NFL Rumors: Insider forecasts potentially shocking fate for Drake Maye

There is a chance that Drake Maye is not the second quarterback taken in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Drake Maye, North Carolina Tar Heels
Drake Maye, North Carolina Tar Heels / Grant Halverson/GettyImages

This was inevitably going to happen, but the nitpicking of blue-chip NFL prospects has begun. All year long, North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye was QB2 on everyone's big board behind only USC star Caleb Williams. They were going one-two in the upcoming 2024 NFL Draft. Then, UNC and USC greatly disappointed, and Jayden Daniels had a Heisman Trophy-winning season with the LSU Tigers.

While I have had Daniels knocking on the door of being QB2 with Maye for a few weeks now, Lance Zierlein is a much braver man than me. The NFL Draft expert for said on Move the Sticks to Daniel Jeremiah that he thinks Maye could slide on draft night. Former Kentucky star Will Levis fell all the way out of the first round last spring. Fortunately for Maye, Zierlein did not drop Maye that far...

Zierlein had Maye fall to No. 5 where my hometown Atlanta Falcons traded up from No. 8 to get him. Williams goes No. 1 to the Chicago Bears in Zierlein's latest NFL mock draft, while Daniels goes to the Washington Commanders picking at No. 2. The other big faller in his latest mock draft is former Georgia tight end Brock Bowers, who fell outside of the top 10 to the Indianapolis Colts at No. 15.

Bowers' and Maye's falls are shocking, but I am starting to understand why people are fading Maye.

NFL Draft expert has UNC QB Drake Maye falling outside of the top three

With the Bears, Commanders and New England Patriots all possibly looking at a quarterback inside the top three, I just have a really difficult time seeing Maye fall out of the top three. He may have higher upside over Daniels, but like Williams, he has massive bust potential, especially if he goes to the wrong team. That team is probably New England, but I don't trust Chicago any more than I should.

Yes, the arm talent and overall likability will get Maye drafted very high. Surely, he will interview well, but that might make up for a few areas where I think he might be coming up short. Does he have that dog in him? North Carolina had been a contender in the ACC the last two years before running into ... Georgia Tech... The Yellow Jackets are much-improved under Brent Key, but they are not a great team.

To me, passing on Williams at No. 1 will get a general manager fired. He has the talent to be the next Patrick Mahomes, but his character issues could have him as the next Jeff George or Jay Cutler. Regardless, you have to take him first because nobody is ever going to blame you for doing so. However, I think there is a chance at a far better return with Daniels at No. 2, especially Washington.

Maye strikes me as the type of guy who is going to go with the flow more than he should. He will put up with organizational nonsense like Andrew Luck did for years in Indianapolis, and to some degree, what Justin Herbert has done the last four years in Los Angeles. Maye is very talented, but does he live to win?

Maye going to a bad spot could be a great way to deprive him of tapping into all of his raw potential.

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