Are NFL Teams Putting Too Much Stock In Rookie Quarterbacks?
I think they are. There has been way more misses than hits when it comes to drafting quarterbacks at the top of the draft. Unlike college basketball where the top picks are one and done, we usually get to see a pretty extensive body of work from college football players before they enter the draft. I use the term ‘usually’ loosely because there have been a few exceptions, but we’ll talk about that in a later blog.
I totally agree with the masses that the quarterback position is the most important position on the field but some people place the stock of the QB too high above the rest of the positions. Years ago it probably could have been justified to take multiple risks on getting a top notch quarterback every year or two until you get it right, but in today’s game it doesn’t make as much sense for an array of reasons. Let’s be real here, the Broncos won the Super Bowl with mediocre quarterback play.
I’m not saying that teams drafting at the top shouldn’t pick a quarterback, I’m just saying that if you’re going to pick a quarterback with the number one or number two pick in the draft it should only be for guys like Jameis Winston or Andrew Luck, the type of guys that have proven themselves in pro style systems for multiple years. The thought of picking a player at the top of the draft based on the theory that he has a high ceiling is a bit strange to me.
Who Should They Pick?
I’m a really big fan of the other premium positions in the NFL, the LT, WR, OLB/DE and CB. As I stated earlier, the Broncos won the Super Bowl with mediocre QB play but what wasn’t mediocre is their defense. They had ballers on every level of the defense. The Bronco’s defense carried them the entire season and ultimately was the main reason they won the Super Bowl.
As for the offensive side of the ball in the NFL, we’ve seen more and more left tackles get big money and rightfully so, they protect the blindside of the highest paid player on the field.
As far as the WR’s go, well you just can’t have enough good ones. With all the great teams that have won the Super Bowl in the last 20 years, the one that sticks out to me the most is the St. Louis Rams. They were the greatest show on turf and they had multiple weapons on the offensive side of the ball with seasoned quarterback Kurt Warner, wide receivers Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce and running back Marshall Faulk. The diverse skill set that Marshall Faulk displayed during his career is becoming more sought after in today’s game because more teams are trying to duplicate what the Rams did during those years.
I don’t deny the notion that quarterbacks are supposed to be the leaders of the team and that a team is in a better position if they have a good one. What I don’t buy is that you have to have Aaron Rogers or Tom Brady to win in the NFL.
A well rounded team with a solid defense seems to be a better recipe for success. So yes, teams should pull the trigger if they have a prospect like Andrew Luck sitting there but if they have a need in one of the other four priority positions, there shouldn’t be any hesitation to pull the trigger. But just because a top notch prospect isn’t a priority position guy, teams need to think twice before they make that call. If there is a player in the green room with Marshall Faulk type talent, don’t pass on him because you’re “SUPPOSED” to take a quarterback.