Los Angeles Wildcats: Josh Johnson
The 33-year-old journeyman has been on 13 NFL teams, with stints in the UFL and AAF. Coming off a flawless run at San Diego out of college, NFL scouts compared his game to Randall Cunningham. With a live arm and top-end athleticism, he had tools that teams loved even though he never got the press attention he deserved in college.
Tampa Bay took him in the 5th round, and ever since he’s drawn interest from teams around the league looking for depth at QB. However, he has struggled with turnovers at the next level, with an 8-14 TD/INT ratio in limited playing time. Yet If we look beyond the surface level statline, we’ll see that coaching staffs across the league have thought highly enough of his skill set and intangibles to bring him in time and time again.
With Luis Perez as their starter, the Wildcats will likely have Johnson compete for the backup spot with Jalan McClendon and Taryn Christion, neither of whom has pro experience beyond a handful of preseason snaps.
St. Louis Battlehawks: Taylor Heinicke
The Heinicke news broke two days ago, but we weren’t sure which team he’d end up on. It’s interesting that someone in the supplemental draft could be assigned in this way, but the Battlehawks is a great destination for the 26-year-old passer.
With just Jordan Ta’amu and Brogan Roback on the roster, the Battlehawks are much better off for having an NFL vet on the team. Ta’amu and Roback both have upside, but neither of them have made it to a regular-season roster in the pros. A little experience in the QB locker room goes a long way, and if Ta’amu struggles early, they could always fall back on Heinicke.
He put up insane numbers at Old Dominion and broke the NCAA Division I record for single-game pass yards before landing with the Vikings. He spent time with a few teams before finally fining the field with the Panthers in relief of Cam Newton. It wasn’t a golden debut, as he threw 1-3 TD/INT, but with 5 preseasons of play, he has some pro experience to draw from. With great accuracy and mobility, he could put it all together in the XFL.
Seattle Dragons: Chase Litton
At 6’5″ 230, Litton has the ideal QB frame, and he’s cut out to be a prototypical pocket passer with a big arm and quick release. A three-year starter at Marshall, he played well enough to find his way onto the Chiefs as a UDFA.
He played well in two years of preseason action with Kansas City, passing for 4 TD’s to 1 INT with a 68.7% completion rate. We’ve yet to see him take meaningful snaps, but two years of learning behind Patrick Mahomes with Andy Reid is about as ideal a situation as a UDFA can hope to find. Veteran Matt Moore ended up taking the backup job, and Litton ended up on the Jaguars practice squad.
The Dragons have a pretty deep QB room from Brandon Silvers to BJ Daniels and Joe Callahan, so Litton is a longshot to make this roster, but if he plays well enough in practice he could push the QB3 job or attract attention from another team.
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