Bortles wants to separate from the QB pack

Bortles wants to separate from the QB pack
February 21, 2014, 5:45 pm
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Making the right decisions on and off the field, not embarrassing the franchise or your last name I think is huge, especially when you’re playing quarterback in the National Football League.
Blake Bortles

Blake Bortles is a massive human being. The junior quarterback from Central Florida stands 6-feet, 5 inches and 230 pounds. He has a cannon arm and a Ben Roethlisberger-esque ability to extend plays and produce big gains.

In other words, he’s a prototypical NFL quarterback. Those tools, which will be on displayed Sunday when he participates in every drill at the NFL Scouting Combine, have vaulted him up most draft boards.

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A few mock drafts have him being taken No. 1 overall by the Houston Texans. At least one has Bortles going to the Raiders at No. 5. Most others have him going somewhere in between.

Bortles is seen as more of a project than Louisville’s Teddy Bridgewater, though it’s believed he has greater upside. The Raiders are still gathering information and formulating opinions, but it’s believed that Bortles, Bridgewater and Johnny Manziel are the passers worthy of a top 5 pick.

There isn’t a slam dunk among this trio, and Bortles is trying to separate himself from the other two. He said Friday that his upside and lack of character concerns will help achieve that end.

“The skill set I possess is being able to extend plays, being able to handle a lot of offense,” Bortles told reporters on hand. “Having played at UCF, dealing with a lot of things as far as handling an offense, making all the throws and being trustworthy are important qualities.

“Making the right decisions on and off the field, not embarrassing the franchise or your last name I think is huge, especially when you’re playing quarterback in the National Football League.”

That defines the type of leader the Raiders are looking for. Whether Bortles is the type of player they’re looking for remains uncertain. The match could work, considering the Raiders hope to start a veteran quarterback in 2014 and Bortles could use some time to develop.

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Bortles goal during this pre-draft process is to be recognized as the best passer in this draft. That starts at the Scouting Combine.

“The goal is to be the top quarterback prospect,” Bortles said. “That’s why I left college early, that’s why I came out. I want to be the top quarterback prospect, and I believe I can do that.”