Matt Barkley is a FRAUD.
Barkley is a classic drop-back passer with sound throwing mechanics and a smooth delivery. He shows a compact windup and an over-the-top throwing motion with a quick release. Barkley displays good (but not great) arm strength on intermediate and deep throws. Although his balls tend to flutter on out-breaking routes that are longer than 15 yards, he shows adequate zip and velocity on his throws. Barkley can certainly fit balls into tight windows on intermediate throws inside the numbers, but he lacks the overpowering arm strength to complete the deep comeback from the opposite hash on a rope against tight coverage. The exceptional speed and quickness of NFL defensive backs will result in break-ups or interceptions, unless Barkley shows extraordinary timing and anticipation, releasing the ball well before the receiver comes out of his break.
On deep throws, Barkley shows a 50-to-55-yard throwing range. He has routinely connected with Lee and Nelson Agholor on vertical routes down the field. While most of those completions have resulted from his exceptional timing and anticipation, Barkley has shown the arm strength to throw the ball over the top of the defense when defenders squat on routes. This was particularly evident against Oregon on Nov. 3, when he connected on 75- and 76-yard touchdowns on deep post routes to Lee and Agholor, respectively. In my mind, these throws certainly squelched some of the concern about his deep-ball ability. However, the fallout from "Inflate Gate" (a USC ball boy was reprimanded following that game for deflating footballs, which he later admitted to doing; the use of underinflated balls makes it easier for quarterbacks to throw the ball down the field with greater zip and velocity) could alter that opinion.
With the arm talent to make most of the throws at the next level, Barkley shouldn't have a problem succeeding as a starting quarterback, if he plays to his strengths.