, 203 pounds)

Grade B

Thompson-Robinson snatched the ball in the speed drill (62 mph) and his passes while throwing the various routes were great. He also ran very well behind Richardson. DTR has proven he is a good all-around athlete with pop that comes with his intangibles.

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6. Stetson Bennett, Georgia (5-11, 192 pounds)

grade B-

Bennett has two things against him – his age (25) and lack of ideal height and weight. But he’s athletic for his compact build, and while he continued to be inconsistent with passing, he showed he could hurl the deep ball NFL-style better than most. He has the feel of a day 3 backup in the shape of Brock Purdy.

MORE: Why time 40 could help ease Stetson Bennett’s concerns about height, weight and age

7. Jalen Hall, BYU (6-0, 207 pounds)

grade B-

Hall struggled to push the ball down, to the point where his deep arm was disappointing, more inside than out. He moved well and showed good accuracy on short-to-intermediate courses, but he missed an opportunity to improve his draft stock after a solid Senior Bowl week.

8. Malik Cunningham, Louisville (6-0, 192 pounds)

grade B-

Cunningham went to the same school as Lamar Jackson and during his training, he flashed some of Jackson’s athletic and deep-ball traits. His overall pass is raw. He could prove to be a versatile, mobile backup in the form of Tyrod Taylor if he lands in the right system as a late-round pick or priority free agent.

MORE: Updated top 125 overall players big board, position rankings

9. Jake Haener, Fresno State (6-0, 207 pounds)

Class: C

Haener has become a late riser because of his big arm and surprising zipper. Though Bennett got some wows for his throws, Haener’s deep ball finished second to Levis’ when the first set of QBs worked. However, Haener doesn’t offer much mobility, so he has to rely on his pocket presence and intelligence. It’s a late-round project at best.

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10. Clayton Tune, Houston (6-2 1/2, 220 pounds)

Class: C

Tune came in and looked at the piece and there is some benefit with his deep ball but he was shallow for much of his practice. He can move well for his size when throwing down, but tends to be inconsistent in the pocket.

11. Tanner McKee, Stanford (6-6, 231 pounds)

Class: C

McKee was a much-touted prospect entering college, but he was hurt because he didn’t have enough support. He has Joe Flacco-like height and pocket presence, but he didn’t show the same kind of deep ball ease. He will have to fight hard for a backup job in the NFL.

12. Max Duggan, TCU (6-1 1/2, 207 pounds)

Grade: C

Duggan, Bennett’s national championship counterpart, excels in more athleticism and ball placement, although he doesn’t have the strongest arm compared to the QBs above him. But here he was unpredictable and suffered a real disappointment in his accuracy. Duggan stays a long way to get drafted.

13. Tyson Bagent, Shepherd (6-3, 210 pounds)

Grade: C

Bagent is on the radar as a small school prospect after showing competitive accuracy and athleticism. The concern is his arm: he has trouble making decisions and releasing the ball quickly.

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