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#pounditFriday, May 7, 2021

Famed throwing coach calls out Chris Mortensen for his Justin Fields take

Justin Fields

Chris Mortensen is the latest ESPN analyst to indicate teams may have some concerns about selecting Justin Fields with a high pick in the upcoming draft, and famed throwing coach Tom House strongly disagrees with Mortensen’s take.

During a special on ESPN’s “SportsCenter” on Tuesday, Mortensen said playing baseball in high school may have “messed with (Fields’) mechanics a little bit.” Fields was a standout baseball player before he got to Ohio State and also considered playing in college.

House was among those who criticized Mortensen for the implication that playing baseball hurts a quarterback’s mechanics. House said all of the quarterbacks he has worked with have played baseball and pointed out that Patrick Mahomes was a star on the diamond.

House is perhaps best known for working with Tom Brady, who was drafted by the Montreal Expos before he chose to focus on his football career. Other star quarterbacks who were drafted by MLB teams include Dan Marino, Steve McNair, John Elway and Russell Wilson. House said he will always advocate for quarterbacks to play baseball as long as they possibly can.

Another ESPN analyst was already skewered for sharing some concerns about Fields, though he said he is high on the former Buckeye and was just passing along information he gathered from sources. Either way, there is obviously plenty of interest in Fields.

Most analysts are predicting that Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson and Mac Jones will go ahead of Fields in the draft, but one surprise team could move up the board for him.

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