Commanders Pass on Drake Maye at No. 2 in Mel Kiper’s January Mock Draft

Drake Maye Washington Commanders

Getty Drake Maye throwing against NC State.

With the No. 2 pick in the 2024 NFL draft, the Washington Commanders have a tough decision to make.

It’s all but confirmed that Caleb Williams is going to go number one. Whether the Chicago Bears trade that pick or not is another thing, but the expectation is that Williams goes number one. That leaves the commanders with two options, Jayden Daniels or Drake Maye.

Sam Howell showed promise at times throughout the season for Washington, but his league-leading interceptions (21) were a major concern.

According to Mel Kiper of ESPN, he’s “not that guy” for the Commanders. Kiper wrote that they have to take a quarterback. His pick, however, was a bit surprising.

“The Commanders have a much more straightforward decision than the Bears. Sam Howell, who led the league in interceptions in 2023, is not the guy. They have to take a quarterback in a draft that has a clear top tier of three signal-callers: Williams, Daniels and Drake Maye (North Carolina).”

Kiper goes on to say that Daniels of LSU would be his pick.

“The reigning Heisman Trophy winner improved so much in 2023, throwing 40 touchdown passes to just four interceptions while going up against a tough SEC schedule. In December, I went deep on his strengths, weaknesses and future, so you can see my full thoughts on his game there. The bottom line is it’s tight between Daniels and Maye on my board, but Daniels would be an tremendous fit for a Washington roster that has some young playmakers on offense.

“Maye’s inconsistency at the end of the season is enough for me to put Daniels at No. 2. The reality, though, is the Commanders just hired their new general manager and still don’t have a coach, so there’s a lot to figure out about which direction they go.”

Jayden Daniels or Drake Maye for the Commanders?

It’s not an easy decision when it comes to Maye or Daniels. Both quarterbacks play a different style and can bring the Commanders certain things that the other one can’t.

Daniels had 50 touchdowns this season with 40 through the air in just 4 interceptions. His play in the SEC earned him the Heisman trophy. It was a season to remember in arguably the toughest conference in college football. He finished the season with a 95.6 QBR, the best in the nation.

Maye isn’t any slouch either. The 21-year-old has the perfect quarterback build, standing at 6-foot-4 and 230 pounds. He tossed for 3,608 yards, 24 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. His 79.3 QBR ranked 15th in college football.

There Isn’t a Wrong Pick

This could be one of those drafts that 10 years from now, people are looking back and comparing the first three quarterbacks selected.

With quarterback talent at an all-time high in the top three of this draft, all of them will be critiqued at a different level than most other classes.

However, with the way that Maye and Daniels played in college, the Washington Commanders can’t go wrong with drafting either one. Both of them proved that they can play at a high level and it’s up to the Commanders’ front office and coaching staff to put either one of them in a position to succeed.