Matt Barkley (QB, USC) vs California game tape

The video below contains every┬ápassing attempt by Matt Barkley in last night’s 30-9 victory over California. Game tape supplied by JMPasq.


  1. troy

    Not a very impressive performance overall. There seemed to be a whole lot more high percentage type throws than USC usually runs, and nothing really stood out and made you say “wow.” He did show some great accuracy on a couple of those deep fades, however. I’ve heard that his deep ball tends to flutter due to his arm strength, but I didn’t notice any of that during this game.

  2. Kalani


    I’ve been excited to see him play. I don’t know much about QB play or scouting, but it sure seemed like he didn’t have outstanding accuracy. What am I missing? Thanks.

  3. Jared

    Even though it was a down game. I still think he had several really nice throws. Those 2 deep ball passes were perfectly thrown. He was less than a foot off on 2 more big-time plays. His touch is awesome. His arm strength is more than adequate. I think he’s a great prospect and I hope we have a chance at getting him.

  4. Micah

    His arm looked better last year when watching film. Seemed to have more zip on his throws.

  5. Nate Dogg

    Pretty disappointing showing by Barkley. I thought he looked really off watching him live and watching it again he didn’t look any better. Any idea why he was so scatter shot?

    • Colin

      I think part of it was the putrid performance by the USC offensive line. Cal was constantly in the backfield, driving lineman back and shedding the blocks. Barkley has little time to setup, let alone go through his progressions.

      He needs major improvements on his footwork. One of his main problems this season is he throws off his back foot too much. I think it’s correctble though, and it hasn’t deterred my opinion of him much.

  6. CouchHawk

    While not the most statistically stellar game for Mr. Barkley, his game mangement, decision making skills and ball protection abilities were absolutely off the charts -this guy is the real deal and wins – even when his “A” game is lacking. Just what we need. We have never had a Qback with this kid’s overall skill set and maturity. Come on, JS, you know you want him. Trade up!

  7. FWBrodie

    1:48 – Shows some beautiful touch on a sneakily difficult little throw, one that Whitehurst botches regularly.
    3:23 – He’s got a single high safety and man coverage on the receiver to his right who is running a go route. You can see him hold the safety with his eyes which gives his receiver the opportunity to beat his man deep and gives him a nice safe space to throw to. Beautiful.

    Throwing off the back foot pretty often. Kind of a shaky game. Lots of air under his deep ball, although most of the time there wasn’t anything to fear on top in terms of safety support so that could just be by design. He looks on the unathletic side for today’s NFL. Doubt Pete Carroll is a fan of that aspect of his game.

  8. Tom

    I’m not sure why there’s so much hype for Matt Barkley.

    Does he have an NFL arm? Doesn’t look like it.
    Does he have good mechanics? Needs improvement. Throws off his back foot too often.
    Does he throw a quality deep ball? Nope
    Does he have a keen sense of pocket awareness? I don’t see it. Holds the ball too long
    Has he improved much from 2010? When I watch game tape, I don’t see improvement.
    Who does he resemble in the NFL? Mark Sanchez, without a doubt.

    Barkley has many warts to his game and while Sanchez fooled the Jets into thinking he was top 5 NFL talent, I imagine Barkley will do the same and hope he’s long gone before the Hawks have a chance at drafting Matt.

    Here’s a 2010 draft analysis video and Matt has similar negatives today that he had in 2010.

    Just say “No” to Matt Barkley as a future Hawk. Barkley is vastly OVERRATED.

    • Rob

      I disagree strongly Tom. For starters, he has more than enough arm to make all of the key NFL throws. Is he Ryan Mallett? Certainly not. But then neither are most of the starting quarterbacks in the NFL when it comes to arm strength. There’s enough there and there’s very little concern in that regard.

      Mechanically he’s very sharp. People are latching onto the backfoot thing, but this isn’t an issue I’ve detected as being consistent through several hours of gametape. From an upper body POV he’s very good in terms of delivery point and timing. His pocket awareness is actually a major positive IMO – he’s very good at stepping away from pressure and completing throws. A handful of mistakes in this regard – not uncommon for any player even A.Luck – are being sensationalised to try and make a point. I would say the vast majority of evidence shows a guy who quickly goes through progressions, makes good decisions and has a strong feel for pressure.

      He has improved every year from being a true freshman, I see no reason why that won’t continue.

      I don’t agree with the Sanchez comparison, they are very different players both physically and mechanically. I doubt it’s a comparison that would be made if they didn’t both attend USC, and I generally would avoid NFL comparisons at QB because rarely are two players similar enough to make it an accurate judgement.

      Is he over rated? Certainly not – I see more negativity about this guy than any other player eligible for 2012. To say ‘NO’ completely to a player of this talent would be foolish and OTT.

      • Tom

        You disect more film and have more expertise than I do in player evaluation but when I watch Barkley, he just looks like a very good college QB but would be a game manager in the NFL that will need a lot of talent around him to succeed. He doesn’t look like a guy that could carry a team.

        I see too much indecision, holding the ball too long, throwing off the back foot, not ideal NFL size, not ideal NFL arm. I’ve seen some good accuracy and some good zip on quick slants, but Barkley would scare me if I was drafting in the top 7.

        You know your game tape, so I’ll defer to you for more expertise but I’m just expressing some trepidation about what looks to be a game manager as a top 5 NFL draft selection.

        Good site you have here.

        • Colin

          I’m interested in your recommendation if Barkley isn’t the guy, Tom.

          • Tom

            I wish I had a great recommendation. I was waiting for Tannehill to show me more because he’s raw and inexperienced but has good athleticism and nfl arm but isn’t a 1st rdr. Needs more time.

            Landry Jones is alright but needs a clean pocket and isn’t impressive under pressure. Not overly confident in what I’ve seen in him because his pocket awareness has a lot to be desired. He shows some flashes with his NFL size and arm but that only takes a guy so far.

            I just noticed that Walter has Seattle taking Landry Jones at #7 over Matt Barkley but how good is Walter?

            What about RG3? I need to see more and reason I like this site because Rob will break down and show tape of prospects. RG3 throws a pretty deep ball but am not sure about his overall mechanics and would need to see more tape. More of a 2nd rd guy with upside.

            Don’t want Cousins from MSU.

            It’s really a tough call midway through the college season, so hopefully, these raw signal callers will step up and live up to their athleticism with good decision making, reading D’s, pocket awareness, etc.

            If Seattle was on the clock at #9 and both Barkley and Jones were on the board and someone had a gun to my head and said you have to draft a QB, I would have a slight lean to Jones but am not overly enamored with him, either.

            Barkley’s inconsistencies scare me as he looks to play smaller than the 6’2″ size, his pocket awareness needs improvement and he doesn’t show that ability to put his foot on the throat of an opponent. I know fans like the way he goes through his progressions but I’ve seen him lock onto Woods and rightfully so.

            I’m a pretty harsh grader on college QB’s looking to make the NFL transition and wish I had a high recommendation but these signal callers less Luck have areas that need improvement to be an elite NFL baller.

        • PatrickH

          It is interesting that, in the 2010 highlights that you pointed to, Barkley seemed to have clean pockets and more time to throw. In comparison, in 2 of the 3 USC games that I have watched this year (vs ASU and Cal), the pass rushers seemed to get to Barkley more quickly.

          Also, while watching the game on Thursday night, I thought that Barkley’s passes in the first half, even though some were inaccurate and unsuccessful, nevertheless caused the Cal LB and safeties to back-off a bit. This in turn opened some holes for the USC run game to be successful in the second half (their run game was bad in the first half). Of course, it also helped that USC was never behind, because of the utter incompetence of Cal’s offense.

        • Rob

          Happy to have your take on things Tom, thanks for providing a solid counter and breaking things down from a different perspective.

          • Meat

            I too enjoy the discussing and counter the two of you started. Also, seeing it is constructive is a plus. It is truly hard to find a place to read comments, discuss, etc without a lot of that internet forum hatred/nonsense. Try going to and bleacher and discuss.
            Anyway. I watched some tape on Barkely, not a lot, and I have mixed impression too. We all know Luck is not happening, and to be honest I am sick of hearing about Luck and the media’s ‘suck for luck’ crap every single day. So out of the QB that are eligible this year, what QB do you think should be on Seattle’s radar? Jones instead of barkley?

        • Colin

          The big reason I like Barkley more than Jones is A.) Barkley is a much better passer on the move and
          B.) he plays in a pro system. There are very few scripted plays where he just throws blindly. This is not to say he does not make some dumb mistakes but I think you can justify them moreso than Landry’s. The Bob Stoops offense is the passing version of the Delaware Wing T run offense. It’s a system based on where certain people should be at certain times and your assignment is dictated on that script. Disrupt the rythm of that and the play almost certainly falls apart. Can you trust Landry Jones to handle situtions that aren’t practiced repeatedly?

  9. RichieRich

    Pete Carroll has his eyes set on Matt Barkley. The thing about Matt is his ability to play, lead, and compete. He is exactly what Pete Carroll and Jon Sneider want to build the Seahawks Franchise around. They are not messing around, they will do absolutely anything to get the QBOTF. Matt Barkley is not Andrew Luck. I feel really bad for Andrew Luck because so much as been made of him that he HAS to deliver in the NFL. If he does not meet expectations, then he swirls down the bust drain. I am 99.9% sure that Matt Barkley will be a Seattle Seahawk. The talent is there. The potential is there. The connection is there. The leadership is there. And the need is there……

  10. Tom

    I’ve had a very mixed bag of results when analyzing QB’s but have improved over the past 5 years.

    Being critical, I didn’t think Peyton Manning nor Drew Brees would live up to the excellence they’ve displayed in the NFL. Peyton had those happy feet and couldn’t beat Florida. I thought Brees was a system QB at Purdue and would get punished in the NFL. Wrong!

    Where I did nail a couple was liking Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. I distinctively remember a couple of games of each that stood out. Brady’s Orange Bowl game against Alabama where he looks the same in that game as he does now and was dynamite. The Rodgers’ Cal bowl game vs a very solid Va Tech D when Aaron was missing his top target and he disected Tech for 400+ yds and 40+ pts with nobody at receiver. I had high grades for those 2.

    2006: I never liked Leinart, never liked VYoung but did like Jay Cutler, though, he hasn’t turned out as well as I projected but at least he’s still a starter. He has some Jeff George to his game. One of the Vandy games he opened my eyes was against Florida, I believe. He was firing balls into some tight windows with authority.

    I did like Rivers over Eli. Didn’t know much about Ben in 2004.

    Josh Freeman was an enigma for me because he was one of those raw QB’s that had a great soph year with Jordy Nelson but looked to have regressed his jr campaign. His progression has been a pleasant surprise.

    Wasn’t a fan of Sanchez and was so so on Stafford, who is playing pretty well if he wasn’t injured all the time and starting to look very skittish in the pocket.

    I thought Bradford would be better but it’s only his 2nd year and never was a fan of Clausen or Tebow. Colt McCoy has been a bit of a positive surprise for me, too, but he went in the 3rd and I had him as a 4th rdr.

    As I said, I have a mixed bag of results. The two losers were Manning and Brees and the two winners were Brady and Rodgers.

    I don’t feel great about Barkley but he could be another Brees if he studies and has the smarts to read D’s like Drew. That is where most of us are handicapped as we don’t get to talk ball, talk D and have them run through tape showing us how they read a D and go through their progressions or hot routes.

    Sorry to ramble, just throwing out some names for conversation.

    • Rob

      Thanks for your thoughts Tom, they make for an interesting read.

© 2024 Seahawks Draft Blog

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑