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From nobody to the top of the first round of the draft - Josh Allen

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https://www.si.com/vault/2017/05/09/no-one-no-1

JOSH ALLEN holds a deck of cards facedown and shuffles. The Wyoming quarterback has mystified his Tennessee counterpart, Jarrett Guarantano, the way he mystified Mountain West Conference defenders last season, and Guarantano wants another chance to crack Allen's trick.

"One more time," Guarantano says.

"You sure?" Allen asks.

"You're not getting me again," Guarantano says.

The cards are a blur as Allen passes them from his left hand to his right. "Stop," Guarantano says. Allen lifts the stack in his right hand so only his audience can see the bottom card. It is a seven of spades. Allen waves the card in front of Guarantano. The 6'5", 235-pound 20-year-old flashes a Ferris-Bueller-breaking-the-fourth-wall smirk and says, "Seven of spades."

"How are you doing it?" Guarantano asks. Allen won't tell. His life is about to get picked apart by NFL scouts. This is one secret he can keep.

A few yards away, Notre Dame's Brandon Wimbush, TCU's Kenny Hill and Indiana's Richard Lagow linger at the driving range of a swanky country club on a perfect March afternoon in San Diego, learning the finer points of the golf swing. The five quarterbacks are spending their spring breaks polishing their skills with private quarterback trainer George Whitfield. For the first half of the day, the QBs shuttle between the field and the classroom. They throw into rapidly closing windows in the end zone, and they take notes while former NFL offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye II draws seven-man protection schemes on a whiteboard. The golf lesson lets the players clear their heads and rest their bodies. Whitfield calls this event Shark Week, and Allen is about to become Jaws.

One month later Josh's parents, Joel and LaVonne, are at a wedding in Lake Tahoe, Calif. Between events, some friends head upstairs to change clothes. They return with news: "Your son is all over ESPN."

"Yeah, right," Joel says. Then his phone buzzes. In Laramie, Wyo., Josh's phone also buzzes.

In Philadelphia, ESPN has just wrapped its NFL draft coverage. Seconds before sign-off, reporter Adam Schefter passed along a prediction: "There was one personnel director who told me this weekend, 'You can put it in the books. Josh Allen will be the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft next year.'" It's a bold prediction. Allen is a former zero-star recruit with one year of experience as a starter at the FBS level. And oh, yeah, USC, UCLA and Oklahoma State have star quarterbacks eligible to enter the 2018 draft while Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson returns for Louisville. What's going on?

NONE OF this seemed remotely plausible when Allen played at Firebaugh (Calif.) High. As high schoolers, Hill, Wimbush and Guarantano worked their way through the Quarterback Industrial Complex—Elite 11 combines, multiple college camps, high-level seven-on-seven passing leagues—and became objects of desire for frenzied fans of many colleges. Their school choices were covered extensively. Allen? He could have played in Division III or in the NAIA, but he generated almost no interest from the upper divisions.

In part this was because Allen sprouted late, and even as a senior he was a string bean—6'4", 185 pounds—flinging passes all over California's Central Valley for a school that had produced exactly one FBS prospect in its history. Football players of consequence do not come from Firebaugh, a farm town of 8,300 that's 45 minutes northwest of Fresno. In 2013, Texas coach Tom Herman was the offensive coordinator at Ohio State. Joel contacted Herman because Herman's wife, Michelle, is from Firebaugh. Joel figured Herman might be the only coach who didn't work at Fresno State who was even aware of the place. Joel never heard back.

"We got a Subway a few years ago, and that was a big deal," says Firebaugh High baseball coach Alex Gutierrez, an alum who coached Allen and his younger brother, Jason. Recruiters may also have missed Allen because he had been too busy playing baseball and basketball and working on his dad's farm or at his mom's restaurant to dive into a recruiting circuit that identifies prospects at 14, makes them social media stars by 16 and persuades them to transfer by 20. Fresno State considered him for a walk-on spot, but that possibility evaporated when the Bulldogs took former Duke quarterback Brandon Connette as a graduate transfer. When Allen eventually chose Reedley (Calif.) College, a junior college 20 miles southeast of Fresno, barely anyone noticed.

But everyone is taking notice of Allen now. On Jan. 9, agents beat a path past the rows of cotton and cantaloupes on the family's 2,000-acre farm to sit in the Allens' living room. When Clemson beat Alabama for the national title, Josh watched the game with six representatives from mega-agency CAA. Though college players aren't allowed to sign with agents, they are allowed to take informational meetings. LaVonne served them pizza as the CAA reps broke down everything their company might do for Allen should he decide to turn pro. That night he decided his lone season as the starter at Wyoming was preparation enough. After one year at Reedley he had transferred to Wyoming, where in 2016 he threw for 3,203 yards with 28 touchdowns and 15 interceptions, leading the Cowboys to the top of the Mountain Division in the Mountain West. He called some of his receivers and told them he'd break the news to Cowboys coach Craig Bohl in the morning. "As soon as I made that decision, anxiety started running through my body," Allen says. "I didn't sleep one ounce, one bit, one hour, one second that night."

It was all happening so fast. Only months earlier had Allen become the full-time starter for Bohl and offensive coordinator Brent Vigen. The pair had recruited and developed Carson Wentz at North Dakota State before decamping for Laramie after the 2013 season. NFL personnel people look at Allen's size and speed and his ability to flick his wrist and make a football soar and wonder whether Allen might be another Wentz—who started 16 games as a rookie with the Eagles in '16. Vigen sees similarities between the paths Wentz and Allen took, but he also saw a rawness in Allen that could be refined with one more season in Wyoming, where the offense, like the one Vigen ran at North Dakota State, looks like an NFL offense.

Vigen told Josh he thought he could benefit from another year in school after the Cowboys' 24--21 Poinsettia Bowl loss to BYU on Dec. 21, but the buzz had already begun. Shortly after the season ended, a text popped up on Vigen's phone: "Is your guy ready for the league?" It was from Wentz. Vigen made a plea to Allen's father in a call on the morning of Jan. 10. He was driving from Laramie to the Denver airport for a recruiting trip to Wisconsin and was so preoccupied with Allen's potential departure that he had forgotten his coat. Joel agreed with Vigen but told him that he would support Josh in whatever he decided. After the call Joel went to Josh's bedroom; Vigen had just called him. Josh declined the call and looked at his dad. "You talked to Coach Vigen, didn't you?" Josh said. The anxiety of the night before came spilling out, and Josh found himself agreeing with his father and Vigen. He called Bohl and delivered the news. "I love you, Josh," Bohl said. When Vigen landed in chilly Madison, his phone lit up. "I didn't have a coat," he says, "but we had a quarterback, so I was O.K. with it."

ALLEN'S CONTEMPORARIES in the high school class of 2014 were noticed early. Deshaun Watson, who would lead Clemson to a national title and go No. 12 to the Texans in last month's draft, committed to the Tigers as a sophomore at Gainesville (Ga.) High. When Allen was a high school sophomore, he was 5'10" and weighed 145 pounds. Gutierrez, who was also the quarterbacks coach, called Allen tortuga, Spanish for "tortoise," after watching him plod around the bases. Allen hit 6'3" as a junior and grew an inch taller as a senior, but no matter how much he lifted, he couldn't pack muscle onto his frame. This didn't make him soft, though. Firebaugh football coach Bill Magnusson used to make Josh hit the blocking sled with his linemen. People would ask, Aren't you worried you'll hurt your QB? "No," Magnusson would reply. "I'm worried about him not being a prima donna."

Allen got quicker and learned to evade pass rushers, but no one would have called him fast. He threw for 3,061 yards as a senior, but he'd only attended a few camps. Instead, he played baseball and basketball in a gym named after his grandfather. When Joel needed cotton chopped or irrigation pipe moved in the cantaloupe fields, Josh and Jason joined the farm's employees. (Josh still has nightmares about busting open a beehive while moving pipe on a 105° day.) Josh also served as an occasional busboy at The Farmer's Daughter, the restaurant LaVonne ran until earlier this year. "I ate more than I bused," says Josh.

Like Allen, Wentz had been a late bloomer. As a freshman at Century High in Bismarck, N.D., Wentz stood 5'8" and weighed 125 pounds. He grew to 6'5" as a senior. An injury forced Wentz to play receiver, linebacker and safety as a junior, when his recruitment as a quarterback should have peaked. Like Allen, Wentz didn't play only football. In fact, his work as the glue guy on Century's state-champion basketball team as a senior helped pique the interest of North Dakota State's football coaches. His experiences with Wentz and Allen have reinforced Bohl's disdain for the quarterback-recruiting machine. "For all the dads out there who think they've got to shop their kids around from ninth grade on," Bohl says, "I think they're doing a disservice."

BECAUSE NEITHER Wentz nor Allen took the usual path, Vigen had to take a leap of faith with each. Most coaches prefer to see QBs throw in person, but since North Dakota State didn't offer Wentz until late in the process, the first time Vigen saw Wentz throw was at Wentz's first practice with the Bison. Vigen didn't learn about Allen until late in the 2014 season, when Cowboys assistant David Brown, who had gone to Reedley to watch another player, suggested Vigen take a peek at some video. Vigen didn't see Allen play in person, but he liked what he saw online. When Vigen finally saw the real thing, during Allen's first practice with the Cowboys, he knew he'd found something special.

On Nov. 16, 2012, then Reedley offensive coordinator Ernie Rodriguez attended the Firebaugh-Lindsay game. Lindsay crushed Firebaugh 41--10, but one of Allen's throws down the right sideline drew Rodriguez's eye. He saw Allen three times in '13, and each viewing further convinced him that he'd unearthed a gem. After an eight-hour recruiting pitch from Rodriguez, Josh bought in—junior college ball was his best chance to get noticed by a Division I program. Shortly after Allen began practicing at Reedley, he took a snap on the right hash mark and saw a receiver flash open to his left. "Here comes a laser," Rodriguez said as he stood with his receivers coach. Then Allen threw. In unison, both coaches said, "Oh, s---."

Rodriguez now calls those "typical Josh Allen throws."

By the time Allen reached Wyoming, his legs had caught up to his arm. During spring practice in 2015, he outran a safety. "I talked so much trash," Allen says. "I showed him the film three or four times a day for a week." The tortuga had wheels. Allen got his first chance to play when starter Cameron Coffman suffered a knee injury in a season-opening loss to North Dakota. The following week Allen took the field against Eastern Michigan—the only other school to offer him a scholarship out of Reedley. Allen's big chance lasted 13 plays, ending when he shattered his collarbone during a 24-yard run midway through the first quarter. "I didn't slide," Allen says. "[The bone] broke in about seven spots."

Allen, his parents and his coaches all call the injury a blessing—and not only because he spent some of his recovery time mastering card tricks he learned on YouTube. Those 13 plays had proved to Josh that he was Wyoming's best quarterback. He knew he'd be the starter in 2016 if he dedicated himself to mastering the offense and making the final adjustments to his body. Vigen watched as his quarterback transformed himself from an out-of-shape 215 to a solid 235. When Allen returned to the field, he used those legs to keep plays alive to give him time and space to throw.

In Wyoming's 30--28 win against Boise State last season, Allen felt the rush coming on a third-and-13 play and stepped up in the pocket. When it collapsed on him, he ran backward and then rolled right. Before he reached the sideline, he arced the ball over a defender's head and into the hands of leaping senior receiver Tanner Gentry for a 27-yard touchdown. On his next play he threaded the ball between two defenders to another senior receiver, Jake Maulhardt, for a two-point conversion to tie the score at 28 with 6:42 remaining.

Still, there are times when Allen relies too much on his legs and his arm to bail himself out. Bohl and Vigen spent the spring reminding him that he can't go wrong hitting his check downs. The "Oh, s---" throws can wait until the Cowboys need real magic. And taking fewer chances should raise Allen's completion percentage, which will help make him that top pick.

That's why Allen came back. He knows he can succeed at the next level if he allows himself to prepare properly. "I want to have a career in the NFL," he says. "It's not going anywhere. It's going to be there next year and the year after that. I don't want to be a guy that's in the league for three years and bounces around backup to backup to backup. I want to be a guy that a franchise can say, 'We want this kid. We're going to take him now, and he's going to be our future for the next 15 to 20 years.'"

This time next year some team will pick Allen's card. They'll be holding an ace.

"As soon as I made that decision, anxiety started running through my body," Allen says of his choice—later rescinded—to enter the draft. " I DIDN'T SLEEP ONE SECOND."

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https://www.footballstudyhall.com/2017/4/14/15299904/josh-allen-and-modern-qb-development-wyoming-cowboys-nfl-draft

It’s only a three-man rush but a nice throw and indicative of Allen’s vision and accuracy.

The next Wyoming drive was an absolute masterpiece of quarterbacking. Allen demonstrated a number of elite skills in the face of BYU’s high caliber pass rush and beat the Cougars in about every way you might wish for from your starting quarterback.

On this play BYU brought a Narduzzi-style zone blitz with three deep defenders, two “hot” route rats underneath, and six pass-rushers:

 

Allen_beats_6ZB.gif

 

The flare motion by the RB is ideal for threatening that field corner and Allen reads his response quickly before firing a perfect ball to Tanner Gentry in between the deep safety and the conflicted cornerback. He knows pressure is coming (though he has time) but he knows exactly what to look for and easily puts the ball on target.

Shortly after that success, Allen found himself facing third and 20 thanks to sack and he then demonstrated the kind of pocket presence, power, and arm strength that really draws in NFL scouts:

He treats oncoming Corbin Kaufusi, a 6’9” 285 pound monster, as a mere annoyance while firing a perfect strike to the sticks from an off-balance position. He finished the drive with this little number on a third and four:

Allen_escape_TD_lob.gif

 

That kind of improvisation is very difficult for college or pro defenses to handle but it’s made especially lethal by Allen’s running ability and the ease with which he can throw accurate balls down the field while on the move.

The game eventually ended when he took a misguided attempt to throw across his body into BYU’s cover 2 and was picked but there was a lot in this game that portends a very bright future for Allen both at Wyoming and at the next level.

 

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Nothing like dredging up a nearly year-old article about an also-ran... dumb as a bag of rocks... QB.

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Cal, after posting this thread... 

stan dad.jpg

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Just now, Tour2ma said:

Nothing like dredging up a nearly year-old article about an also-ran... dumb as a bag of rocks... QB.

*BING* And then he wakes up, it was only a dream.   :lol:

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https://www.foxsports.com/college-football/story/wyoming-football-is-josh-allen-a-sure-fire-franchise-quarterback-052617

College Production

While Josh Allen has only started 15 FBS college football games, he is considered by many to be one of the most pro-ready players in the 2018 class.

Unlike most college football teams that are obsessed with up-tempo, spread offenses based around run pass option plays and zone reads, Wyoming instead chooses to deploy a pro-style offense, that includes plays under center, and even a fullback. Yes, a fullback.

When reading any scouting report on Josh Allen, the one name that will always come up is Carson Wentz, and with good reason.

Both Allen and Wentz were recruited to their respective schools by coach Craig Bohl, both stand 6-foot-5 and both enter the NFL with experience in a pro-style offense.

Many top college offenses design plays to scheme open receivers and artificially inflate passing yards, but Wyoming  incorporates three, five and seven-step drops with more traditional passing concepts. Having experience in Bohl’s offense helped to elevate Carson’s status from a Division II quarterback with only 23 career starts to the second player selected in the 2016 NFL Draft, an experience I’m sure Josh Allen would like to emulate.

Unlike many of his peers, Josh Allen has actually called plays in a huddle. While most up-tempo offenses use large signs on the sideline to inform players what their individual responsibilities are on any given play, in Wyoming this responsibility is placed on Josh’s shoulders. While it does limit just how fast Wyoming is able to play on any given play, it does force Allen into a leadership role on the team, a role he has excelled in.

Not only do Allen’s teammates respect him as a leader, but so do his coaches.

Coach Bohl allows Josh to make adjustments at the line of scrimmage and put his team in the best position to succeed on any given play, based on the formation presented by the opposing defense. This skill is becoming increasingly rarer in NFL prospects, and greatly increases a player’s draft stock.

Simply put, college football doesn’t prepare players for the NFL like it used to.

Instead of teaching players the fundamentals of the game, college coaches are often using their players like chess pieces, putting them in the correct position to succeed and preventing them from having to think too much. Developing the ability to read and dissect a defense quickly is essential to be a modern-day NFL quarterback, and if a player can’t show that they have that skill upon being drafted, they may never develop the skill. Recent selections of players like Carson Wentz, Jared Goff, DeShone Keizer and Jameis Winston prove just how highly scouts value this skillset.

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"Since Josh Allen has already proven to scouts that he can read defenses, call plays and perform three, five and seven-step drops, he is leagues ahead of his peers, and is ultimately a much safer bet to have a successful pro career. "

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http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000917395/article/josh-allen-why-drafts-most-intriguing-qb-prospect-might-also-be-the-best

  • By Jeffri Chadiha
  • NFL.com Columnist
  • Published: Feb. 23, 2018 at 04:58 p.m.

Updated: Feb. 26, 2018 at 12:55 p.m.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This past fall, NFL.com went Back 2 Campus to tell the incredible stories of some of college football's brightest stars, profiling the players before they become household names. This is the 15th in a daily series leading up the scouting combine, where these players will gather and compete for their standing in the 2018 NFL Draft.

After all the praying, all the worrying and the constant dread of what might happen next in a whirlwind year, LaVonne Allen walked into the bedroom of her second-oldest child just over a year ago and waited for some reassuring news. It was there that she found her son, Josh, sitting in the dark, calmly reconsidering the most important decision of his life. Only two nights earlier, the Wyoming quarterback had told his family he was leaving school early to enter the NFL draft. He had delivered the news while surrounded by loved ones inside a Mexican restaurant near his hometown of Firebaugh, Calif., giddily dreaming about a bright future while his mother instinctively hid her concern.

Josh and his parents already had watched the College Football Playoff National Championship with high-profile agent Tom Condon sitting in their living room, a move that suggested how close Josh was to finding representation, as well as how high his stock had soared. Allen also had packed his bags for a trip to San Diego, where he would train with other draft prospects, including North Carolina's Mitch Trubisky and Iowa's C.J. Beathard, before attending the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. The more LaVonne watched all this unfold, the more she felt a haunting sensation gnawing at her soul. She kept telling herself this was all happening way too fast -- Josh had only spent one full year as the Cowboys' starter -- and she questioned if her son might pay a hefty price in the end.

That all changed the moment LaVonne ducked her head into that darkened room.

She knew that Josh, always regarded for his confidence and coolness, couldn't bring himself to break the news to Wyoming offensive coordinator Brent Vigen when the two had talked on the phone. There also was the fact that LaVonne and her husband, Joel, had raised Josh to be a man of his word and to reward loyalty. Wyoming had been the only FBS school to offer him a full scholarship. You'd better believe that meant plenty in their minds, as well.

When Josh turned to face his mother, she sensed all these factors were weighing on what would ultimately be her son's change of heart. She asked if he was OK with staying in school, and Josh nodded before saying, "I can't do this without you and dad. We're in this together." That's when something happened that, to this day, LaVonne knows was the most important sign in that entire process. For all the alleviation she experienced, she saw even more coming from a 20-year-old who was being touted as an elite quarterback prospect -- a potential first-round draft pick -- despite his lack of experience.

"When Josh said he was staying in school, you could feel the relief coming off him," LaVonne said. "At that point, you could see he was a kid again."

The upcoming draft, by most people's measure, will be defined by quarterbacks. There's the last two Heisman Trophy winners (Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield and Louisville's Lamar Jackson), a pair of dart-throwers from Los Angeles (UCLA's Josh Rosen and USC's Sam Darnold), and an assortment of All-America types (Oklahoma Stateâs Mason Rudolph, Washington State's Luke Falk and Western Kentucky's Mike White). Even with all that star power, Allen might be the most intriguing NFL prospect of the bunch. He was the late bloomer who came from nowhere, the one who led a program that has rarely risen to national prominence and living a dream that could end with him being some team's franchise quarterback.

It would've been easy for Allen, who turns 22 in May, to enter last year's draft because the buzz was building so quickly. Instead, he chose the more mature route, one he hopes pays even bigger dividends in a few months.

It's not difficult to see what scouts like about him. At 6-foot-5 and 237 pounds, he has a cannon for a right arm, impressive mobility and an attractive blend of intelligence, resilience and guts. Add in the fact he's been forced to fight for every last bit of respect he's received and there's a chip-on-the-shoulder dimension that will help him at the next level, as well. If you think that doesn't matter, just consider what being overlooked did for Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers.

In 2016, Allen threw for 3,203 yards with 28 touchdown passes and 15 interceptions. He also led Wyoming, a team that was picked to finish last in the Mountain West's Mountain Division, to an 8-6 record, a spot in the conference championship game and a berth in the school's first bowl game in five years. Last season, he led the Cowboys to an 8-5 record and a win over Central Michigan in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. However, his numbers were down.; he threw for 1,812 yards with 16 touchdown passes and six interceptions.

"I watched him when he was considering coming out," one NFL personnel director said before Wyoming kicked off its season vs. Iowa. "He's a talented passer with an elite arm, good size, toughness and competitiveness. But he also showed poor ball security, inconsistent mechanics and he needed to improve his accuracy. I didn't think he was ready."

Allen wanted to enjoy another successful season, but he also returned to school because of his faith in the preparation he would receive. After all, Wyoming head coach Craig Bohl once discovered a raw, overlooked quarterback named Carson Wentz while at North Dakota State. Wentz, of course, became the second overall pick of the 2016 NFL Draft. The Eagles QB already has informed Allen about the benefits of his college offense -- "He told me it really trains you to be a quarterback in the NFL," Allen said -- and the Wyoming signal-caller is smart enough to see the success Wentz has enjoyed in Philadelphia. Unlike the spread systems that proliferate college football and ease the burdens on young field generals, the Cowboys' offense asks the quarterback to handle protection calls, checks at the line of scrimmage and other adjustments.

The lack of support around him could be a big reason Allen's numbers took a hit last season. He led a younger offense that lost some productive starters, particularly running back Brian Hill (drafted by Atlanta in the fifth round last year) and wide receiver Tanner Gentry (undrafted free agent signed by Chicago).

"The best decision Josh has made in his life was to return to Wyoming," said George Whitfield, the noted quarterback guru who has trained current pros like Cam Newton and Jameis Winston -- and who worked with Allen last summer. "Understanding an offense is big because you can't run an NFL offense if you don't have ownership of your college system. ... Believe me when I say that there hasn't been a talent like this come out of college football since Cam Newton. I try to be conservative in my thoughts about Josh, but that's the truth."

The most common question Allen has answered more than any other is an obvious one: How come so many people missed on him? It's not like he didn't have talent, ambition or heart. As Joel Allen said, "From the time he was little, everything he did was impressive. I don't care if he was playing soccer or baseball or doing something with the swim team -- he was determined to be the best."

When Josh was 6 years old, he had to swim a 25-meter final in a local meet against a kid who was three times his size. Guess what? He kicked his butt. Playing on a youth football team that would win just once, he was sacked nine times in a single game. How did he respond? By getting up after every play, readjusting himself and doing his best to keep making smart decisions and tough throws.

Bill Magnusson, Allen's coach at Firebaugh High, watched Josh that day and pulled him aside afterwards. Magnusson promised the diminutive eighth-grader things would improve at the high school level, that the offensive line would be better, as would the skill players and the coaching. Magnusson saw a kid with a big heart and plenty of potential. Unfortunately for Allen, nobody outside of that town had the same kind of vision.

Allen did become a local star in Firebaugh, an agricultural community of roughly 7,500 people located 40 miles from Fresno. He was a standout quarterback, the leading scorer on the basketball team, a pitcher with a 90 mph fastball and a stellar student who served as the president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Most athletes with that list of accomplishments can find at least one school interested in paying for their education. After throwing for 5,269 yards and 59 touchdowns in his final two years, the only thing Allen kept hearing from college recruiters was that, at 6-2 and 180 pounds, he wasn't big enough.

Even when he went to Fresno State on an informal visit prior to his senior year, the response he received was deflating.

"We needed a quarterback to replace Derek Carr at the time," said former Fresno State assistant coach David Brown II, who now works as the defensive coordinator at Texas A&M-Kingsville. "And our head coach (Tim DeRuyter) liked everything about Josh except his stature."

It also didn't help that Allen played in relative obscurity. Firebaugh is a Division 5 school in the Central Valley of California, which makes it one of the tiniest programs in the state. LaVonne and Joel did their best to create some exposure for Josh -- by arranging sessions with personal trainers and taking him to various football camps around the state -- but nothing mattered. College coaches simply couldn't see the potential in a skinny kid with a live arm and enough generosity of spirit that he often drove teammates to summer drills in 100-degree heat.

"I kept telling people that he may not have hair on his face at 18 years old," Magnusson said. "But if you have a little bit of vision, then you'll like what you'll see when he's 20."

Added Allen: "That was tough. I had to decide if I was going to try a junior college or walk on somewhere. I even thought about changing sports. But I eventually decided that football was my passion."

In time, Allen reached the point where attending a junior college made the most sense. The Fresno State coaches actually encouraged him to go that route to improve his size and skills. A year later -- after throwing for 2,055 yards and 26 touchdown passes at nearby Reedley College -- Allen had done just that. A late growth spurt pushed his height to 6-5 and his weight had jumped to around 215 pounds.

As fate would have it, Wyoming also was playing at Fresno State that 2014 season, and Brown -- who had joined the Cowboys staff under Bohl -- was recruiting the area before the game. When Brown went to Reedley College looking for defensive end prospects, a coach told him to check out Allen.

"I thought he had walked on somewhere (at an FBS school)," said Brown, who joined the Wyoming staff before Allen decided to go to junior college. "When I saw him again, he was three inches taller, had put on more weight and he had that big arm. At that point, there was definitely a place for him in the Mountain West."

Bohl spoke to Josh and his parents inside their Firebaugh home in December 2014. He was the only college head coach to ever visit their house and they had pulled Josh's two younger siblings (the Allens have four children) out of school early to be ready for the occasion. Joel and LaVonne wanted Bohl to see exactly the kind of family Josh came from, just to sweeten the appeal. When Bohl told them how he envisioned Josh as the face of his program at Wyoming, it seemed as if everything had fallen into place.

Josh being Josh, he played it cool. LaVonne wept instantly. Joel, on the other hand, was yawning occasionally, until LaVonne confronted him later; he admitted to trying to hold back his own tears. "When Coach Bohl was in my living room, he was really sincere and straight to the point," Josh said. "He was adamant about turning around the program and he wanted me to a be a big part of that. He said they had gone everywhere looking for a quarterback and he told them (Josh's parents), 'We want your son.' "

"I could feel the value system in that house when I walked in there," Bohl said. "It was the All-American story. Here's a farm kid with a mom and dad working hard and a close-knit family. When you looked in Josh's eyes, and considered everything he had gone through, you saw greatness."

Allen opened his first year at Wyoming as the backup to Cameron Coffman in 2015. He started the Cowboys' second game that year after Coffman sustained a knee injury in the season opener. It appeared destiny was finally working in Allen's favor, given how long he'd waited for such an opportunity. That was before the 13th offensive play of that game against Eastern Michigan, when a defender tackled him at the end of a 24-yard run and snapped his collarbone in seven places.

Allen was devastated by the injury -- "I didn't leave my dorm room for two weeks," he said -- but there was a silver lining in the setback. Once he got over his disappointment, he used his spare time to study the Cowboys offense on video. He went through mental reps while watching practice and he hit the weight room relentlessly. By the start of the 2016 season, he was tipping the scales at 233 pounds and telling all his teammates to prepare for a run at a conference championship.

Bohl already had seen something special in Allen, but the QB showed even more talent when he returned from the injury. "I wasn't just seeing the ball when he let it go," Bohl said. "I could hear it coming out of his hand." That arm strength was on display when Allen threw for 274 yards and three touchdowns during a 30-28 win over Boise State in 2016. Along with leading Wyoming back from a 21-7 deficit, he produced what has become the signature moment of his career: a 27-yard touchdown pass to Gentry that tied the score at 28 in the fourth quarter, resulting from Allen scrambling out of the pocket, evading two defenders and rifling the ball 45 yards in the air to his receiver in the back of the end zone.

That victory was the first Wyoming had ever enjoyed over Boise State in 11 tries. It also unleashed a celebration that ended with Cowboys fans rushing the field and ushering in the very change in culture that Bohl had wanted Allen to lead. In the midst of the chaos, Allen pushed through the crowd to find LaVonne still filming the mayhem from the stands. He called for her to join him and she somehow forced her way toward her son.

After that point, everything began to change for Allen. "People would come up to us and ask if he was coming back to school," LaVonne said. "At first, we were thinking to ourselves, 'Why wouldn't he?' But after about the eighth and ninth games of the season, we got it. It was like a wildfire."

As hard as it was for Allen's parents to handle the onslaught of agents and financial advisors, it was just as critical for Josh to make sense of what he wanted. There already was another quarterback entering the draft after only one season of action, Trubisky, whom analysts were touting as a lock for the first round (the Chicago Bears ultimately selected him second overall). If scouts weren't that concerned about Trubisky's level of experience, then they probably wouldn't have held Allen's against him, either. On top of all that, Allen had dreamed about being an NFL quarterback since the moment he first picked up a football.

What ultimately kept him in school was the realization there was still more work to do in college. Vigen specifically mentioned Wyoming's second game of the 2016 season -- a 52-17 loss at Nebraska that included six turnovers by Allen, including five interceptions -- as an example of where his quarterback could improve.

"He learned some hard lessons that day," Vigen said. "We were down seven going into the fourth quarter and he really imploded. He learned that he can't do it all by himself. There are no 14-point plays out there."

Allen also gained plenty of comfort in knowing there was more time to make all these important life choices. His family had a better feel about choosing an agent this time around, vetting financial advisors and going through interviews with reporters. The time Allen spent with Whitfield was also beneficial, as were the chats he's had with Wentz.

Today, Josh Allen and Darnold are roommates in San Clemente, Calif., where they are training with former NFL quarterback Jordan Palmer. He has an entire state following his every move, as well as several QB-needy teams who are trying to figure out if he is truly a transcendent player. He relishes the responsibility that comes with that, along with what it could mean in two months at the draft.

"I've talked to a lot of different people," said Allen, whose performance at the Senior Bowl (9-of-13 for 158 yards and two TDs) in January started to alleviate some concerns scouts had about his accuracy and touch, and confirmed his rocket arm. "And I came to the conclusion that if I want to have a 15-year playing career (in the NFL), I need to do everything possible to prepare for that."

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Such heartwarming stories about Josh- it almost brought a tear to my eyes....  

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Here are some stats to think about when mesmerized by his big arm- Josh Allen had only FOUR games with 2+ TD passes in 2017. The opponents? The combined 9-37 forces of Texas State, New Mexico, Central Michigan and Gardner-Webb (whatever that is). Outside of Central Michigan, the other three schools COMBINED have four players active in the NFL today. CMU has a good player once in a while - they have 8 in the NFL, including Antonio Brown.

So, if we were to remove those four games against abysmal talent, his stats against non-miserable competition would be:

89/167 (53.3%) for 877 yards and 4 TD with 6 picks. In seven games. With the most passing yards at 208 in ANY game. 125 yards a game passing against quality competition.

 

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Since we have been giving PoG a hard time for going on and on, should we here with CaC.

PS- I like Allen, he would be my 2nd choice if I were choosing, and I certainly like him more at 1 than Superman.

 

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Anyone who read all what Cal wrote on this thread should be paid... It's up to an hour of hard work. 

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A big armed inaccurate QB coming out of college 

I and the Browns made this mistake with Kizer let’s not do it again. I won’t be. 

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4 hours ago, Nero said:

Anyone who read all what Cal wrote on this thread should be paid... It's up to an hour of hard work. 

If you think this is delusional, try that "other" board.:lol:

EDIT: And is there any truth to the rumor that Wyoming really is the mythical "deep state"?:P:ph34r:

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2 hours ago, Nero said:

Anyone who read all what Cal wrote on this thread should be paid... It's up to an hour of hard work. 

You should come visit us over on the Pol Board. All of the threads are short, to the point, and stay on topic. 

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8 hours ago, calfoxwc said:

"Since Josh Allen has already proven to scouts that he can read defenses, call plays and perform three, five and seven-step drops, he is leagues ahead of his peers, and is ultimately a much safer bet to have a successful pro career. "

His throws are effortless.

Like throwing darts. He has great mobility but needs to work on footwork.

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4 hours ago, Nero said:

Anyone who read all what Cal wrote on this thread should be paid... It's up to an hour of hard work. 

Thanks Cal for providing all this info.

I read it all.

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24 minutes ago, boo fagley said:

Thanks Cal for providing all this info.

I read it all.

So how are things going for you guys down on the "ward" anyway? :lol:

 

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2 hours ago, LondonBrown said:

A big armed inaccurate QB coming out of college 

I and the Browns made this mistake with Kizer let’s not do it again. I won’t be. 

Browns fans have seen this movie a few times and it sucks. 

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Have no fear, those with frail heart, (and TexVag with frail mind), Allen has the highest upside.

So he has stuff to work on - so does every one of the qb's in this draft. He doesn't throw like Kizer or wheedumb.

He throws like nobody else - and he IS a ***Football*** player. I assume, and have read by experts in listening to experts, lol,

that footwork is far easier to coach/fix than delivery. And even TexAggrated knows that you can't fix stupid, he suffers from it.

   Coaches like Norv Turner know better than any of us - and here is what he said about fixing a qb's accuracy:

http://www.sportingnews.com/ca/nfl/news/norv-turner-carolina-panthers-offense-cam-newton-accuracy/h8e2suhs97i19wf0pmrb7ebi

Published on Jan. 23, 2018

And help for the quarterback is exactly what Carolina needs. One of Newton’s biggest knocks against him has been his accuracy issues, which Turner says can be fixed more ways than one.

"I think there’s some technical things in the drop, in the vision, where you’re looking, when you’re looking that we can help and get the ball out quicker," Turner said. "We can help with his accuracy and then continue to find the things he does best and let him do those."

      Hey, it's good to read - you learn stuff. Well, except for TexAgg - he has serious trouble with that.

Oh, and just for Tour:

about this article - note the date, your heinous.

When the Panthers hired Norv Turner as their new offensive coordinator, they did so with the idea that he could inject some life into Cam Newton’s career and Carolina’s offense.

While there are plenty of improvements to make to a unit that has lacked consistency over recent seasons, Turner, in an interview for the team’s official website, said there’s a lot that can be built upon."To be successful in this league, I think it’s proven that you have to be able to run the ball," Turner said Monday. “Whether it's a power run or a finesse run, you need to be able to run the football.

"If you can do that, it makes life a lot easier on the quarterback; it helps your defense, it helps your team."

And help for the quarterback is exactly what Carolina needs. One of Newton’s biggest knocks against him has been his accuracy issues, which Turner says can be fixed more ways than one.

"I think there’s some technical things in the drop, in the vision, where you’re looking, when you’re looking that we can help and get the ball out quicker," Turner said. "We can help with his accuracy and then continue to find the things he does best and let him do those."

Getting the ball out quicker is one way the Panthers have tried to help their quarterback, and it was one of the principals that led to the team drafting running back Christian McCaffrey in the first round of last years' draft.

McCaffrey and a reliable target like Greg Olsen are keys to what Turner wants to do and will help with the transition to the new offense.

"He had an unbelievable rookie year and did a lot more than a lot of people would be asked to do and handled them all," Turner said of McCaffrey. "He lined up everywhere you could line up, which is hard for a rookie.

"He’s got such talent, you’re just going to keep finding ways to get him the ball and try to create more space for him."

Turner also mentioned receivers Devin Funchess and Curtis Samuel as players who already have a solid base of talent to improve upon, and they will have opportunities to fill vital roles in the offense. The key for them will be utilizing their speed and getting the ball into their hands.

Although the broad offensive philosophy won't be drastically changing, the new ideas coming in with Turner could be just what Carolina’s offense needs to push it over the top and provide some much-needed consistency.

Jblewrosen and TexAggravated can't keep their forums straight. Limited vision and short term memory problems?

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3 hours ago, jbluhm86 said:

You should come visit us over on the Pol Board. All of the threads are short, to the point, and stay on topic. 

I am hispanic, catholic and I read a lot about History.  I know I would fit perfectly there, but I'll pass.

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3 minutes ago, Nero said:

I am hispanic, catholic and I read a lot about History.  I know I would fit perfectly there, but I'll pass.

I'd give up a 2nd, a 3rd, and a first round pick next year if you'd come and replace jblew. He doesn't know anything about anything.

 

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Thanks Cal for you post.  I really appreciate your highlighting (in Bold Red) the updated stats above.  As you know, I've been pushing for either Allen or Darnold as my favorites (but Allen first).  I also see you posted they were roommates above, nice.  I'll be a Browns fan regardless of whether they pick one of these QBs at 1, but it would make my day if they do.  Let Taylor start the first 2 years so they can learn, then bring that QB in.  **Something Kizer never got**  * (Sorry Dawg fans, just what I believe). 

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49 minutes ago, Nero said:

I am hispanic, catholic and I read a lot about History.  I know I would fit perfectly there, but I'll pass.

You would be welcome if you MAGA.

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27 minutes ago, dawg2fan said:

Thanks Cal for you post.  I really appreciate your highlighting (in Bold Red) the updated stats above.  As you know, I've been pushing for either Allen or Darnold as my favorites (but Allen first).  I also see you posted they were roommates above, nice.  I'll be a Browns fan regardless of whether they pick one of these QBs at 1, but it would make my day if they do.  Let Taylor start the first 2 years so they can learn, then bring that QB in.  **Something Kizer never got**  * (Sorry Dawg fans, just what I believe). 

Exactly right.

Taylor is the guy playing this season unless he is lying in the hospital. The 1 or 4 pick will see limited regular season action and not be thrown to the wolves in his first NFL season. Barkley is there at 1 and Allen will be there at 4. You can win now and prepare for the future when Allen is ready.

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2 hours ago, TexasAg1969 said:

So how are things going for you guys down on the "ward" anyway? :lol:

 

Things are great over in the Allen camp.

How is it over at the Rosen camp? Did he get his gold jacket yet?

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3 hours ago, boo fagley said:

Thanks Cal for providing all this info.

I read it all.

Boo so how much black coffee did you drink, really? :blink:

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30 minutes ago, boo fagley said:

You would be welcome if you MAGA.

Make A Good Accent?

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