Jevan Snead, Ole Miss
Updated March 21, 2010-
Snead never came close to picking up his play and matching his 2008 levels. In turn, he has plummeted down draft boards and will likely come off the board in the 4th round or later. Snead has been just average so far this off-season and done nothing to help his stock. It’s disappointing to see how far this once highly regarded prospect has fallen but he will still get drafted.
For someone who really only had one good season and has struggled with accuracy at times, maybe this is a blessing in disguise as there’s no pressure on him. If he had been a first or early-second round pick the expectations would have been much higher and now he’ll get to spend some time as a #3 QB somewhere and work his way up the ladder. It’s harder to get a fair shot at starting regularly, but in some aspects, it’s far easier than coming down the red carpet that is the NFL draft.
Jevan Snead entered the 2009 season with big expectations, Heisman expectations in fact, on the heels of a stellar 2008 season that saw him throw 26 TD and more than 2,700 yards. To say the least, 2009 has been less than kind to a player who was expected to challenge for the #1 draft slot come April. Unless things turn around quickly, and from the state of the Ole Miss o-line that likely won’t be happening, Snead could stay in school for his senior year.
A top recruit out of Stephenville High in Texas where he was twice named All-State and All-District, Snead originally signed with the Longhorns for the 2006 season.
When it became obvious that Snead was not going to unseat Colt McCoy he transferred to Ole Miss for the 2007 season. His one year in Texas saw Snead throw for 371 yards, 2 TD and 2 INT. Sitting out 2007, Snead grasped the Rebels starting QB job and ran with it, making a name for himself along the way in 2008.
His first year as a starting QB had some ups (253 yards, 4 TD and an INT against Wake Forest; 185 yards, 2 TD and INT in a 31-30 win over Florida; 140 yards, 2 TD and 0 INT against Arkansas but only 14 of 27 passing) and some downs (0 TD and 4 INT in a 23-17 loss to Vanderbilt; 0 TD and 2 INT against Samford) but he ultimately led Ole Miss to a Cotton Bowl win over Texas Tech, throwing for a career high 292 yards and 3 TD.
Snead finished 2nd in the SEC in TD and 3rd in passing average at 212.5 yards per game. His 145.5 passer rating was the SEC’s 3rd best and 21st in the nation. Snead earned 3rd team All-SEC from Phil Steele and Honorable Mention from the Associated Press.
The physical attributes are readily apparent in the 6’ 4” 217 pound Snead. His arm is one of the best in the nation and he possesses a snap quick release on top of that. The owner of Ole Miss records for longest completions at 88 and 86 yards, Snead throws a great deep ball with improving accuracy. He has surprisingly good mobility to buy time and make plays with his feet but very much has the look of a pocket passer. His mechanics have been improving and he is getting better at consistently setting his feet and looking off receivers. He has the potential to be a big play maker at the next level that will test defenses deep.
As his footwork improves his accuracy will follow. He completed 56% of his passes last year but so far that figure has dropped 10 points in 2009. He is still learning how to vary his throws and improve on short routes. After looking very poised in the pocket during 2008, this year the Ole Miss o-line is a complete mess and Snead is not handling it very well.
He looks far more jumpy in the pocket and has been guilty of forcing throws. Other times this year he has handled it masterfully, showing signs that he can improve. As noted, Snead had some poor games against opponents that he probably should have played better against and that has carried over to this year. Alabama’s standout defense really flustered him to the tune of 4 picks and no TD but South Carolina probably should not have done the same in what turned out to be Eric Norwood’s national coming-out-party.
Already is a flux, the Rebel O-line would be even more unsettled next year and Snead would lose Dexter McCluster and Shay Hodge, meaning this likely would have been the end of the run for Ole Miss before they started rebuilding again. So Snead is between a rock and a hard place. He may have to save his stock before the end of the year because he may not have the play makers to do it again in 2010.
His Heisman hopes are dashed, any talk of a #1 pick is likely gone and he may have slipped to the second round this April if he declares. Who knows where he’ll go in 2010 with the potential for a QB class featuring Sam Bradford, Jake Locker, Jimmy Clauson and Case Keenum, who, for the record, will make a run for the 2010 first round.