A day after Christmas and just five days before the New Year, Washington quarterback Jacob Eason made his 2020 intentions clear: he will forgo his senior season at the University of Washington and enter the 2020 NFL Draft.

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. rates Jacob Eason as the fourth best quarterback set to be available in this year’s draft. Heisman trophy winner Joe Burrow of LSU leads the pack, followed by Oregon’s Justin Herbert and Alabama’s Tua Togovalia. Togovalia’s season was cut short by a myriad of injuries, most prominently a dislocated hip and posterior wall fracture. Couple that with Oregon’s less pro-style offense that could hinder Herbert’s draft stock, and Eason could be the second quarterback off the board in the right circumstance.

Eason still could be the fourth or fifth quarterback taken as well, with Georgia’s Jake Fromm also in the conversation. Walterfootball.com, my favorite website for year-round draft coverage, rates Eason as the 5th-best quarterback prospect behind the three quarterbacks mentioned earlier as well as Fromm.

Though Eason began his college career at the University of Georgia, he sat out the 2018 season in order to transfer with eligibility to the University of Washington. Eason was born in Lake Stevens, Washington, about 36 miles north of Seattle. It would seem unlikely the Seattle Seahawks expend their first or second round pick on a quarterback, so Eason’s next step in his career is likely to take him outside the state of Washington.

The top-rated quarterback and widely considered the best pro-style prospect of the 2016 high school class, Eason’s college career has been a bumpy road. When he’s on the field, he produces at a high level. In his sophomore season, he was injured during the first game, and backup Jake Fromm took his chance and never relinquished the starting role at Georgia. Eason would become a national champion that season; as the backup quarterback.

Between starting only one game that season and sitting out a season, Eason lost a lot of valuable field time that could’ve helped his NFL draft stock.

Eason’s 2019 season was a good one, as the 22-year-old passed for 3132 yards, 23 touchdowns and 8 interceptions on a 64.2% completion rate and 7.7 yards per attempt.

As the fourth best quarterback prospect, Eason falls in the middleground where he won’t be selected in the Top 10, but he likely won’t make it past the early second round. This could lead a team with a little more security at the quarterback position to give Eason time to develop, ala Aaron Rodgers. But at the same time, don’t rule out a team selecting Eason with the intentions of making him their Day One starter for the 2020-21 NFL season.

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Header Photo Credit: Stephen Brashear/AP

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