Michael Penix Jr.'s draft stock should be skyrocketing after Pro Day

Mar 2, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Washington quarterback Michael Penix (QB08) during the 2024 NFL
Mar 2, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Washington quarterback Michael Penix (QB08) during the 2024 NFL / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Folks, we may have identified this year's rapid riser in the NFL draft and it shouldn't really surprise anyone. Michael Penix Jr. has been graded as a second-round (or late-first) quarterback in the 2024 NFL Draft, but after his Pro Day performance on Thursday, late-first may even be too late.

Penix showed up and wowed the scouts in attendance at his Pro Day and now some are talking about him rising up to the middle of the first round.

While his passing was impressive just like everyone expected, his athleticism was shockingly off the charts for a quarterback who doesn't run much.

In fact, he had a whopping eight rushing yards throughout the entire 2023 season with Washington but he didn't need to scramble much. He was dissecting defenses with his arm talent. But now that we know he's an elite passer, all that's missing are those legs.

Well, the doubters were silenced on Thursday as he ran a scorching-fast 4.46-second 40-yard dash. at his Pro Day.

Just because he didn't run much at Washington (70 carries for 100 yards), doesn't mean he can't. He just didn't need to and most of those rushing attempts were sacks.

Now that NFL teams know he has the speed and athleticism to tuck and run, he's only going to be that much more valuable. A 4.46-second 40 is no joke. That's elite. That time would be good enough to tie him for fourth all-time at the NFL Combine for quarterbacks with Justin Fields and Brad Smith. Most quarterbacks opt not to run it at the combine which is why we waited until Pro Day to see Penix run his.

If we're looking at the quickest-rising NFL draft stocks in this year's class, I would say the guy who is graded as an early second-rounder who had over 9,500 passing yards and 67 touchdowns over the past two seasons while completing 65 percent of his passes and who ran a sub-4.5 40-yard dash should be at the top of the list.

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