Calling himself a mix of Tom Brady's mind and Cam Newton's body, former Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer says he has the ability to be "the greatest quarterback to ever play."
"No one else can do what I can do," Kizer told USA Today Sports in an interview that was published Thursday. "And I've truly figured out in this [draft] process, if I can maximize all my potential in every aspect of the game -- this is bold -- I do have the ability to be the greatest quarterback to ever play.
"Imagine taking Brady's intellect and Brady's preparation and putting it on a guy with Cam Newton's body. Why can't I be the greatest? The only thing stopping me from is me. That's what's driving me now."
Kizer tweeted later Thursday that reaction to his remarks have been taken "way out of context."
Sheesh😳 Way out of context... but alright https://t.co/6zGztV08Bu
— DeShone Kizer (@DKizer_14) April 20, 2017
Kizer, who is 6-foot-4¼ and 233 pounds, is projected as the No. 27 pick by ESPN Insider Mel Kiper, while ESPN's Todd McShay sees him going in the second round as the No. 33 pick. Both project Kizer as the fourth quarterback off the board, behind North Carolina's Mitchell Trubisky, Clemson's Deshaun Watson and Texas Tech's Patrick Mahomes II.
While Kiper and McShay raved about Kizer's talent, they joined Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly in saying Kizer is a raw, unfinished product who will need time to develop in the NFL.
Earlier this month, Kelly said Kizer should have stayed with the Fighting Irish for another season rather than turning pro as a redshirt sophomore.
"He should still be in college. ... He needs more time to grow in so many areas, not just on the field but off the field," Kelly told SiriusXM NFL Radio.
Kelly, however, touted Kizer as having the best skill set among NFL quarterback prospects, saying he would fit well if a team can draft him and give him time to develop.
"He's got a strong arm. Physically he's gifted," Kelly said. "He's got all those tools that you're looking for at the quarterback position."
Kizer started 23 games for the Fighting Irish, going 12-11, including 4-8 last season. He finished his college career with 5,809 yards passing with 47 touchdowns and 19 interceptions, adding 992 rushing yards and 18 scores on the ground.
Aside from his physical skills, Kizer told USA Today Sports he believes his preparation and football IQ also set him apart from the other quarterbacks in the draft.
"Name a college quarterback who goes into the game-plan meetings on Monday and throws his notes at the coaches," Kizer said. "No one else game plans the way I do. No one else prepares the way I do. No one else knows football the way I do. No one else is as big as I am. No one else is as powerful a runner as I am. Pat Mahomes might throw the ball 80 yards and I can only throw the ball 72, but I guarantee he can't throw an out route the way I can."