Texas A&M QB: ‘I’ve Had Great Talks’ with Steelers

Kellen Mond

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images Kellen Mond #11 of the Texas A&M Aggies looks to pass against the Auburn Tigers on December 05, 2020.

On Tuesday the Pittsburgh Steelers were in attendance at Texas A&M’s Pro Day, where quarterback Kellen Mond was the main attraction. According to Jim Nagy, director of the Senior Bowl, the Steelers were one of six teams that sent either a QB coach or offensive coordinator to watch Mond’s workout, the others being the Bears, Panthers, Bengals, Cowboys and Vikings.

The event was closed to the media, but we have Mond’s official results, which include an exceptionally quick 4.59-second 40-yard dash.

We also have the following tweet from Texas A&M Football, which promotes a highlight reel throw.

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Kellen Mond: ‘I’ve Had Some Great Talks’ with the Steelers

Notably, after Tuesday’s Pro Day Mond held a press conference in which he indicated that he has talked to the Steelers “a couple of times.”

“[I] don’t want to say any names,” he added, “but I’ve definitely had some great talks with scouts and higher-ups [in Pittsburgh’s organization].”

The Aggies’ four-year starter also indicated he’s had conversations with the Chicago Bears and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

“I’ve had a lot of interactions with the Bears, and I definitely see a connection,” he said, this according to the Bryan College Station Eagle, referring to another team with an obvious need at the quarterback position.


Where Does Mond Rank Among This Year’s QBs?

Yet there is little hype around Mond, despite the fact that he passed for 9,661 yards with 71 touchdowns and 27 interceptions during his college career. That includes a 2020 season in which he threw 19 touchdown passes against three interceptions while winning eight of nine SEC games, plus an Orange Bowl win over North Carolina. (The lone loss came at Alabama, a 52-24 defeat.)

For one, Pro Football Focus (PFF) has Mond as its eighth-ranked quarterback in this year’s draft class. However, Michael Renner of PFF takes care to note that unlike most of the other top quarterback prospects, Mond hasn’t had a chance to play with “anything resembling NFL-caliber weapons.”

“In his three years as a starter, Mond hasn’t competed with a wide receiver who was drafted,” notes Renner. “His top option this past year, Jhamon Ausbon, is a fringe draftable prospect. His highest coveted weapon at the next level was tight end Jace Sternberger, who went in the third round [to the Green Bay Packers] in 2019.”

But the bottom line is that most NFL observers have Mond among a second-tier of draftable quarterbacks, behind a strong top group that features Trevor Lawrence (Clemson), Zach Wilson (BYU), Justin Fields (Ohio State), Trey Lance (North Dakota State) and Mac Jones (Alabama). But some analysts—like former NFL quarterback Chris Simms—have Mond ranked in the top tier, with Simms viewing him as the fourth-best quarterback in this year’s class, behind Wilson, Lawrence and Jones, in that order.

Speaking about Mond, Simms recently said: “What the F***? Nobody is talking about this guy…? I don’t understand why there is no talk about this guy,” noting that he believes Mond is “a machine” in terms of throwing the ball.

“He has got an unbelievable release, he has great command of the ball…. As a pure consistent thrower, [he’s] better than Trevor Lawrence,” said Simms, who says he has had trouble finding flaws with Mond’s game. “He’s a little robotic…. I wish he would play a little more backyard football,” offered Simms.

“But he’s a Top 20 pick for me,” Simms concluded, clearly not afraid to go against the conventional wisdom.


Postscript

If you’re a Steelers fan and you believe that Kevin Colbert & Co. have genuine interest in Mond, then Simms’ evaluation is worth remembering, as last year he offered a particularly astute analysis of Chase Claypool, calling him “a first-round talent” who would be selected within the first 45 picks in last year’s draft. As it turns out, Claypool was still available when Pittsburgh selected Claypool No. 49 overall.

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