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Draft Spotlight - Day 17: Matt Barkley

Posted Apr 9, 2013

We spotlight the Pac-12's leader in career-passing yards and TDs

The 2013 NFL Draft Spotlight series continues, as we preview one pro prospect per day, right up until the start of the draft, April 25-27. However, none of the reports in this series are indicative of who the Kansas City Chiefs plan to draft, with any of their currently-owned eight picks.

Day 17 of 32

Matt Barkley is very quick to admit two things; he does not regret deciding to return to USC for his senior season and two, he disagrees with those who say he doesn't have a strong enough arm to compete in the NFL.

Following a spectacular 2011 season, when Barkley started all 12 games, going 308-of-446 (69.1%) for 3,528 yards with 39 TDs and seven INTs, he opted to pass up the NFL for one more season on campus.

In 2012, the one-time Heisman Trophy contender was sidelined after suffering a sprained right shoulder injury, during a Nov. 17 USC loss to UCLA. He didn't take another snap for USC and ended the season with 3,273-passing yards and 36 TDs, becoming the Pac-12 leader for career-passing yards (12,327) and TDs (116).

Barkley's injury kept him from throwing at the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine, but he later showcased his talents during USC's Pro Day, completing 55-of-60 attempts on the day.

What else should you know about Matt?

* He set a USC-record with 47 starts over four seasons, becoming the Pac-12 leader in TDs, yards passing, completions and total offense.

* His 39 TD passes in 2011 broke Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart's Pac-12 and USC season record and were third most in the nation.

* His 69.1% completion percentage in 2011 broke Rob Johnson's 18-year-old USC season record.

* His 308 completions in 2011 tied for second on the USC season list (one shy of Heisman Trophy winner Carson Palmer's 2002 record of 309).

* He threw for more than 300 yards six times in 2011 (including twice over 400 yards).

* He threw for at least four TD passes in five games during the 2011 season.

* He was one of 11 FBS players named to the 2011 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team, recognized for their commitment to making a difference in their communities.


STRENGTHS:


"If you need someone to step in immediately," said one quarterbacks coach, who attended Barkley's workout," he's your man. He's mature, he's experienced and he played in a pro system for four years. He handled himself so well at 'SC, and when things didn't go right he never pointed a finger. He's not going to be a bust."


QUESTIONS:

ESPN NFL's DraftTracker graded Barkley below average in three categories:

Height-Weight-Speed - "Lacks prototypical NFL QB measurable. Shorter than ideal with only adequate bulk and an underwhelming physique. Top-end speed is below average."

Durability - citing injuries, including the shoulder injury that ended Barkley's season in 2012

Release/Arm Strength - "Arm strength is adequate. Does not have prototypical capabilities to drive the ball and stretch the field vertically. However, did show ability to make all the necessary NFL type throws including getting good velocity on deep out throws from opposite hash."


Name: Matt Barkley
Position:  QB
Height: 6'2
Weight: 227
College: USC
Hometown:  Newport Beach, CA
Age: 22

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