What To Do…
The NFL draft begins on Thursday night and the first round, as always, will see the rise of the quarterbacks.
Should they be drafted as highly as they ultimately will be? Probably not. But the demand is great and so the value becomes artificially inflated. People have compared this year’s group of quarterbacks with the Class of 1983 that yielded Hall of Famers John Elway, Jim Kelly and Dan Marino (and also busts Todd Blackledge and Tony Eason) and one very serviceable pro (Ken O’Brien), all in the first round. Those people should be questioned very intently about their eyesight.
Do you like Southern Cal’s Sam Darnold? Ah, small hands make him a fumbler. UCLA’s Josh Rosen? A little brittle. Wyoming’s Josh Allen? Big arm, but not accurate. Louisville’s Lamar Jackson? Great on the move, not an accurate passer. Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield? Huge production, bits of outrageous behavior on the field, too short (a bit shy of 6-foot-1).
Upside, downside. Teams like the quarterback-hungry Cleveland Browns, picking first overall and then fourth, and the New York Jets at No. 3, will likely take the bait and a quarterback. They haven’t won and can’t win without one but …
In 2014 the Browns picked Johnny Manziel in the first round. Instant disaster. In 2009 the Jets drafted Mark Sanchez, who devolved into a guy who couldn’t even hand off without bumping into a lineman (look up the infamous butt fumble).
Quarterbacks generate the excitement and rekindle home among forlorn fans (and Cleveland’s, after an 0-16 season and a 1-31 record the last two years) fit that bill.
Unfortunately, they come with no guarantee. They cannot win without good players around them. They’re constantly at risk of injury (note the prolonged absences of the Indianapolis Colts’ Andrew Luck and the Miami Dolphins’ Ryan Tannehill).
You want your team to take a quarterback? Good luck. You’ll need it.
November 13, 2018
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