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Jake Fromm has led Georgia to back-to-back SEC East titles.

ESPN, NFL draft expert expect Jake Fromm to be one of the top players in 2020 NFL Draft

The 2019 NFL Draft is scheduled for this week, with the first round starting on Thursday. Georgia football is only expected to have one first-round pick in cornerback Deandre Baker. But the 2020 draft class may prove to look more like Georgia’s 2018 draft class, where four Bulldogs were taken in the first 35 picks.

Related: Projecting the best fits for the Georgia football players in the 2019 NFL Draft

The likes of D’Andre Swift, Andrew Thomas and Jake Fromm will all be draft eligible and figure to be high draft picks. There’s also a couple of members from the Georgia secondary in J.R. Reed and Eric Stokes who could hear their names early on draft day in 2020.

But which name will be first? Many seem to think it would be Thomas, given that he might be the best left tackle in the country. Players of Thomas’ caliber are rare nowadays, and it’s easy to see why he could become a top-10 pick.

Thomas has started 28 games in his first two seasons at Georgia and earned First Team All-SEC honors as a sophomore.

But ESPN gave a different, and perhaps more controversial answer: Writer Alex Scarborough said Georgia’s best future draft prospect is actually Fromm.

“What he lacks in flash, he more than makes up for in substance. Just look at how he carved up Alabama’s defense in the SEC championship game,” Scarborough said. He’s accurate, with a career completion percentage of roughly 65 percent, and his touchdown-to-interception ratio (54-to-13, so, better than 4-to-1) is out of this world.

“In an NFL that still values the prototypical pocket passer, Fromm fits the bill.”

Scarborough is hardly the first person to be high on Fromm’s NFL potential. This past week, ESPN NFL draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. said he expects Fromm to be a first round pick, albeit probably not the No. 1 overall pick.

“My comp for him would be Drew Brees,” Kiper said. “Drew Brees’ arm got stronger once he got in the NFL with the Chargers and the Saints. Jake Fromm will probably go a little higher than that.”

Brees was taken in the second round of the 2002 draft and gone one to be one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the position.

Fromm isn’t the only quarterback who is expected to be drafted in the first round of the 2020 draft. Kiper had Oregon’s Justin Herbert as his No. 1 quarterback for the 2019 draft class back prior to Herbert electing to return for his senior season.

There’s also Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. As a sophomore, the Alabama star threw for 43 touchdowns to just 6 interceptions and finished second in Heisman Trophy voting. And many have pointed out that Tagovailoa’s arm strength and athleticism are superior to Fromm’s.

Related: UGA fans shouldn’t read too much into Jake Fromm’s G-Day performance

But one respected NFL draft analyst would actually prefer Fromm to Tagovailoa. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report made the argument that Fromm’s pre-snap ability and durability are big positives working in his favor.

“I’m higher on Jake Fromm. I honestly am. I love Tua. I love watching Tua play, but with him, I worry about arm strength a little bit. I worry about how long he holds the ball in the pocket,” Miller said on the SDS podcast. “Obviously being banged up this year made it tough to get a good evaluation of him because by the time I really started watching not just to enjoy the game or to break down the college aspect of it, he was hurt. It was hard to watch. They’re almost polar opposites.”

Tagovailoa did get injured multiple times during the course of the 2018 season. He was actually knocked out of the SEC championship game against Georgia. While Alabama ended up winning that game, Fromm pretty clearly outplayed Tagovailoa in the game. Fromm threw for 301 yards and 3 touchdown passes, while Tagovailoa was intercepted twice.

Miller provided a deeper breakdown of Fromm’s attributes.

“Jake Fromm is almost more of a game manager. He beats you with his mind and he’s really accurate. I got a chance to watch him in person against LSU, which was probably the worst game he’s ever played in his life, but then he bounced back so well the week after. That was really big to me.

“You’re never going to watch him and be like, ‘Oh my God, he has a great arm or he’s this fantastic athlete.’ But he’s so smart, and he’s so poised and he can beat you in a lot of different ways.”

Miller added that if he had to rank the quarterbacks in 2020 right now, he would put Fromm ahead of both Tagovailoa and Herbert. The last time Georgia had a quarterback taken in the first round was in the 2009 NFL Draft, when the Detroit Lions selected Matthew Stafford with the No. 1 overall pick. Georgia has had four No. 1 overall picks in the history of the NFL draft. Only USC and Notre Dame have had more.

Fromm and the Bulldogs will open the 2019 season on Aug. 31 when they take on the Vanderbilt Commodores.

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