QB Jayden Daniels To Meet With Six Teams

TODAY, 7:20pm: Daniels’ visit with the Commanders has officially been scheduled. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the quarterback will visit with the team next Monday and Tuesday.

MARCH 27, 11:00am: Jayden Daniels is going through an abbreviated pro day Wednesday. The 2023 Heisman winner is expected to throw, but NFL.com’s Cameron Wolfe notes the LSU product is not planning to perform other drills. He will then prepare for a cross-country tour of “30” visits.

The fast-rising prospect already has six meetings scheduled, per NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport. The Commanders, Patriots, Giants, Vikings, Broncos and Raiders are planning to meet with Daniels. This sextet of teams makes sense due to QB needs or draft proximity.

The Bears not being included is notable, and the team not meeting with the dual-threat talent would only further solidify its intentions of starting the draft with a Caleb Williams pick. Considering the 2022 Heisman winner has hovered over this draft class for months, the Bears not taking a meeting with another QB prospect would not be too surprising. Then again, a Chicago meeting could emerge down the road during the pre-draft process. Ryan Poles, however, is among several prominent execs or HCs at the pro day.

As should be expected, Antonio Pierce is at LSU’s pro day. The Raiders HC has offered persistent Daniels praise, after being on Arizona State’s staff during the QB prospect’s time with the Sun Devils. Jerod Mayo, Dan Quinn, Dennis Allen, Adam Peters and Joe Hortiz are among the other HCs and execs in attendance today in Baton Rouge, SI.com’s Albert Breer notes. Bears assistant GM Ian Cunningham joins his boss at the pro day, per Breer.

High-end wide receiver prospect Malik Nabers is also generating considerable attention, as should be expected. After declining to weigh in at the Combine, Daniels checked in at 210 pounds today, per Breer.

Each of the teams preparing to bring in Daniels holds a pick between Nos. 2 and 13. The Raiders are on the low end here, landing at No. 13 after they completed a sweep of the Broncos in Week 18. Although mock drafts have regularly sent Daniels to Washington or New England at No. 2 or No. 3, Las Vegas has been consistently connected to him. Daniels attended the Raiders’ regular-season finale to support Pierce, celebrating with the team in the locker room after the game. Connected to a potential trade-up, the Raiders are also believed to have brought up Daniels during their OC search.

The Vikings (No. 11) and Broncos (No. 12) reside well outside of Daniels range as well, but both are logically being tied to a trade-up maneuver. Minnesota acquired Houston’s first-round pick (No. 27), providing more ammo to climb up for a passer. Denver does not have its second-rounder, sending it to New Orleans for Sean Payton, and traded three first-round picks — for Payton and Russell Wilson — from 2022-23. Although the Broncos are planning to acquire another veteran to compete with Jarrett Stidham, they will surely be in on first-round QBs.

Washington (No. 2) and New England (No. 3) have clear needs. How the Commanders proceed will be a pivot point in this draft, with the team now tied to three passers — Daniels, Drake Maye, J.J. McCarthy — at No. 2. Patriots trade-down rumblings have emerged, though a previous rumor suggested some of the team’s scouts are higher on Daniels than Maye. The Pats are doing considerable recon ahead of their Daniels meeting, with Breer adding nine New England representatives are on-hand today.

If the Commanders want Daniels, trade-ups will not factor into the equation. The Giants could also be left out if they are eyeing last year’s Heisman recipient, seeing as the Commanders will be unlikely to trade them the No. 2 pick. Steadily linked to QBs despite Daniel Jones‘ employment, New York has a big-picture decision to make. The team, which holds the No. 6 pick, can easily move on from Jones by 2025. The Giants have already met with Maye and McCarthy.

Transferring to LSU in 2022, Daniels broke through with a dominant final season and became the second Tigers QB to win the Heisman in four years. Following Joe Burrow, Daniels obviously displayed a more versatile skillset than the pocket passer. Accounting for 50 TDs (40 passing) last season, Daniels paired 3,812 passing yards with 1,134 on the ground. The ex-Arizona State recruit completed 72.2% of his passes, setting himself up to go early in this year’s draft.

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