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C.J. Stroud 2023 NFL Draft Profile

C.J. Stroud NFL Draft Profile: The prolific Ohio State passer is set to be a top-10 pick in this year's draft.
C.J. Stroud NFL Draft

C.J. Stroud NFL Draft Overview

Position: Quarterback
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 218 pounds
School: Ohio State

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C.J. Stroud 2023 NFL Draft Profile

The C.J. Stroud era at Ohio State started off a little rocky but once it was all said and done, Stroud will be the latest in an ever-growing streak of first-round quarterbacks developed by Ohio State and Ryan Day.

After filling the shoes of Justin Fields, all Stroud did was throw for 8,123 yards and 85 touchdowns in his two years in Columbus. Additionally, he was a two-time Heisman Trophy finalist, finishing fourth and third in voting in his two years, respectively. Stroud is the first Big Ten quarterback to finish with 40+ touchdowns in back-to-back seasons and nearly willed his Buckeyes to victory in the CFP Semifinal.

From the jump, it was obvious that Stroud had an elite touch to the ball and at least possessed the athleticism to make plays when needed. To get perspective, Stroud finished with the second-most career passing yards, has the second and third-most single-season passing yards, and owns the records for most passing yards in a single game (573 vs Utah in the Rose Bowl) which is the only instance of an Ohio State quarterback passing for over 500. He’s also second all-time in touchdowns and is the only Buckeye quarterback to throw for six touchdowns in three separate games (2021 Michigan State, 2021 Utah, 2022 Michigan State).

Stroud’s legacy is a clouded one in Columbus, however. He has all of the counting stats, but failed to beat Michigan and never won the Big Ten. Admittedly, neither loss was on his shoulders as he played well enough to win and the defense was atrocious in both, but nuance is lost when talking about The Game. Stroud heads to the NFL with high expectations and an even higher ceiling.


  • Elite touch
  • Pinpoint accuracy, can make any throw
  • Broke out at age 19
  • Can command any offense
  • Elite instincts
  • Good arm strength
  • Improved footwork and decision-making
  • Natural thrower of the ball
  • Reads through progressions well
  • Sneaky-good athleticism


  • Rarely uses that sneaky-good athleticism
  • Can get rattled which speeds up his internal clock
  • Quiet leader
  • Weapons merchant?

NFL Comparison: Joe Burrow

Projection: Top 10

Best Fit: Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Las Vegas Raiders, Carolina Panthers

Bottom Line on C.J. Stroud

Plain and simple, C.J. Stroud is an elite quarterback and thrower of the football. Don’t let the Ohio State quarterbacks narrative fool you, Stroud is nothing like Dwayne Haskins, Justin Fields, or J.T. Barrett, for that matter. Stroud is the guy an NFL team would want leading their offense if they want an elite thrower with ridiculous accuracy. The best part of Stroud’s game is his ability to fit the ball into windows that seem impossible.

Stroud is a quiet leader, however. He’s not the rah-rah, get-in-your-face, lead-a-pregame-chant-type ala Drew Brees. However, he’s able to pick apart defenses surgically, can hit receivers in stride anywhere on the field, and possesses the capability to take off and run. If you had only watched Stroud in 2022, you would have no idea that his first-career touchdown came on a 48-yard touchdown run.

That’s the most frustrating thing about Stroud, however. He has shown and teased his ability to take off and create out of structure, he just never used it. That was, of course, until the CFP Semifinal against Georgia where he ran the ball 12 times for 34 yards. His career high was against Northwestern in hurricane-force winds where he ran for 76 yards. If defenses commit to rattling Stroud early and often, they can take him off of his game despite his ability to run.

Stroud is always looking for the play. Most of his sacks were due to holding the ball a tad too long, looking for the downfield shot rather than stepping up and taking the free 15 yards of green grass. Additionally, Stroud had a phenomenal offensive line and had (at the very least) four or five first-round talents to throw to. How will he respond when his weapons take a downgrade?

Overall, Stroud is still an elite quarterback. He’s not as flashy as some, but he’s not nearly as big of a risk as others. Stoud is safe. For a team looking for stability with a high upside, Stroud is your guy.

Main Image: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY


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