QB Offer Breakdown: Graham Mertz

QB Offer Breakdown: Graham Mertz

Roman Marciante
Graham Mertz is a 6'4" 205 lb prototype pro style QB from Mission Kansas. The 2019 signal caller quarterbacked Blue Valley North High School while amassing 3684 yards, 45 TD's vs 6 Int and completing 62% of his passes. This current Wisconsin Badger commit was recently offered by Jon Richt and has been racking up notable offers to include Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State.

Graham Mertz HUDL

Footwork/Rhythm: Very fundamentally sound with his footwork. This kid is well coached and it is clearly evident on film. Something as simple as his ability to sync his first step in rhythm with the snap from gun is proof positive of good fundamentals. Also very notable is his ability to stay tall and balanced after a throw. A good throw is habitually tied to a balanced finish. Also one of the better films this cycle on roll outs and outside the pocket. Gets his shoulders squared to the target and is routinely moving in the direction of the target on release. Eyes are down field and a lot of his big plays are a byproduct once Mertz is on the move. This is some of the more impressive roll out film since 2017 cycle Stanford signed signal caller Davis Mills. Rhythm is exceptionally good. Ball is continually out on time and in syncopated framework with his wide receivers. Three step drops do not contain any extra hitch idiosyncrasies and his front stride length is controlled and contained. Never found myself after many breakdowns of various films saying the ball was late. Anticipation is also shown on several throws.

Accuracy/Arm Strength/Arm Mechanics. Good accuracy leading to many run after catch scenarios. Many consistent accurate balls on the higher number routes to include, corners, deep posts and verticals. Ultimately when Mertz hits his target he hits them within a realigned simple catch radius and receivers aren't consistently "reaching" for balls. Arm Strength shows him more than capable to hit routes on the upper end of the route tree. His high school offense relies heavily upon vertical passing schemes and he is more than capable to make the throws necessary. Tracked in the 55 yard range on film with the capability to extent beyond. Wouldn't classify Mertz in the higher echelon of power throwers. (N'kosi Perry had better top end arm talent coming out of Vanguard for instance) But Mertz is more than capable of making throws of all capacity across the yard. Arm Mechanics are very consistent and repeatable not phased to pressure. Short rotational C guy with good effortless and repeatable delivery system. Mertz is not a kid who is going to sacrifice time with a big windup to deliver the ball. Db's are not routinely jumping any hitch in his mechanics.

Mobility: Would classify Mertz by all stretch of the imagination as a "Pro Style" quarterback. Mertz is zone read capable and shows the ability on film but I would not classify this as a strength. His threat index increases outside the pocket. Mertz has the ability to extend plays and allude defenders and shows "throw first" tenancy for good reason. Mertz possess that ability similar to an Aaron Rodgers where you need to cover your wide receivers longer than you think. Once Mertz goes outside the pocket it is like the dinner bell is going off in his head and he is looking to feed his receivers downfield. Ultimately Mertz in terms of mobility if very capable under the pro style umbrella but is not a touchdown in a bottle with his running ability to be classified as a dual threat.

Roman Rank: I really like Mertz. He shows matured quarterbacking feel to include looking off defenders and has a really good grasp of his offense. Mertz knows where the ball is supposed to go. Saw some great anticipatory foresight and balls in the air while receivers where still in their breaks. One thing I also walked away very impressed by is how diversified his offensive passing system is in comparison to many other high school offenses. His OC asks him to operate in various formations and the route combos are not simply mirrored route concepts. Mertz's system essentially requires him to read the whole field. That shows great trust from an OC and I don't think the recent offer boom Mertz has received is a fluke. Richt and company might be late to the party as Mertz is currently committed to Wisconsin plus his recruitment is going to be accompanied by various heavy hitter suitors. You also take into consideration that he is a Midwest kid with no seeming ties to Florida and this might be a half court heave. Either way rank him we will. 4 STARS. Easily deserving to occupy real estate in that upper stratosphere. Kid is a good one.
 

Comments (14)

Nice analysis. Two qualities that I consider to be important for a QB are anticipation, and accuracy. Hitting a receiver where he an catch the ball but has to reach is much different than hitting him in stride where he can maximize his running ability.
 
Nice analysis. Two qualities that I consider to be important for a QB are anticipation, and accuracy. Hitting a receiver where he an catch the ball but has to reach is much different than hitting him in stride where he can maximize his running ability.

Oh absolutely. Think you nailed it with that last comment. There is a difference between a completion and a completion even though that sounds like lunacy.
 
W
Love that we are going to be getting these kinds of analysis, but my one note would be that this probably goes on the recruiting board instead of eye in the sky (which don't lie).
 
Great analysis.

As long as we don't get super narrow sighted around this kid and Michael Johnson I have no problem recruiting him. Though I think its again kinda pointless to recruit a kid from Kansas committed to a B1G school with absolutely no connection to the staff/florida in any way. I guess it'll be telling if he visits at all in the spring/summer. I think this kids going to Wisconsin or Ohio State for sure. Like is this a University of Miami Qb? Plus even though the kid is athletic as you say, I'm really not seeing the point in us really going for definite Pro-style Qbs when our offense is very clearly being designed to run by a duel threat qb, and not just somebody with Alex Smith/Tony Romo quality running ability.
 
Excellent analysis!

Have you done these analyses on N’Kosi, Williams, and Weldon using their high school tape?

Would love to see a compare and contrast between the three also taking into consideration the competition they played against.

Might give us an idea of what to expect this spring and summer competition for the QB position because I think it’s going to be wide open donnybrook vs the incumbent, Rosier.

I realize Weldon and Perry are now one year removed from their HS playing days but at least we get an idea of all three’s comparative raw quarterbacking talents.

Probably too much to ask, but it would be interesting and more pertinent, because, quite honestly, even though the Mertz analysis is absolutely EXCELLENT, he’s at least 2-3 years away from ever taking a snap for us, assuming we can even lure him away from Wisconsin.

.
 
Great analysis.

As long as we don't get super narrow sighted around this kid and Michael Johnson I have no problem recruiting him. Though I think its again kinda pointless to recruit a kid from Kansas committed to a B1G school with absolutely no connection to the staff/florida in any way. I guess it'll be telling if he visits at all in the spring/summer. I think this kids going to Wisconsin or Ohio State for sure. Like is this a University of Miami Qb? Plus even though the kid is athletic as you say, I'm really not seeing the point in us really going for definite Pro-style Qbs when our offense is very clearly being designed to run by a duel threat qb, and not just somebody with Alex Smith/Tony Romo quality running ability.

Last year I noted the trend of Dual Threat offers far out numbering the pro style offers. Ultimately that was the case when you consider Trevor Lawrence, Jarren Williams, Joe Milton, Cameron Rising were listed as "pro guys." When we took Artur Sitkowski's commitment he was always listed as a pro style guy however he did show the ability to run the zone read and even flashed a 60 yard touchdown in that capacity.

Fast forward and the trend this year is that more "pro style" qb's but here is what I know. Richt has said that he is not really 100% recruiting under a certain umbrella more than the other. He simply want's mobility. I don't think you will see a quarterback taken that either can't A) pick up a first down with his legs and beyond or B) extend plays within the pocket.

In the case of Mertz, he is exceptional in the later. He can elude pressure extend plays outside and hit the deep threat. Ultimately I think I have come to grips that Richt will take quarterbacks in both fields. And when Mertz might not be the most "mobile" of all the qb's offered this cycle, his high level function of the quarterback position gives him a leg up on the competition.
 
Excellent analysis!

Have you done these analyses on N’Kosi, Williams, and Weldon using their high school tape?

Would love to see a compare and contrast between the three also taking into consideration the competition they played against.

Might give us an idea of what to expect this spring and summer competition for the QB position because I think it’s going to be wide open donnybrook vs the incumbent, Rosier.

I realize Weldon and Perry are now one year removed from their HS playing days but at least we get an idea of all three’s comparative raw quarterbacking talents.

Probably too much to ask, but it would be interesting and more pertinent, because, quite honestly, even though the Mertz analysis is absolutely EXCELLENT, he’s at least 2-3 years away from ever taking a snap for us, assuming we can even lure him away from Wisconsin.

.

I have done those exact breakdowns when I was with TOS. I can more than happily grab those in the upcoming weeks. I don't think plagiarism laws apply to myself lol but I will double check the site to site etiquette in that regard.
 
Seems to be QB that is in the old traditional Miami mode. I think If a qb can extend plays he doesn't necessarily have to be the RPO type of player that seems to be Richts recent preference. I wish we had a shot but it seems that Wisky is the perfect place for him.
 
I have done those exact breakdowns when I was with TOS. I can more than happily grab those in the upcoming weeks. I don't think plagiarism laws apply to myself lol but I will double check the site to site etiquette in that regard.

Would love to see those.

I have my own ideas about the three QBs, but obviously, my opinions are cobbled together from some HS highlights here and there and some few seconds of practice throws.

At least this way I can have a general idea of their comparative strengths and weaknesses from someone that’s actually played the position and knows what to look for.

The reason being, this is the first time in a long time, that a Miami QB competition not only has been this wide open, but could conceivably go to one of four candidates, even a true freshman, because he’s an early enrollee, even though it’s just a slightly long shot.

This is going to be a super interesting QB competition.

I can’t wait.
 
Seems to be QB that is in the old traditional Miami mode. I think If a qb can extend plays he doesn't necessarily have to be the RPO type of player that seems to be Richts recent preference. I wish we had a shot but it seems that Wisky is the perfect place for him.

Let us define the "RPO" tag a little further. Both Pro Style and DT qb's can run them. Obviously the Philadelphia Eagles were able to very effectively run RPO's with in the framework of their offense all the way to a superbowl win. The eagles were very publicized in their usage of RPO's. But note both Wentz and Foles are not really your classic dual threats.

Ultimately the RPO's get more multi faceted when you add a "quarterback run" dimension into them but so many types of RPO's these days. For instance I think you can recall the stop Ahmmon Richard's touchdown in our bowl win vs WVU? It was an IZ with a stop option on the outside. Kaaya simply read the cushion from the corner and we stole a TD. (Well we didn't steal it, Ahmmon kind of had a lot to do with that)

So in closing, any QB can be a RPO type player based on the RPO design. But not any QB can just run the heavier QB run focused portions of them. Richt utilizes RPO's that we know. I think he tailor made some for Rosier that Kaaya simply couldn't effectively run. But Kaaya definitely was effective as well with RPO concepts.
 
Mertz.gif

IIRC that other Mertz came from the Midwest too.

Why he would consider O$Uck is beyond me; Meyer kills his QBs running them...Then again, the bag man cometh $$$.
 
Let us define the "RPO" tag a little further. Both Pro Style and DT qb's can run them. Obviously the Philadelphia Eagles were able to very effectively run RPO's with in the framework of their offense all the way to a superbowl win. The eagles were very publicized in their usage of RPO's. But note both Wentz and Foles are not really your classic dual threats.

Ultimately the RPO's get more multi faceted when you add a "quarterback run" dimension into them but so many types of RPO's these days. For instance I think you can recall the stop Ahmmon Richard's touchdown in our bowl win vs WVU? It was an IZ with a stop option on the outside. Kaaya simply read the cushion from the corner and we stole a TD. (Well we didn't steal it, Ahmmon kind of had a lot to do with that)

So in closing, any QB can be a RPO type player based on the RPO design. But not any QB can just run the heavier QB run focused portions of them. Richt utilizes RPO's that we know. I think he tailor made some for Rosier that Kaaya simply couldn't effectively run. But Kaaya definitely was effective as well with RPO concepts.
Thanks Roman. Good analysis. Looking at Richt's Georgia qb's do you believe that he has changed in the type of QB that he is recruiting or is he just playing the hand that was dealt him?
 
Thanks Roman. Good analysis. Looking at Richt's Georgia qb's do you believe that he has changed in the type of QB that he is recruiting or is he just playing the hand that was dealt him?

Feel like he's worked with various skill sets over the course of his career. But his last sec championship was with a dual threat qb (Shockley) and a heisman to his credit was with a dual threat (Ward).

But can't forget that Stafford was a number one overall. I honestly feel Richt really is more impartial about the type of the qb and more preferential to their unique ability.
 

2021 Commits

S
6'5"
220
Fort Lauderdale, FL
DT
6'4"
255
Miami, FL
OG
6'2"
295
Miami, FL
DT
6'4"
290
Miami, FL
DE
6'5"
210
Miami, FL
WR
6'2"
180
Miami, FL
RB
6'0"
225
Hollywood, FL
TE
6'4"
210
Frisco, TX
STR
6'3"
190
Melbourne, FL
S
5'11"
200
Miami, FL

Latest Predictions

by SmoovEth
High
by underdogthakur1
Medium
by underdogthakur
High
by Stylie
Medium
by whoopingcane
Certain

2020 Schedule

09/10
UAB
Miami Gardens, FL
W 31 - 14
09/19
Louisville
Louisville, KY
W 47 - 34
09/26
Florida State
Miami Gardens, FL
W 52 - 10
10/10
Clemson
Clemson, SC
10/17
Pittsburgh
Miami Gardens, FL
10/24
Virginia
Miami Gardens, FL
11/06
NC State
Raleigh, NC
11/14
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, VA
11/21
Georgia Tech
Miami Gardens, FL
11/28
Wake Forest
Winston-Salem, NC
12/05
North Carolina
Miami Gardens, FL
Top