INDIANAPOLIS - Bryce Young is officially bigger than many predicted he would be at the NFL scouting combine.
The Alabama star quarterback and top draft prospect officially measured in at 5-foot-10 1/8 and 204 pounds Saturday at the NFL scouting combine.
Young said Friday morning that he was comfortable at 200 pounds.
“I’ve been in the 200-pound range, and that’s been something that’s been not too hard to do,” Young said.
The dynamic Alabama star quarterback and former Heisman Trophy winner, facing some skepticism about his frame and durability addressed the topics tactfully.
“I’ve been this size, respectfully, my whole life,” Young said while smiling at the podium. “I know who I am, I know what I can do. For me, it’s fair. Everyone can speculate and ask whatever questions are necessary. I’m going to control what I can control and I’m going to keep working my hardest to put myself in a good position. I’m confident in myself. I know what I can do. I’m excited to get to that next level.’
Young has met with the Texans, who hold the second overall pick formally at the combine, along with the Chicago Bears.
“‘My meeting with the Texans was great,” Young said. “I was super happy to be in that room. It’s an amazing staff and to be able to talk with them.”
A former Southeastern Conference Player of the Year, Young passed for 79 touchdowns and 12 interceptions while going 24-3 as a starter in his two seasons as the Crimson Tide starter. He’s known for his accuracy, live arm, mobility, pocket awareness, intelligence and work ethic.
Young passed for 321 yards and five touchdowns in his final game for Alabama in a Sugar Bowl victory over Kansas State. He’s ranked first overall among all players regardless by position by many draft analysts. He missed time with a sprained AC joint in his right throwing shoulder last season.
“To be honest, I don’t really know too much about what’s said about me,” Young said. “I’m grateful for everyone’s opinion I respect everyone’s opinion, but I focus on what I can control. I take the advice and the direction of the people that I trust.
“My drive isn’t necessarily to prove anything. I think for me it’s to try to explain all the things I see to all the coaches and decision makers and express myself and how I see the game. It’s a big learning experience. I speak my truth. I make sure I explain how I play the game, how I see the game.”
Young has talked with New England Patriots starting quarterback Mac Jones about the draft process. Young backed up Jones before replacing him when Jones was drafted in the first round.
“For me, I really pride myself on my leadership,” Young said. “I know that’s something I have to earn at the next level. I’m really excited to try to earn that trust and respect from that locker room. I know that’s not something I’m entitled to.”
There’s a lot to like about the consensus QB1 of this NFL rookie quarterback draft class.
A consensus All-American, Young passed for 8,356 career yards, 80 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
The Texans are known to have a high opinion on Young in scouting reports. A potential lack of durability due to his relatively smaller frame is the only attribute teams see lacking in Young.
“I know Bryce is an outstanding leader from what I’ve seen, and is an outstanding quarterback,” Texans coach DeMeco Ryans “It’s no surprise the success that he’s had. Just because of the makeup, the type of guy that he is, it’s no surprise the success he’s had. Wishing him the best moving forward.”
A blue-chip recruit, Young stepped in for Jones after backing him up on a national championship squad in 2020.
In his final college season, Young passed for 3,328 yards, 32 touchdowns with five interceptions.
“Sitting my freshman year was something I hadn’t done before,” Young said. “It was hard. I’m a competitor. I wanted to play, but it was a blessing in disguise. Being able to learn from Mac and being able to watch that offense, that team, operate and being able to be there for every step of the way, it really helped me.”
Young was asked repeatedly how much he wants to be first overall pick.
“I feel like I don’t know what’s going to happen,” Young said. “I would be surprised either way. I’m just happy to be here. It’s an honor for me.”
Young was teammates with Texans wide receiver John Metchie III and linebacker Christian Harris at Alabama. The prospect of reuniting with him is intriguing, but it’s not something he’s counting on necessarily.
“Obviously I love Metch, love C-Harris, but, for me, where I end up is something I can’t control,” Young said. “I’m going to give my all to whatever team that takes me. I’m just super excited to be here. It’s my dream to play in the NFLand to be able to be here whatever team I’m able to be taken by is a blessing.”
Aaron Wilson is a Texans and NFL reporter for Sports Talk 790.