The quarterback who owns most of the University of Wyoming’s passing records is a fan of the current Cowboys’ signal-caller.
Casey Bramlet, a Wheatland High graduate, played from 1999-03 at Wyoming and owns the Cowboys’ career records for passing yards (9,684), completions (767) and attempts (1,378). He also is second in touchdown passes (56).
Bramlet was the last Wyoming quarterback selected in the NFL Draft, picked in the seventh round with the 218th overall pick in 2004 by the Cincinnati Bengals. Bramlet played for six NFL teams during his six-year pro career. He also played in the Canadian Football League and in NFL Europe.
In Laramie recently for Wyoming’s alumni touch football game and the Cowboys’ spring game, he had the opportunity to see the next highly touted Wyoming quarterback – redshirt sophomore Josh Allen, the former Firebaugh High and Reedley College star.
“He is the real deal,” Bramlet told the Wyoming Tribune Eagle. “He can make all the throws, and not just the throws outside of the pocket rolling out and throwing it 50 yards down the field.
“He can make the play-action, 7-step drop, back foot in the ground and throw an 18-yard comeback that looks effortless. Those are the throws you have to be able to make at the next level.”
Bramlet, who now lives and works in Casper, said he came to all of Wyoming’s home games last season and watched the Cowboys play at Nebraska, as well as in the Poinsettia Bowl in San Diego against Brigham Young.
That was Allen’s first season as Wyoming’s starter, and he burst upon the college football scene by completing 56 percent of his passes for 3,203 yards with 28 touchdowns and 15 interceptions, along with 523 rushing yards and seven touchdowns. Allen’s 3,726 yards of total offense are the third-most in a season in Wyoming history, and his passing yards rank fifth.
Allen earned second team All-Mountain West honors, and plenty of attention from NFL scouts. He contemplated turning pro after last season, and some projected him as a first-round NFL draft pick.
Allen decided to return to Laramie, and based on his 2016 numbers, he is on pace to have his name atop nearly all of Wyoming’s passing and total offense career records if he stays through his senior year.
However, if Allen has a 2017 season that is similar – or better – to 2016, he is expected to turn pro and be among the first quarterbacks taken in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Now that he has been in the offense for a full year, has another spring under his belt and is a true leader out there, I want to see him take that next step as a leader and in the huddle. former
Wyoming quarterback Casey Bramlet on current Cowboys star Josh Allen
Bramlet thinks Allen has what it takes to play in the NFL, and not just from a physical standpoint as Allen is 6-foot-5, 233 pounds, mobile, athletic and has a big arm.
“One thing that will help him is he plays in more of a pro-style offense, where most of college football has moved toward spread schemes,” Bramlet said.
“He has taken snaps under center. He has been in a huddle and made adjustments at the line. Those things will help him and not be so much of an adjustment in the NFL.”
Allen said prior to and after spring drills that he would like to improve his completion percentage from last season, along with his decision-making and his overall approach to studying the game. Allen said he made good strides in those areas during the spring, although in two scrimmages and the spring game Allen completed only 50 percent of his passes.
“The first season playing in a system, you’re playing on instinct,” Bramlet said. “If the first guy is not there, you’re scrambling and making plays. Now that he has been in the offense for a full year, has another spring under his belt and is a true leader out there, I want to see him take that next step as a leader and in the huddle.
“Things like making the right checks and picking up the blitz. I’m hoping we don’t see him scramble as much this year because he’s going through his reads and knows where his check-downs are. Those are the next steps I think we'll see him take.”
Bramlet said he met Allen when Wyoming scrimmaged April 8 in Casper, and he enjoyed talking and getting to know him.
As far as making comparisons between Allen and guys he saw play in the NFL, Bramlet said Allen compares favorably arm strength-wise to Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco and the Arizona Cardinals’ Carson Palmer.
“They can make every throw, and they trust that they can make those throws,” Bramlet said. “They throw the ball to guys who look covered, but they throw it up high so their guy is the only one that can get it. Those are throws most players that don’t make it to next level won’t make, or won’t even try to make, because they think their guy is covered.
“In the NFL, you have to make those throws. Anyone can throw it to a guy that is wide open.”