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Seahawks Scouting: More on QB Josh Portis

As Chris Sullivan and Danny O'Neil pointed out, Josh Portis was a guy that was on the Seahawks' radar during the draft and may still be once rookie free agency starts. With the possibility that Portis could be Hawks UDFA signing, I thought I'd pass a little bit of information on about the QB out of California (PA). 

Portis is 6'3, 211 and ran a 4.62 in the forty. He had a 4.12 20 yard shuttle (very good), a 10'12" broad jump (very good) and a 6.84 3-cone drill (very good). So he's a (very good) athlete in case you were wondering.Here's what his NFL Combine page has to say about him:

"Portis flashes the physical tools of a developmental NFL quarterback prospect but is raw, will face a jump in competition level, and has character flags. As a passer, has adequate arm strength but will likely struggle to zip balls into tight windows at the next level. Stands in the pocket allowing receivers time to break open but does not possess the accuracy to consistently hit his targets and doesn't make enough correct reads. Can be productive when the play breaks down, buying time or picking up yardage with his legs. Portis will likely be available as a rookie free agent."


Portis possesses a nice combination of NFL size and impressive speed for a quarterback. Stands tall in the pocket. Has enough arm strength to make all the necessary throws at the next level. Displays a high, over-the-top release. Capable of climbing the pocket. Can pick up chunks of yards with his legs."


Must improve his ability to read defensive coverages and run through his progressions. Needs to do a better job of settling for checkdowns. Overall accuracy and footwork are not adequate. Likely unable to fit the ball into tight spots in the NFL. Multiple off-field issues (legal, two transfers) which must be investigated."

Here are some blurbs from CBSSports blog on Portis (check the site for much more detail):

"In two seasons, Portis completed 58 percent of his passes for 6,072 yards, 69 touchdowns against only 16 interceptions and led the Vulcans to the postseason twice."

"Portis is clearly a developmental prospect, but he has the size, arm strength and mobility to warrant a strong look. He can buy time with his feet, but prefers to pass the ball despite possessing excellent straight-line speed. Portis has a similar skill set to Minnesota Vikings 2010 rookie QB/WR Joe Webb, and could make a team look similarly smart if given an opportunity."

"Positives: Good height. Quick feet and balance to elude in the pocket. Rare straight-line speed for the position. Excellent mobility for the rollout and shows at least moderate accuracy when on the move. Possesses an over-the-top release and good follow-through. At least moderate accuracy to all levels. Has the arm for the deep ball. Throws the bomb with good touch and trajectory so it's an easy ball to catch. Can zip the ball between closing defenders for the slant and post. Voted a two-time team captain. Good bloodlines; cousin to Washington Redskins running back Clinton Portis.

Negatives: Transferred from Florida to Maryland to California, leading some to question whether he has the work ethic to handle competition. May struggle with a complicated playbook, as he has had some struggles with academics. Questionable competition. Floats many of his passes, showing only marginal accuracy overall. Capable of hitting his man, but isn't often enough able to hit them in stride. Has to do a better job of looking off the safety. Too often stares down his primary target."

So as you can see he sort of fits the mold as a Pete Carroll type of QB - mobile, big, can sit in the pocket but also move around a little if need-be. Interestingly enough, he's compared to Minnesota QB Joe Webb above, a guy that current Seahawk Offensive Coordinator surely had a hand in drafting when he was previously with the Vikings. Overall he has intriguing high-upside potential if given some time to develop. If he is indeed signed once the lockout ends he'll have a chance in camp to prove his place on the roster.

Here's the only highlight video of Portis I could find. It's not great, but gives you a little bit of an idea how he plays.

Also, here's an interview with Portis brought to us by Optimum Scouting.

In the interview, Eric Galko also compares Portis to Joe Webb and points out that Webb played QB in college, was drafted into the NFL as a WR, then ended up playing QB again for the Vikings. He asks Portis if he'd be open to the idea of playing receiver given the fact he's 6'3 211 and can move so well. Portis answers that ultimately he's open to doing what's best for the team but he would like to get his chance at the quarterback position. Anyway you look at it, it would be an exciting signing and he'd be a guy to watch in camp.