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2024 Rookie Profile: Spencer Rattler – Quarterback

Bobby Bishop (@imbobbybish) dives into one of the most polarizing quarterbacks of the 2024 NFL Draft. Originally projected to be one of the top quarterbacks in the 2022 NFL Draft, Rattler had a bumpy college journey. However, Spencer Rattler has matured into a quarterback with legitimate starter upside.

Tale of the Tape

  • College: South Carolina
  • Year: Senior
  • Age: 23 (September 28, 2000)
  • Height: 6’0″
  • Weight: 211
  • Arms: 31″
  • Hands: 9.875′
  • 40-Yard Dash: 4.95
  • Vert: 32″
  • Broad: 9’0″
  • 3-Cone: 7.21
  • 20-Yard Shuttle: 4.37

The Prospect

Spencer Rattler has been one of the more polarizing QB prospects of the 2024 cycle. As a recruit in 2019, Rattler was the ninth-rated prospect by 247sports and was the number one quarterback prospect. He was the Elite 11 MVP and was selected to participate in QB1, a Netflix documentary about high school quarterback prospects.

As an 18-year-old, Rattler acted like many 18-year-olds might when told they are the best quarterback in the country: an arrogant jerk. He broke Arizona records as a senior and chose to commit to Oklahoma, following in the footsteps of two of the most recent Heisman winners, Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray.

College Career

Passing Table
Year School Conf Class G Cmp Att Pct Yds Y/A AY/A TD Int Rate
*2019OklahomaBig 12FR371163.6817.49.210155.5
*2020OklahomaBig 12FR1121431767.530319.610.3287172.6
*2021OklahomaBig 12SO914018774.914837.97.9115155.5
*2022South CarolinaSECJR1326439966.230267.67.11812138.7
2023South CarolinaSECSR1227539968.931868.08.0198147.7
South Carolina53979867.562127.87.63720143.2

Rattler went into the perfect situation at Oklahoma. He learned the offense and sat behind Alabama transfer Jalen Hurts. Rattler redshirted that year and soaked in all he could. In 2020, he was a pre-season Heisman favorite, ranking fourth in Heisman odds behind Justin Fields, Trevor Lawrence, and (check notes again) Jamie Newman.

The 2020 season was far from normal for anybody, but Rattler had an impressive redshirt freshman season. He threw for 3,031 yards and 28 touchdowns with just seven interceptions and was named the CBS Sports Freshman of the Year.

For Rattler, it seemed like 2021 was his year. He was a pre-season Heisman favorite again, and everywhere you looked, he was going first overall in Way-Too-Early 2022 NFL Mock Drafts. Only one problem stood in his way: a 5-star recruit named Caleb Williams. To begin the season, Rattler looked solid. He completed over 70% of his passes in each of his first five games but struggled against Texas. After starting the game 8 for 15 with an interception, Lincoln Riley benched Rattler for Williams, who ignited the comeback. Spencer Rattler’s regime in Norman had come to an end.

A Second Chance

Rattler entered the transfer portal following the 2021 season and felt comfortable committing to South Carolina due to his previous experience with Shane Beamer in Oklahoma. His 2022 campaign had ups and downs, but Rattler ended the season with a bang. Tennessee came into Columbia with legitimate College Football Playoff hopes. He put that to bed with a nearly flawless game, throwing for 438 yards and six touchdowns.

Rattler didn’t love his 2022 NFL Draft evaluations, so he returned for one more season with the Gamecocks. In 2023, Rattler finished his college career strong, without much of a supporting cast around him other than Xavier Legette. Rattler completed 68.9% of his passes. He threw for 3,186 yards and 19 touchdowns to eight interceptions and declared for the 2024 NFL Draft.

One of Rattler’s best decisions was going to the Senior Bowl. After a week of accurate passes and showcasing his maturity and growth in interviews, he completed all four passes for 65 yards and a touchdown. Rattler was named Senior Bowl MVP.


Arm Talent

Here, Rattler sidesteps the pressure and showcases his uber-quick release. The throw is perfectly on target despite Rattler’s non-standard arm angle. It’s very impressive.

On this play, Rattler rolls outside and delivers a deep throw on the run. Even without set feet, Rattler still leads his receiver and places the ball where either the receiver will get it or nobody.

Anyone familiar with the Elite 11 might recognize this play’s similarity to their “Rail Shot Challenge.” It tests both arm strength and accuracy. You have to drive the ball so that a safety cannot help out the cornerback, but you also have to place the ball on your receiver’s back shoulder to give your receiver a chance. The challenge often separates guys with futures from guys without futures in football. Here, Rattler executes it perfectly, getting the ball out on time and driving it. His ball placement is perfect, giving his receiver a chance at football. Elite.


A free-running linebacker is speeding toward Rattler’s face, but he places his feet and hits Legette in the middle of the field. Rattler takes a huge hit as soon as he delivers the football, but he gets back up and keeps rolling.

Again showcasing his toughness, Rattler rips the ball in the face of pressure. He trusted his receiver and gave him a shot. This pass is incredibly impressive because of how much velocity Rattler gets on it despite backpedaling and jumping to throw it. He gets drilled, gets up, and sprints down the field to punch it in.

This time, Rattler sprints up in the pocket, knowing he is about to take a hit. He throws on the run right before getting tackled and throws a dime in the back corner of the endzone. Once again, Rattler placed it in a spot where either his guy was getting the ball or nobody was. Hopefully, his NFL team can offer him more protection, but Rattler showed his toughness in college despite a leaky offensive line.


Decision Making

Rattler’s weakness was certainly decision-making. He is a gunslinger and will get the ball downfield, but at times, his decision-making is questionable at best. Rattler has thrown the ball into double or even triple coverage, trying to give his guy a shot. He needs a great quarterback coach at the next level who will help him make quality decisions consistently.

Getting the Ball out Quickly

Rattler was sacked 39 times in 2023, which was not all his fault. His offensive line definitely struggled, but Rattler held onto the ball too long. Maybe he was struggling to diagnose defenses quickly, but at the NFL level, you must get the ball out quickly to succeed.


Rattler has a lot of upside but needs to land in the right system. He reminds me of Baker Mayfield as a player and a person. I think he has the temperament to be the leader of an NFL locker room. He needs to land in a spot that will give him the chance to develop.

My favorite landing spots for Rattler are the Los Angeles Rams and the New York Jets. Both places would allow him to learn from elite QBs – Matthew Stafford and Aaron Rodgers. He could learn for a year or two and take over when they retire.

I’ll still be in on Rattler if he goes to the Denver Broncos or Las Vegas Raiders and is allowed to compete for the job immediately; however, I’d prefer a location where he can sit and learn. He has some flaws that he could iron out on the bench as he adjusts to the NFL game speed and their offensive system. I’m targeting Rattler in the early third rounds of Superflex rookie drafts because of his potential as a future starter in the NFL.

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