In And Out
The truth is that Cody Kessler’s 2016 season was as strange as it was difficult to evaluate. Playing for a team worthy of NFL relegation (if such a thing existed) Kessler was often-injured, rotated in-and-out of the game and called upon far earlier than even he could’ve ever imagined.
In the nine-appearances, Kessler left three of those games with an injury (pulled another time by coach’s decision.) In an inconsistent organization, Kessler’s play was, well, inconsistent. He had the quintessential make-up of a rookie passer in 2016. Simplified, half-of-the-field reads, deer-in-the-headlights under-pressure and safe throws, Kessler did what he was asked most of the time.
Kessler doesn’t have the requisite arm-strength to threaten every portion of the field but, what he lacks in arm-talent, he makes up for with anticipation and ball-placement. He’s a plus-athlete and throws well on the move. The number of head-scratching mistakes he made as a rookie, for a one-win team no less, could be counted on one hand.
He should’ve been the starter from week-three forward (when healthy) and should get the opening day nod in 2017. If he improves his ability to recognize open-lanes within the pocket to set-up a launch point and buries his head into passing-concept progressions, he could be a middle-of-the-pack starter.