Should rookie QBs start right away?
Posted Apr. 28 at 08:35 AM
They’re just about ready to start the draft, and expectations are that there will be seven quarterbacks taken in the first round. Cam Newton and Blaine Gabbert should go early (I guess), then there’s a whole bunch of teams looking for quarterbacks and many prospects with some talent.
I will be interested to see how many teams opt to go quarterback early, and how many try the Drew Brees strategy, figuring there are enough good quarterbacks that they’ll get a good enough prospect in the early second round. (The Chargers, recall, opted not to take Michael Vick No. 1 overall, trading down a few spots for LaDainian Tomlinson, then picking Brees with the first choice in the second round).
The 49ers, Cardinals, Vikings, Titans, Bengals, Bills and Washington are all in that boat. They could go early, or could wait until the early second round (or perhaps trade into the late first). One of the best mock draft analysts, Rick Gosselin, says he thinks three of the second-tier quarterbacks will go early. He’s got Jake Locker going 8th (Tennessee), Christian Ponder 10th (Washington) and Andrew Dalton 12th (Minnesota).
We’ll find out soon enough where all these quarterbacks are going.
One of the big-picture ideas we’ll hear get kicked around with this group over the coming months is the debate over whether they should play right away. Carson Palmer and Philip Rivers, the short version goes, were successful because they had the luxury of sitting right away.
But is that really the case?
Not really – at least not as far as I can see. Below is the list of all quarterbacks in the last 20 years who attempted under 100 passes as rookies. Many of these guys – Andre Ware, David Klingler, etc. – didn’t start as rookies and didn’t have good careers.
I don’t see a big groundswell of success being caused by players sitting right away. The hit-miss ratio looks pretty similar to what you might get from the starters.
Peyton Manning, Sam Bradford, Ben Roethlisberger, Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco and Mark Sanchez all started right away.
I think the answer can depend on the quarterback, the team and the coaching staff. Some rookies are probably ready to start early, and others probably would benefit from working with a veteran for a season.
FIRST ROUNDERS WHO ATTEMPTED UNDER 100 PASSES, 1990-2010
1990 no Andre Ware (7) Lions
1991 no Dan McGwire (16) Seahawks
1991 no Todd Marinovich (24) Raiders
1992 no Dave Brown (supplemental) Giants
1992 no David Klinger (6) Bengals
1994 -- Trent Dilfer (6) Buccaneers
1995 yes Steve McNair (3) Oilers
1997 no Jim Druckenmiller (26) 49ers
1999 yes Daunte Culpepper (11) Vikings
2000 yes Chad Pennington (18) Jets
2003 yes Carson Palmer (1) Bengals
2003 no Rex Grossman (22) Bears
2004 no J.P. Losman (22) Bills
2004 yes Philip Rivers (4) Giants
2005 no Jason Campbell (25) Redskins
2005 yes Aaron Rodgers (24) Packers
2007 no Brady Quinn (22) Browns
2007 no JaMarcus Russell (1) Raiders
2010 -- Tim Tebow (25) Broncos
SECOND ROUNDERS WHO ATTEMPTED UNDER 100 PASSES, 1990-2010
1991 no Browning Nagle (34) Jets
1991 yes Brett Favre (33) Falcons
1992 no Matt Blundin (40) Chiefs
1992 no Tony Sacca (46) Cardinals
1995 -- Kordell Stewart (60) Steelers
1995 no Todd Collins (45) Bills
2001 no Marques Tuiasosopo (59) Raiders
2001 yes Drew Brees (32) Chargers
2006 no Kellen Clemens (49) Jets
2006 no Tarvaris Jackson (64) Vikings
2007 -- Kevin Kolb (36) Eagles
2007 -- Drew Stanton (43) Lions
2008 no Brian Brohm (56) Packers
2008 -- Chad Henne (57) Dolphins
2009 no Pat White (44) Dolphins
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