Everyone is a draft expert when it comes to QB, because they are the easiest players to watch during a game. Still, we may like one player over another, yet we need perspective on: (1) who is better value and (2) where they can project to as a pro.
This year, there are two major takeaways:
NUMBER 1: there are no “great” Quarterbacks.
Yet once again, the parade comes to town every April, and NFL teams in need of a QB try desperately to fill their need. Desperation is never good in the draft. We have shown with our own analytical work and the work of others that THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE IS OVERVALUED. Yet in Round 1 we see it time and again how teams will trade up to grab the QB they covet.
None of us were born yesterday. We all understand the need for a QB in today’s NFL. The problem is when the need outstrips the talent, and that is what we have in 2011. Wonder’s 2011 Quarterbacks has Gabbert and Newton as 20th and 25th for Value. They will probably end up having an overall ranking (1 to 200 of the draft order) of 12th and 18th in the draft for best player available, and yet both will go much higher, maybe the Top 5. The bottomline is that Wonder does not believe than anyone in this crop is going to be a superstar.
NUMBER 2: there are a lot of “good” prospects this year.
The irony for those in need of a QB is that they will be the ones who go apesh*t fighting over the Gabberts, Newtons and Lockers, yet there are a number of players under the radar who have a shot at sticking in the pros. Guys like Kaepernick, Dalton, Enderle and Devlin may not be household names but they have potential. If you haven’t figured this out, it is worth repeating here: WONDER LOVES POTENTIAL. These guys are like cheap call options, lottery tickets. Of course plenty do not make it. But for teams that have patience and are willing to groom these players, they may get the savior of their franchise. So remember, long after the 1st round of the draft is over, this is when the draft begins.