INDIANAPOLIS (92.3 The Fan) – A few years ago Josh Allen was stuck in junior college just begging for a chance to play college football.
His persistence paid off.
Allen was given a scholarship from Wyoming and now he could conceivably be the first pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.
“It’s a really surreal moment, just kind of see everything that I’ve dreamt of as a kid is kind of falling into place and if you knew who I was three years ago I don’t think you would say this is possible,” Allen said Friday as a swarm of humanity surrounded his podium at the NFL Combine.
The Cleveland Browns, who own the Nos. 1 and 4 picks in the upcoming draft, will determine if Allen will get to live out that dream come April.
“It’s every kid’s dream to be drafted No. 1,” Allen said. “I think Cleveland’s got things going in the right direction, they’ve got all the pieces, a lot of draft picks early on, a lot of cap space to go get guys in free agency. So I definitely think that it’s a good spot to be in if you’re fortunate enough to be taken by them, whether it be at 1 or 4.”
So if he were to be selected by the Browns, how would he go about turning around the NFL’s worst franchise?
“I don’t know because I’ve never done it before, but I’d go in there with everything that I have and try to instill a winning mindset and that type of attitude, try and become a leader of the team, getting with the vets of the locker room and understanding what we needed to do to try to turn things around,” Allen said. “A couple years ago, Wyoming went 2-10, the next year we went 8-6, won the Mountain West division title, so I’m not saying that was the same situation, but I’ve been in something very similar and it’s football. I love football.
“Everything I can do to play this game I’m going to do and if they’re willing to step out on a ledge and take me with the No. 1 overall pick, I’m going to give them everything that I have.”
Allen has work to do to prove he’s worthy of such a pick.
His completion percentage is a red flag – 56.0 and 56.3 percent respectively the last 2 years while combining to throw 44 touchdowns and 21 interceptions.
Allen will throw at Lucas Oil Stadium Saturday in Indianapolis and again at his pro day at Wyoming.
“Hopefully that kind of eliminates some of the questions,” Allen said. “But without live bullets and live action coming at you, we’re not going to find that out until gametime situations, whether that be in minicamp or any of those events leading up to the season. But I’m extremely confident in myself and we’re working on it and there’s no doubt in my mind that we’ll figure it out.”
Despite his low completion percentage, Allen’s 6-foot-4, 237-pound frame and strong arm makes scouts salivate and he believes he’s the best in the class.
“I think every quarterback should think that,” Allen said. “If you’re not thinking that you’re the best quarterback in
this draft, you probably shouldn’t be here.”
Allen grew up on a farm near Firebaugh, California before junior college, Wyoming and now the NFL awaits. Going from a small school to the NFL is quite the leap, but it is not impossible, and Allen knows it.
“You see a lot of smaller-school guys go on to the NFL and have success,” Allen said. “Carson Wentz, Derek Carr for example. Carson would’ve been the MVP this past season had he not gotten hurt. The transition from year one to year two was exceptional for him. I was able to talk to him last year, I haven’t talked to him much this year. But just knowing
that we played in the same system, obviously people like to compare me to him and I look at that as a compliment. He’s a fantastic football player, fantastic quarterback and I take those highly that people put me in the same sentence as him, because he’s a really good one.”