Randy Cross: Watson Has Unbelievable Upside

Mitchell Trubisky, Patrick Mahomes, and a handful of other quarterback prospects are generating a lot of buzz heading into this week’s NFL Draft – to the point where Deshaun Watson almost feels like a forgotten or unknown commodity. 

That doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. 

“To me, he’s the quarterback in this draft that I’d want to get my hands on – (and) not only (because) of what he did in college,” CBS Sports Network college football analyst and three-time Super Bowl champion Randy Cross said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “We all get too caught up in what they do in college and how they play in college and sort of see it through the lens of your favorite team. You kind of forget it’s about progressing. It’s about getting better. It’s about the upside of these guys once they get drafted going into the NFL.”

Watson threw for 8,697 yards, ran for 1,734 yards and accounted for 97 touchdowns (76 passing, 21 rushing) over the last two seasons. The scary part? He has room for improvement. 

A lot of room for improvement.

“I think Deshaun Watson has got an unbelievable upside,” Cross said. “You look at him and say, ‘Man, he did all that and he can still get better?’ His technique can definitely get better. You’re not going to improve him as a leader. You’re not going to improve him as a guy that can just can go for it in the biggest of spots and stand the tallest of tall in the biggest of spots. So I’m a big Deshaun Watson fan and I’m a believer in what he’s going to be able to do at the next level.”

Watson left an indelible mark on college football, beating Nick Saban and Alabama in his final game at Clemson. Watson threw for 420 yards and had four touchdowns (three pass, one rush) in a 35-31 win over the Tide in January. It was Clemson’s first national title since 1981.

“I think the way he finished the year, the way he’s played overall, I think personally he should have won the Heisman if you judge it on what he did for his team and all that,” Cross said. “But (Lamar) Jackson had such a huge lead from the beginning of the year that he really couldn’t catch up.”

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