Josh Rosen is Jewish. And a 'millennial.' Does the NFL care? – Washington Post

Early Lead

April 16, 2018 at 7:00 AM

UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen has slipped in NFL mock drafts after controversial remarks by his former coach Jim Mora. (Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press)

Josh Rosen sat for an interview for an ESPN The Magazine cover story and was immediately confronted with the flaws that seemingly will undo him as an NFL quarterback, perceptions he cannot control.

“You’re a cocky, jerkish, overly opinionated rich kid who’s too smart and has too many outside interests for his own good,” ESPN senior writer Sam Alipour posed to the UCLA junior.

That characterization stemmed from remarks made by former Bruins Coach Jim Mora, who claimed Rosen would not “fit” in some NFL cities because of a lack of a “blue-collar, gritty attitude.”

Mora also said Rosen could be a “franchise-changer” if coached correctly, but his mixed assessment — along with a strong pro day from Southern California’s Sam Darnold — sent Rosen slipping down most analysts’ mock drafts from the potential No. 1 overall pick to somewhere in the top 10. Some observers believe Mora’s critiques leaned on racist tropes.

“This is classic anti-Semitism,” ESPN personality Tony Kornheiser said on his podcast last week. “Absolutely classic anti-Semitism that says, ‘We don’t want this guy. This guy’s too smart.’ ”

“Wait a second,” Kornheiser continued. “Peyton Manning and Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees, they’re really smart. Russell Wilson is really smart. There’s no such thing as too smart.”

Rosen is smart. He had a 4.3 GPA in high school at St. John Bosco Prep, a veritable quarterback factory outside Los Angeles. His dream school was Stanford. When he didn’t get a scholarship offer from the Cardinal, he settled for UCLA.

He is relatively well-off and well-connected. His mother is a former journalist and the great-great-granddaughter of Joseph Wharton

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