Malik Willis can be a superstar
Gambling on traits has worked out for so many teams in recent drafts. The Bills and Chiefs traded up for project quarterbacks that are now clearly top-five quarterbacks in the NFL while consistently meeting in the playoffs. The Ravens moved up to land Lamar Jackson despite having Joe Flacco under contract and made it work.
The one quarterback in 2022 that can pay off at that level is Malik Willis – and that upside has to be worth every risk for the Minnesota Vikings after years of mediocrity. Willis has an absolute cannon of a right arm and his ability to create with his legs is nearly on par with Lamar Jackson.
He can heave the long ball with ease, a simple flick of the wrist is all it takes to push the ball down the field. A lot of his big plays in the passing game come through the middle of the field on deep posts that Willis can put behind the safety.
Willis loves to go after the home run shot – albeit sometimes a little too much – but the successful attempts make it worth it. Against a mixed bag of competition, Willis was pretty much the same guy. He racked up yards and took his chances down the field but turnovers were prevalent.
In a league that lives through the unicorn quarterbacks, there are plenty of reasons to fall in love with Malik. He can toss it from one side of the field to the other sideline on a rope for an easy score. If that doesn’t work, Willis can take off as a runner and make defenders miss in space.
He presents an exciting combination of flare as a passer and burst as a runner that will make teams pay if they pass him up. For the Minnesota Vikings, everything else is set up for a young quarterback to have some immediate success at a much cheaper cap hit.
Willis is not the perfect player. The potential of a bust is certainly there, but that should not scare teams away from him in the first round.