Path to the Pros 2012: Ryan Tannehill

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STACK followed dozens of the NFL's top prospects as they hit the gym to get ready for the NFL Combine and beyond. In our Path to the Pros video series, we show you how these world-class athletes trained for the next level. Today, we turn the spotlight on one of the most talked about prospects in this year's Draft, former Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

Standing 6'4" and possessing superb throwing mechanics, elite athleticism and experience in a pro-style offense, Ryan Tannehill looks and acts the part of an NFL quarterback. He even talks the talk: "It's all about going out every day, trying to get better, become the best quarterback I can be, and in the end, it will all work out."

QB Ryan Tannehill NFL Draft

Ryan Tannehill possesses the skills and intangibles to develop into an elite NFL QB.

Tannehill's mental strength and leadership traits stand out. What remains to be determined is whether he can excel as an NFL quarterback.

Sure, that question canĀ  be asked about every QB prospect, even those named Luck and Griffin. But Tannehill presents a special case, and an unusual set of circumstances surround his name and draft stock.

The former Aggie is essentially locked in as the number three QB prospect in the 2012 NFL Draft, right behind Luck and Griffin. And with the premium on elite QBs set at an all-time high, he is almost guaranteed to be selected in the top 10 of the first round.

But here's where things get dicey. The first 10 to 15 draft picks are normally used to secure immediate impact players. Tannehill, despite his enormous upside, is viewed more as a developmental QB who will need at least one season of learning from the sidelines. Remember, during his first two seasons at Texas A&M, he was a wide receiver.

Tannehill would not be the first developmental QB who scores high in the first round. The 24th pick of the 2005 NFL Draft, a QB from Cal named Aaron Rodgers, waited three seasons before taking over the starting job for the Green Bay Packers. We all know how that worked out.

Where Tannehill will land in this year's Draft, no one knows. By many estimates, a team needing a QB and picking near the top will be sufficiently intrigued to pull the trigger and select Tannehill.

Despite all the hype, Tannehill is taking nothing for granted throughout the process. He says, "It's a huge blessing to be in this situation, to have the opportunity to try out for the NFL and hopefully get drafted and play in the NFL."


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: FOOTBALL | QUARTERBACK | PATH TO THE PROS