Drake Maye

QB, · North Carolina

OVERVIEW

At 6-4, 232 and only 21 years old until August 30, Drake Maye is still maturing but we thought for a while he was good enough to be the QB1 in this draft. He is a dual threat who already has NFL-caliber arm talent, comparable to that of Justin Herbert (Chargers). Maye was literally born with athletic DNA. His father, Mark, was starting quarterback at N. Carolina (1983-87) and spent time in the pros while his mother, Aimee, was an All-State (Carolina) basketball player. Drake is the youngest four athletic brothers who competed for a place at the table. He played every sport he could and stood out in football, baseball (shortstop) and was All-Confereence in basketball where he collecteed 16.1 points and 11.3 rebounds a game as a high school junior.  Brother Luke was a 6-8 forward for N. Carolina (2015-19) with a brief stay in the NBA. Brother Cole pitched on Florida's National Championship team (2017).

We were seduced by Maye's arm, but dropped him from QB1 when we realized it will take a season to consistently harness his significant ability in the NFL. Maye improved his pocket presence in 2023 although output dipped from 2022 when he completed 342 of 517 passes (66.2 pct) for 4,321 yards, 38 TDs, 7 interceptions while adding another 700 yards, seven scores rushing. He likens his approach to playing QB to that of Josh Allen (Bills). We can see that. He is an excellent runner. Maye and USC's popular Caleb Williams are far different athletes and picking between them may be more difficult for an NFL team than it is for fans caught up in the hype. This isn't a popular position, but we think they are close as this draft's QB2 behind Jayden Daniels.

ANALYSIS

Strengths: Drake Maye's strengths are numerous. Physically, he epitomizes the ideal modern mobile quarterback. He is more  athletic than most realize. He was a productive forward in basketball and could have played in college. His quick feet helped him run for 698 yards in 2022, 449 in 2023 and 42 first down runs over the last two seasons. Add to that an arm with elite strength and control and he looks like a nightmare waiting to happen for NFL defenses. He is a naturally gifted athlete with a remarkable sense of balance and agility, particularly when maneuvering within the pocket. Additionally, his speed and athletic ability provide him with the option to run when plays fall apart. Even with North Carolina having one of the weakest offensive lines in college football in 2022, Maye posted exceptional numbers. 

Weaknesses:  Maye has some areas that need improvement, like keeping the bit in his mouth instead of making reckless decisions. He is a deceptive scrambler but tends to take too long in picking a target, thus creating unnecessary pressure on his already burdened offensive line. In 2022 he was relatively slow moving through his progressions when his first option is not available. When he scrambles outside of the pocket, his accuracy often declines. Needs to work on body and foot movement.

Frankly: We've backed off touting Maye as the QB1 in this draft, but he has assets that could make him one of the NFL's best for a long time. Maye's pocket presence, powerful arm and athleticism that will make him a PIA for NFL defenses sooner and later ,  It might do him well to sit and learn for a year, after which he should be ready to display his sky-high potential -- FC.

2023 Statistics 

 Passing

G           Att         Comp   Pct.       Yards    Yards/Att            TD         Int              Rating   Att/G    Yards/G

12          425       269       63.3      3608     8.5                       24          9            149.00            35.4      300.7

Rushing

G           Att         Yards    Avg.      TD         Att/G    Yards/G

12          112       449       4.01      9            9.33      37.42

Scoring

G           TD         FG         1XP       2XP       Safety  Points   Points/G

12          9            0            0            1            0            56          4.7

Total Offense

G           Rush Yards        Pass Yards         Plays    Total Yards        Yards/Play              Yards/G

12          449                 3608                    537       4057                7.55                        338.1

All-Purpose Running

G           Rush     Recv.    Punt Ret.            Kick Ret.            Int. Ret.              Plays    Total Yards        Yards/Play         Yards/G

12          449       0            0                       0                       0                       112       449                          4.0              37.4

Yards From Scrimmage

G           Rush Yards        Recv Yards        TD         Plays    Total Yards              Yards/Play         Yards/G

 

12          449                     0                     9            112      449                              4.0                     37.4

2023 Season Review

WEEK 13: Maye was productive in this 39-20 blowout loss to regional rival NC State. He completed  22 of 38 passes for 254 yards, two TDs , two INTs and ran for 106 yards and another TD. But after winning their first six games of the season, the Wolfpack lost four of the last six. With no conference championship game, North Carolina waits to learn in which bowl game it will participate. However, Maye's future isn’t worth risking injury in a meaningless bowl game, considering he appeared to have a hobbled ankle late against the Wolfpack. There was a collective sigh of relief when he finished out the game. A major injury could cause Maye to fall out of the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft and cost him tens of millions of dollars. — FC

Week 12: Clemson 31, North Carolina 20. In arguably Drake Maye's worst game of the season. Maye dropped back  45 times, completed only 16 of 36 passes (44.4 pct) for 209 yards, one touchdown and one interception and was sacked four times. He marched  the Tar Heels into the red zone three times in the first quarter and collected only seven points. The Tigers defense caused two big turnovers in the first half. Maye was 5 of 9 for 120 yards in the opening quarter. He was just 11 of 27 for 89 yards and an interception the rest of the way as the Tar Heels lost to Clemson for a sixth consecutive time. — FC

Week 11: Maye pushed the Tar Heels to one final lead before UNC stopped Duke's 2-point conversion attempt to tie the game in the second overtime, sending the No. 24 Tar Heels to a 47-45 win against the rival Blue Devils in a thriller. Maye completed 28 of 43 passes for 342 yards and one touchdown, his 21st on the season against only six interceptions. Maye was at the center the action at the end of regulation and in overtime “I think he's as good as anybody I've ever been around,” UNC coach Mack Brown said, adding: “He never even flinched.” Maye ran around the right side, barged through hits near the goal line and extended the ball for a 5-yard touchdown. Then he made a play on the fly for the conversion, one of the intangibles to go with his size, arm and mobility that has made him an NFL prospect. — FC

Week 10: After two consecutive losses, North Carolina found the perfect remedy by brutalizing visiting Campbell, 59-7, as Maye completed 16 of 23 for 244 yards and four touchdowns. Maye and most UNC starters came out of the game late in the third quarter. — FC

Week 9: Again UNC was shocked, this time by Georgia Tech, 46-42. Maye was 17-of-25 for 310 yards and two TDs as the Tar Heels featured a balanced attack that totaled 577 yards of offense. Things again did not break Maye and UNC's way late. Trailing by four and driving with three minutes to go, Maye hit Davontez Walker on a deep throw, but the wide receiver fumbled inside the Tech 30-yard line. The Tar Heels offense never got back the ball. — JH

Week 8: In UNC's stunning loss Virginia, 31-27, Maye threw for 347 yards and two TDs but was not as efficient (24 of 48) as he was in earlier games. He twice had opportunities late in the contest to rally the Tar Heels to a victory: the first ended just outside Virginia's red zone, with UNC turning over the ball on downs. The second drive ended when Maye was hit by a Virginia pass rusher Paul Akere and his errant pass intercepted by James Jackson to seal the Cavs' upset win. — JH

Week 7: Maye wasn't quite as efficient in UNC's 41-31 win over Miami as he's been in prior weeks. The star QB went 17-33 — the first game this season he finished a game with a completion percentage under 70 percent. Maye did, however, throw for four touchdowns, in addition to 273 yards. He also avoided an interception for the third straight game, though. — JH

Week 6: North Carolina moved to 5-0 on the year with Maye's stellar play leading the way. In the Tar Heels, 40-7 thrashing of Syracuse, Maye passed for a 442 yards, the second highest single-game total of his collegiate career, going 33-of-47 and throwing three TDs. For the second straight week, he did not throw an interception, though he did fumble. He ran for 55 yards on 14 attempts, his most yards running the ball in 2023. — JH

Week 5: DNP — North Carolina idle

Week 4: The North Carolina averaged a second-best 9.9 YPA, completing 22-of-30 for 296 yards and one TD, despite being under pressure (sacked five times). North Carolina beat host Pittsburgh, 41-24. For the third straight game, Tar Heels receivers dropped two of Maye's passes. Maye was less effective as a rusher than he has been this season, getting just three yards on 10 carries. —JH

Week 3: In a 31-13 win over visiting Minnesota, Maye overcame two interceptions and threw for a season high 414 yards with two touchdowns, with long gains of 55, 46, 39 and 38 yards. Twenty passes were aimed at WR Nate McCollum, who caught 15 for 165 yards and a touchdown. Maye averaged a sparkling 10.3 yards per attempt. He also ran 13 times for 34 yards. — JH 

Week 2: North Carolina made it 2-0 with a win over pesky Apalachian State, 40-34. Drake completed 21-of-30 passes (70 percent) for 207 yards. He didn't throw a touchdown pass but he also avoiding throwing an interception.

Week 1: In a 31-27 win on the road against border rival South Carolina and quarterback Spencer Rattler, Maye, who grew up in the Charlotte suburb of Huntersville, led scoring drives on five of North Carolina’s first six possessions, excluding a kneel down at the end of the first half. While Rattler was rattled by nine sacks, Maye completed 24 of 32 passes for 269 yards and two touchdowns, although he threw two interceptions in the final 18 minutes. -- FC

 

Week 0: DNP

Awards and Honors

        PFF Third-Team All-American (2022)

        ACC Player of the Year (2022)

        Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year (2022)

        FWAA Freshman All-American (2022)

        Manning Award Finalist (2022)

        Walter Camp National Player of the Year Semifinalist (2022)

        Maxwell Award Semifinalist (2022)

        Davey O'Brien Award Semifinalist (2022)

        In 2022, he became just the sixth QB since 2010 to post 4,000 pass yards, 35 pass TDs, 650 rush yards, and seven rush TDs in a season, joining Kyler Murray, DeShaun Watson, Marcus Mariota, Johnny Manziel, and Robert Griffin III.Top of Form

HISTORY — from college profile

2022 (redshirt fr): Started all 14 games at quarterback • Named Shaun Alexander and FWAA Freshman of the Year • FWAA Freshman All-American • Manning Award Finalist • Selected ACC Player of the Year, ACC Offensive Player of the Year, ACC Rookie of the Year and ACC Offensive Rookie of the Year • Only the second player in ACC history to sweep all four awards joining Jameis Winston in 2013 • First-team All-ACC • A two-time Maxwell Award Player of the Week (App, Pitt) • Walter Camp Offensive Player of the Week (WF) • A four-time Manning Award Star of the Week • A two-time Davey O'Brien National QB of the Week (Pitt, WF) • A five-time Davey O'Brien Great 8 honoree • Named ACC Rookie of the Week five times and QB of the Week on six occasions • Completed 342-of-517 passes (66.2%) for 4,321 yards and 38 TDs, while rushing for 698 yards and seven TDs • Became just the sixth QB since 2010 to post 4,000 pass yards, 35 pass TDs, 650 rush yards and seven rush TDs in a season joining Kyler Murray (2018), DeShaun Watson (2015, ’16), Marcus Mariota (2014), Johnny Manziel (2013) and Robert Griffin III (2011) • Finished second nationally in total offense per game (358.5), sixth in passing yards (308.6) and tied for fifth in passing TDs (38) • Tied for third nationally and ranked second in the Power 5 with 45 total touchdowns (38 pass, 7 rush) and 272 points accounted for • Set school single-season records for yards passing (4,321), completions (342) and attempts (517) • Tied the UNC single-season record for touchdown passes (38) • Averaged 308.6 yards passing per game and led the team with 698 yards rushing • Joined Patrick Mahomes (2016) and Johnny Manziel (2013) as the last three QBs to average over 300 pass yards per game, while leading their team in rushing • Sixth player in ACC history with more than 4,300 yards passing • Became the fifth quarterback in ACC history with over 5,000 yards of total offense for a single-season finishing with 5,019 yards • His 157.9 passer rating is tied for fifth on UNC’s single-season list, while his 66.2 completion percentage ranks sixth • Made first career start against FAMU and completed 29 passes on 37 attempts, throwing for 294 yards and five touchdowns • Added 55 rushing yards on four carries • Became the first UNC QB to throw five TDs in a starting debut and the first to throw five in a season opener • Joined Jameis Winston (FSU, 2013) as the only ACC QBs in the last 15 seasons with 75% completion percentage and 5 TDs in first career start • Accounted for five touchdowns (four pass, one rush) and was 24 of 36 for 352 passing yards and 76 rushing yards at App State • The 9 TD passes are the most through a team’s first two games by any ACC player since 2000 and the most ever by a UNC QB in the first two games of a season • Tossed a pair of TDs and was 19 of 24 for 284 passing yards at Georgia State • Was 17 of 32 for 301 passing yards and five touchdowns against Notre Dame • Accounted for all five UNC touchdowns (three pass, two rush) and was 26 of 36 for a career-high 363 passing yards against Virginia Tech • Also rushed for a team-leading 73 yards and single-handedly outgained the Hokies, 436 to 273, in total offense • Was 19 of 28 for 309 passing yards and two touchdowns and ran for 53 yards on 14 carries at Miami • Racked up 450 total yards of offense at Duke with 380 passing and 70 rushing yards • Had three passing touchdowns and completed 28 of 38 passing attempts against the Blue Devils • Accounted for 95 percent of UNC's total offense (449 of 474 yards) against Pitt • Set a season high and UNC freshman record in completions with 33, passed for 388 yards and equaled his career high for the third time in 2022 with five passing touchdowns against Pitt • Also ran for a team-high 61 yards • Was 26 of 27 for 293 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 74 yards on 16 carries and a TD at Virginia • Set season highs in attempts (49) and passing yards (448) while throwing three touchdowns at Wake Forest • Also ran for a team-high 71 yards and his fifth rushing touchdown against the Demon Deacons • Completed 16 of 30 for 202 passing yards at home against Georgia Tech • Scored two fourth quarter touchdowns against NC State to force overtime • Finished with 29 completions and 232 yards through the air in the home finale • Completed 26 passes on 42 attempts for 268 yards against Clemson in the ACC Championship • Was 18 for 35 for 206 yards passing and tied the UNC bowl record with three TD passes in the Holiday Bowl against Oregon.

2021 (true fr): Appeared in four games at quarterback • Made collegiate debut against Georgia State • Appeared in the Duke game • Played the second half against Wofford and was 7 of 9 for 89 yards passing and connected with Kamari Morales for his first collegiate touchdown pass • Rushed four times for 38 yards against the Terriers • Attempted one pass and rushed for 24 yards on two carries against South Carolina in the Duke's Mayo Bowl.

High School: Attended Myers Park High School (Huntersville, N. C). An early enrollee who was a four-star prospect listed as the nation’s 57th-best player, the No. 6 pro-style quarterback and the No. 3 player in North Carolina in the 247Sports Composite • Tabbed as the nation’s 45th-best player, the No. 8 pocket passer and the No. 4 player in the state according to ESPN • A member of the ESPN 300 • Ranked as the nation’s 145th best player, the No. 8 pro-style quarterback and the No. 9 player in the state by Rivals • An Under Armour Alll-America Game selection • Tallied 6,713 yards and 86 TDs on 398-of-581 (68.5%) passing over his two prep seasons • An SI All-America candidate prior to his senior season • Named second-team All-American and MaxPreps North Carolina Player of the Year as a junior • Also tabbed first-team All-Observer and the Observer’s Male Athlete of the Year • Led Myers Park to a 12-1 record, a league title and a berth in the third round of the state playoffs • Completed 210-of-290 passes (72%) for 3,512 yards, 50 TDs and just two INTs • Both his yards and TDs set school records • Earned all-conference honors and the Rising Star Award as a sophomore • Recorded 3,201 yards and 36 TDs • Helped Myers Park to a 13-2 record and a trip to the state semifinals • Also a three-year basketball standout who averaged 16.1 points and 11.3 rebounds per game as a junior and earned all-conference and all-district honors • Coached by Scott Chadwick.

PERSONAL

Son of Mark and Aimee Maye • Dad, Mark, played football at UNC from 1983-88 • Brother, Luke, was a Tar Heel basketball great from 2015-19 • Brother, Cole, won an NCAA baseball title at Florida • Brother, Beau, is a member of the UNC basketball team • Mom, Aimee, attended UNC • Birthday is Aug. 30.

2022

passing
ATT YPA PCT YDS INT TD COMPLETIONS
516.0 8.4 0.663 4321.0 7.0 38.0 342.0
rushing
YPC TD YDS CAR LONG
3.8 7.0 699.0 184.0 42.0
fumbles
REC LOST FUM
0.0 6.0 8.0

2021

passing
ATT YPA PCT YDS INT TD COMPLETIONS
10.0 8.9 0.7 89.0 0.0 1.0 7.0
rushing
YPC TD YDS CAR LONG
10.3 0.0 62.0 6.0 19.0

Physical Attributes:

Proj Rd: 1
Height: 6043
Weight: 225
Forty: 4.62
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