Bears fifth-round pick scouting report: QB Nathan Enderle, Idaho

Posted April 30, 2011 @ 3:34 p.m.
Posted By PFW staff

The Bears drafted a quarterback with their fifth-round choice, taking Idaho's Nathan Enderle with the 160th overall pick. Enderle is considered a project prospect and he could become the third-string quarterback behind Jay Cutler and perhaps Caleb Hanie, who was tendered by the Bears and is due to become a restricted free agent. Here is PFW draft expert Nolan Nawrocki's scouting report on Enderle from the 2011 Draft Preview book:

Notes: Also played basketball and baseball and ran track as a Nebraska prep. Graduated high school early to enroll at Idaho and redshirted in 2006. Stepped into the lineup in ’07 when he started all 10 games in which he played and completed 132-of-298 pass attempts (44.3 percent) for 1,787 yards with 10 touchdowns and 18 interceptions. Missed three games after rupturing a tendon in his right (throwing) hand against Hawaii. Started all 12 games in ’08, tossing 184-339-2,077-20-17 (54.3). In ’09, started all 11 games in which he played and completed 192-312-2,906-22-9 (61.5). Suffered a right (throwing) rotator cuff tear against Louisiana Tech and missed two games. Started all 13 games in ’10 and totaled 271-478-3,314-22-16 (56.7). Team captain. Had a 17-29 career starting record. Graduated in December.

Positives: Looks the part. Outstanding size and arm strength to drive the ball into tight spaces. Extremely intelligent and has a strong understanding of the game — set protection and was given reign to heavily audible at the line. Works and practices hard. Very experienced, pro-style passer. Has physical tools to develop.

Negatives: Too analytical on the field — overthinks the game and lacks the innate instincts desired to become a decisive triggerman. Average poise and processing speed in the pocket — holds on to the ball too long and takes needless sacks. Tends to set tall and narrow-based and footwork requires refinement. Not quick-footed to escape the rush — marginal scrambling ability. Struggles to take pace off the ball and throw with touch — does not toss a catchable ball. Crumbled against better competition (Nebraska, Boise State). Has a 54.6 percent career completion percentage and a 37 percent winning percentage, and it shows. Marginal weight-room worker and strength. Lacks mental toughness, confidence and the command to take charge in an NFL locker room.

Summary: A well-built, pocket-passing, four-year starter who still makes too many freshman mistakes. Looks the part on paper, but enters the NFL as very much a project with a long way to go. Has the size and arm strength to fit best into a vertical passing game, but heavy feet, inconsistent accuracy and raw decision making might keep him holding a clipboard for the next 10 years. Most comfortable when he is not on the hot seat.

NFL projection: Fifth- to sixth-round pick.