I need to clarify a few things on QBs. First, I’m not against the Eagles taking a QB high. If the team has a bad season and ends up with a Top 10 pick, I’d love to get a franchise QB.
I’m also not delusional and saying that you’re as likely to find a QB in the mid-rounds as in the Top 10. A few of you, including Sam, tried to point that out to me.
As we’ve discussed the 2013 season, more than a few of you have talked about wanting the Eagles to lose so that the team can get a high pick and then use it on a QB. I get the mentality. That’s where many star QBs come from. The point of my post was that you didn’t have to spend a Top 10 pick on a QB in order to get a good player.
That hasn’t always been the case. There was a period when a lot of QBs taken from 11-32 felt like reaches. There was a decade or so when all but one QB taken in the 2nd round turned into a bust. The good one was Drew Brees. You had to go early 1st round or late round and hope. Things are changing. The position of QB is evolving.
I played high school football in the 1980s. No one threw the ball. You ran the veer or the wishbone or the power-I. A school in central NC started using the Run ‘n Shoot in the early 90s. They might as well have practiced witchcraft…until they started winning big. Then people quit sneering and started admiring them. Pretty soon a powerhouse school put in that offense and they won multiple state titles. I’m sure all 50 states have a similar story. Nowadays, it is common for high schools all over to throw the ball a ton.
That means that QBs and receivers are developing advanced passing game skills younger than ever. QBs don’t go to college to learn to throw the ball. They’re ready to go by the time they get there. They might have to adjust to the speed of the game or a more complex offense, but they are veterans of the passing game. It also helps that receivers are more advanced than ever. Dwight Clark caught 11 passes as a Senior at Clemson. Sammy Watkins had 11 catches after the first 2 games of his Clemson career. This is a completely different world.
The transition from college to pro football is easier than ever. Part of that is due to NFL teams embracing college plays instead of sticking to ancient playbooks that were completely foreign to the kids.
I think all of this is going to help teams find franchise QBs outside the Top 10 picks. In the old days, you needed the guy who was 6-3 or 6-4 and 220. He had to have a strong arm. He needed 30 starts in college and a certain pedigree. That’s not the case anymore. Just look at last year’s Super Bowl. You had Joe Flacco from Delaware and Colin Kaepernick from Nevada. Both were big and had rifle arms, but neither was a polished QB coming into the league. Kaepernick had poor passing skills since he played in the Pistol in college. Flacco faced small school competition and played in a shotgun-based passing attack. This was about as far from the standard pocket passer golden boy as you could get (Aikman, Elway, Mannings, Stafford, etc).
The players you’re going to take later in the 1st round or in rounds 2-4 are going to be more advanced than ever. That should give them a better chance of being successful in the NFL. That doesn’t mean spending a high pick on a QB is now a bad thing. The players at the top of the draft are the best prospects. You’d always love to have a shot at those guys.
I don’t think the Eagles need a Top 10 pick to find the right guy. I don’t think the team has to prepare some mega-package to move up for a QB. That said, if there is a player you covet, go get him. Just make sure the deal isn’t out of desperation. If you pay steak prices, make sure you get steak. You see times when it sure feels like a team talked themselves into liking a QB. That’s one position where you need to be ultra-choosy.
It used to be that finding a stud QB outside the early part of the draft was about like buying a lottery ticket. That’s changing. And hopefully it will benefit the Eagles if they look for a franchise QB in the upcoming draft.
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Sounds like Michael Vick will get the start on Sunday against the Giants.
The Giants won last night, but only because the Vikings were awful. I mean really awful.
The Eagles last home win came against the Giants. Makes sense that the team they beat to break the losing streak should also be the Giants. And the Eagles better win this. I can’t deal with another home loss.