Phil Savage evaluates football talent for a living. Savage, who was once the general manager of the Cleveland Browns, now serves as as the president of the Senior Bowl. Savage has seen plenty of talented quarterbacks during his 21 years as a talent evaluator, and it’s his belief Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott has what it takes to finally get the Bulldogs over the hump in the SEC.
“He makes them a legitimate contender in the SEC West,” Savage told CBSSports.com’s Jeremy Fowler. “Big arm, sturdy lower body, accuracy downfield might be questioned.”
At 6-2 and 235 pounds, Prescott is the ideal quarterback in head coach Dan Mullen‘s offensive system. The same system which once made Florida’s Tim Tebow into a Heisman Trophy winner and two-time national champion. Prescott could provide a similar presence for the Bulldogs.
Mullen described certain traits in Prescott that run parallel to all the things once said about Tebow.
“Ability to win,” Mullen described. “The it factor type of deal. He has it. Brings up the level of play with everybody around him. He’s going to make something happen, whether in run game or his arm with the passing game or improvising and extending plays.”
In 11 games last season, Prescott threw for 1,940 yards and ran for 829 more. Prescott’s numbers are similar to those posted by Auburn’s Nick Marshall when he led his team to an SEC championship. The difference is Marshall has a better surrounding cast. While Auburn will be a contender again this season based on the talent that returns to the team, Mississippi State needs Prescott to take his game to the next level.
“He will be the key to them either getting over the hump or not,” an unnamed SEC West head coach told Fowler.
If Prescott plays a little more like Tebow and a little less like Marshall, the Bulldogs could finally challenge Alabama, Auburn and LSU in the SEC West.