Kevin O'Connell

QB · San Diego State
Kevin O'Connell literally put himself on the map as a senior. Of all quarterbacks invited to the NFL Combine, he was the only one not listed as a potential pro prospect in preseason evaluations. After working under the tutelage of former NFL quarterback and present Aztecs head coach, Chuck Long, teams now view O'Connell as one of the finer athletes at his position eligible for the 2008 draft. O'Connell is a rarity in college sports, having served as team captain in each of his four seasons with the Aztecs. He is the first player in school history to lead the team in both passing and rushing in the same season (2007). He holds the school career record for yards rushing (1,312) and touchdowns rushing (19) by a quarterback. A dual threat, O'Connell also showed off his strong arm for the Aztecs. He finished his career second in school history by completing 664-of-1,151 passes (57.69%) and gaining 9,001 yards in total offense. His 7,689 yards passing placed him third on the SDSU all-time record chart, while his 46 touchdown tosses rank fourth in Aztec annals. O'Connell was a standout in both football and basketball at La Costa Canyon High School. After missing a good portion of his junior year with injury, O'Connell was named All-Region by Super Prep and honorable mention All-Region by Prep Star. He added All-League, All-North County and All-San Diego accolades. In his final season, O'Connell passed for 1,950 yards and 19 touchdowns for the 7-4 Mavericks. He also ran for 310 yards. During his injury-shortened junior campaign, he threw for 980 yards and seven scores on 56 completions. During his prep career, he earned three letters in football and two more in basketball. O'Connell turned down a scholarship offer from Colorado, spending his 2003 season redshirting at San Diego State. He was named team captain midway through the 2004 season, taking over at quarterback for the final five games while competing in nine contests. He ranked third on the team with 347 yards and a score on 73 carries (4.8-yard average). He connected on 115-of-236 tosses (48.7%) for 1,328 yards, nine touchdowns and nine interceptions, amassing 1,675 yards in total offense. As a sophomore, O'Connell started all 12 games. His 3,065 yards in total offense rank ninth on the school single-season list. He threw for 2,663 yards on 233-of-375 chances (62.1%), as he produced 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He also proved to be a fearless runner, ranking second on the team with 402 yards (school season-record for a quarterback) and five touchdowns on 140 carries (2.9-yard average). However, in addition to his 12 interceptions, he turned the ball over five times on 12 fumbles. O'Connell's 2006 season was cut short by a right thumb ligament injury that required surgery. He was hurt in the season opener Texas-El Paso, missing the team's next six contests. He appeared in seven games, starting four. He hit on 59-of-101 attempts (58.4%) for 635 yards, including five interceptions and three touchdowns. He turned the ball over twice on three fumbles and rushed 48 times for 155 yards (3.2-yard average) with two scores. In 2007, O'Connell earned All-Mountain West Conference second-team honors, becoming the first Aztec quarterback to be named first or second team all-conference since Dan McGwire was a first team pick in 1990, when SDSU played in the Western Athletic Conference. He also became the first player to lead the Aztecs in both rushing and passing in the same season, as he ranked first in the MWC and 23rd nationally in total offense per game (289.2 yards per game) and was second in the league in passing average (255.2 ypg). Overall, O'Connell completed 257-of-439 passes (58.5%) for 3,063 yards, 15 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He paced the Aztecs with 135 carries for a school record (for quarterbacks, breaking his own 2005 mark with 408 yards (3.0-yard average), setting another SDSU quarterback record with 11 touchdowns on the ground. He even got in the receiving act, catching two passes for 44 yards. His 3,471 yards in total offense rank fourth on the school chart. In 40 games at San Diego State, the four-time team captain gained 7,689 yards on 664 of 1,151 passes (57.69%), 46 touchdowns and 34 interceptions. He totaled 1,312 yards on 396 carries (3.3-yard average) and 19 touchdowns. He added 44 yards on two receptions and a pair of solo tackles. He touched the ball 1,547 times for 9,001 yards in total offense, an average of 222.03 yards per game.


Impressive-looking athlete with excellent size, muscle development, long limbs and solid physique for the position...Very mobile for an athlete his size and has the ability to be just as big a threat with his feet and his throwing arm...Has the agility to slide away from pressure...Adequate rhythm passer who carries out his fakes well and has improved his timing as a senior, doing a decent job of hitting receivers in stride on crossing routes...Needs to show more patience in the pocket, but is adept at throwing on the move, showing functional zip on his passes when throwing from non-set positions...Throws the deep ball with ease and spots his open receivers away from the coverage, but needs to learn how to generate better zip on his deep tosses (has the arm strength, but his long throws tend to flutter when he fails to step into the throw)...Improved his placement throwing in tight situations, reducing his interception totals the last two years (13 over the last two seasons compared to 21 the first two)...Has a nice feel for finding the crease when he has to abandon the pocket and run...Despite his height, he is a surprisingly good scrambler...Has the athletic ability to be very effective in the shotgun...Confident leader with a strong personality, showing good toughness absorbing punishing shots when his protection breaks down (would rather buy a sack than throw the ball into a crowd, but would be better off just throwing the ball away)...Shows good quickness driving away from the center while setting up, demonstrating good body control needed to throw on the move (must work on his footwork)...Carries the ball chest-high and is always ready to throw...Has quick wrist action in his delivery...Has developed a better sense for adjusting his release based on available windows...Can drill the ball in the seam in the short-area passing game, but sometimes puts too much zip behind those throws...Was much more effective in keeping his receivers within their routes by feathering the ball to them on long bombs late in 2007...Can also hold for placements...With his size, he is capable of scanning the field without defenders obstructing his view...Needs mechanical refinement, but has the arm strength to rival Delaware's Joe Flacco...Has better touch on his underneath throws when he sets his feet...Is a threat running with the ball, showing good slide agility to avoid punishment on the move, but also has the power to break arm tackles...Even with his tall frame, he has good hip shake and wiggle to make the initial tackler miss...Has developed more patience in the pocket as a senior, making better route progression reads (went 17 quarters before throwing an interception during one span in 2007).

compares to

MATT CASSEL-New England...O'Connell is a more mobile passer, but like Cassel, he is going to need time and patient coaching to add technique and mechanical refinement. He is a rare-sized athlete with great mobility in the pocket, but his delivery is a mess and his footwork leaves a lot to be desired. He forces a lot of throws and needs generate better touch on his short-area throws and improve the zip on his deep passes. If a team preaches patience and has an established veteran in place to allow O'Connell several years to develop, he could be a good one. Rushing him, however, might render any pick used on O'Connell a wasted selection.


Despite his athletic ability, size and arm strength, he is very inconsistent with his delivery, needing to improve his footwork, as he tends to throw off balance and off his back foot too often...Must develop better zip on his deep throws and not generate so much velocity throwing into the short-to-intermediate areas...Has good mobility throwing on the move, but needs to see threats better firing downfield and is not always alert to backside pressure, as many of his fumbles (20 in the last three years) have come after getting hit from the blind side...Has good command of the team and shows courage, but gets into "home run" mindset, trying to force big plays and instead makes mistakes...Must develop a better rhythm on his passes, especially with his footwork...Has never played in anything more than a simplified system and must become more alert on the field, as he does not usually make quick and proper reads...Seems to try to aim the ball rather than hitting his receivers in stride...Might need more than a few years to develop a good feel for reading defenses, as he must do a better job of scanning the field, as he tends to look too long at his primary targets, taking unnecessary punishment when the pocket collapses...Needs to improve his timing patterns to prevent receivers from having to adjust...Will need more refinement in his delivery, as he does not open and close his shoulders quickly...Overthrows at times on fades and post patterns.

2006: Suffered a torn ligament in his right thumb during the third quarter of the season opener vs. Texas-El Paso (8/31), undergoing surgery on Sept. 4...Missed the Wisconsin (9/16), Utah (9/23), San Jose State (9/30), Brigham Young (10/07), Air Force (10/21) and Cal Poly (10/28) games.

Combine: 4.61 in the 40-yard dash

1.6 10-yard dash

2.71 20-yard dash

4.38 20-yard shuttle

7.01 three-cone drill

31-inch vertical jump

9'5" broad jump

Bench pressed 225 pounds 20 times

34 1/8-inch arm length

8 7/8-inch hands.

Attended La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad, Cal.) High School, lettering three times in football and twice in basketball

After missing a good portion of his junior year due to an injury, O'Connell was named All-Region by Super Prep and honorable mention All-Region by Prep Star

Added All-League, All-North County and All-San Diego accolades

In his final season, O'Connell passed for 1,950 yards and 19 touchdowns for the 7-4 Mavericks

Also ran for 310 yards. During his injury-shortened junior campaign, he threw for 980 yards and seven scores on 56 completions.

Political Science major

Son of Suzanne and Bill O'Connell

Father is employed by the FBI

Born 5/25/85 in Knoxville, Tenn

Resides in Carlsbad, California.

Physical Attributes:

Proj Rd: 4-5
Height: 6-5
Weight: 225.0
Forty: 4.61
Wingspan: --

Pro Day Results:

Cone: --
Bench: --
Shuttle: --
10: --
20: --
40: --
BJ: --
VJ: --

Combine Results:

Cone: 7.01
Bench: --
Shuttle: 4.38
10: 1.59
20: 2.72
40: 4.64
BJ: 09'05"
VJ: 31.0