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Which QBs could Patriots be looking at in the college draft?

Louisville’s Lamar Jackson is a two-way threat.
Louisville’s Lamar Jackson is a two-way threat.(timothy j. easley/AP)

The 2018 NFL Draft has the potential to be deep at quarterback, with big-name players from top-level colleges available.

Following their trade of Jimmy Garoppolo, the Patriots may be in the market for one. Here are some of the best available:

Lamar Jackson, Louisville

Jackson won the Heisman Trophy last season as a sophomore, completing 56.2 percent of his passes for 3,543 yards while racking up 1,571 rushing yards on 260 carries. As a junior, Jackson has become more accurate, with a 60.2 percent completion rate, and has thrown 18 touchdown passes. He has drawn comparisons to Michael Vick.

Clayton Thorson, Northwestern

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Like Garoppolo (and Tom Brady), Thorson has a quick-release style, with the ability to throw short passes or deep balls over the middle. The junior has a completion rate of 61.2 percent but has thrown just 10 touchdown passes to go along with nine interceptions.

Sam Darnold, USC

Just a sophomore, Darnold has already shown he has pro potential. His completion percentage has dropped in his second season, and he has surpassed his interception total from a year ago with 10. Although projected as a first-rounder, Darnold has two years of eligibility left.

Southern Cal’s Sam Darnold.
Southern Cal’s Sam Darnold. (ralph freso/AP)

Mason Rudolph, Oklahoma State

The 6-foot-5 inch senior is enjoying one his best seasons, hurling 22 touchdown passes with only five interceptions. Rudolph’s 175.5 passer rating is by far his career best, but he has received criticism for his anticipation in the pocket. He is projected to be chosen anywhere from the second to the fourth round.

Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma

One of the more underrated quarterbacks, Mayfield has a 72.5 percent completion rate with 23 touchdown passes and only three interceptions this season. He has had problems reading defenses in the past, though he has improved on that in his senior year. He is seen as either a third- or fourth-round selection.

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Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield.
Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield. (sue ogrocki/AP)

Riley Ferguson, Memphis

Ferguson has thrown for 2,583 yards and 23 touchdowns this season with only seven interceptions. In big games, Ferguson has proven his grit, throwing for 400 yards against UCLA and 471 yards in a Thursday night road win over Houston. The senior is projected to be chosen between the third and fifth rounds.

Josh Rosen, UCLA

Projected as the top quarterback prospect ahead of this season, Rosen has thrown 20 touchdown passes already. However, his eight interceptions have raised red flags about his decision making. Rosen gained prominence when he engineered a historic comeback over Texas A&M in the Bruins’ season opener in September. His composure and ability to operate under center are desirable traits for a QB.

Josh Allen, Wyoming

One of the most talked-about prospects, Allen has disappointed this season, throwing just 12 touchdowns and six interceptions. His touchdown-to-interception ratio was similar last year (28/15) while his 1,450 yards this season are well below par. Allen has led Wyoming to a 5-3 record and is still projected to be taken anywhere between the first and third rounds.

Luke Falk, Washington State

Aside from his five-interception outlier against California, Falk has thrown just two picks along with 23 touchdown passes this season. Falk has completed 68 percent of his passes after topping 70 percent last season. The highly touted senior is projected to go between rounds two and four.


Dan Shulman can be reached at dan.shulman@globe.com; Follow him on Twitter @GlobeDanShulman.

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