Thursday, March 30, 2006

The future Viking QB

According to the Trib, Brad Childress says the Vikings will certainly be taking a QB in the draft (but since Childress talking about Culpepper still seems to be the lead story for the Vikes, you have to find that information in the middle of a lot of pointlessness about a player who isn't a Viking anymore).

Childress also suggests they won't be taking a big-name early pick, but a developmental quarterback later in the draft (though why would anybody trust anything anybody says before a draft?).

I do think the Vikes should take a QB with a 2nd or 3rd round pick. Yes, it would be exciting to trade up and get a player like Matt Leinart. But quarterback is a crapshoot. Draft a QB in the later rounds, and you never know--he just might win a Super Bowl. And if he doesn't turn out, all you've done is use a later round draft pick. But if you draft a QB in the first round, you've got maybe--maybe--a 50/50 shot of him being any good at all. If he is good, great. If he's not good, then you've just wasted a first round pick and probably set your franchise back several years trying to make it work.

With quarterback such an unpredictable position, I support trying to use later, low-risk picks to try and win the crapshoot, while using first round picks on more dependable positions (relatively speaking). Unless you think you've got a can't miss QB, use your first rounders on something else.

Just look at first round QBs: it's totally hit-or-miss. In 1999, 5 QBs went in the first round: 2 became Pro Bowlers, one was mediocre, and the other two completely sucked. In 2000, the best QB drafted was a sixth-rounder. In 2001, the Chargers missed risking an early pick on Ron Mexico, ended up with the best RB in the league, and still managed to get a Pro Bowl QB at the beginning of the second round. 2002 featured three first-round QBs, but third-rounder Josh McCown has shown as much promise as any of those three. '03, '04, and '05 are still too early to judge.

Nothing is guaranteed in the draft--no matter what player or position you draft, you could end up with a dud. But quarterback is especially risky. If you blow an early pick on a defensive lineman or a wide receiver...well, it's a blown pick, but you're basically just getting no contribution. If you blow an early pick on a quarterback, chances are he's losing you games. It's a devestating risk.

If the Vikes trade up for Leinart because they think he's a sure-thing, I'll support it. If they trade up for Vince Young, I'll be nervous (a QB like him seems like a great potential pick, not a sure-thing pick). If they trade up for Jay Cutler, I'll probably scream and throw objects in anger (while maintaining my blind hopeful optimism inside). If they draft a QB in the second or third round, it won't be terribly exciting, but I'll smile and quietly hope they've just drafted the QB that will lead the Vikings to Super Bowl glory.

5 comments:

  1. joe montana - 3rd round; tom brady - 6th round; favre - 2nd round...

    ryan leif, akili smith, rick mirer, etc.

    any reason to draft a qb early?

    the pro game is just too different from college.

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  2. Craig Basanez! Charlie Whitehurst!

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  3. Two other advantages to low round QB's: significantly less guaranteed money and zero expectations to immediately play and thrive.

    Whitehurst would be nice.

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  4. The problem with this draft is that the drop off after that top 3 is very substantial.

    Croyle couldn't even get his college team to score points. There's that guy from Bowling Green but he's a pick for potential. Drew Olsen? Whitehurst? Shockley? I'm not really that impressed.

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  5. Peter9:19 AM

    I think Omar Jacobs is the guy for us.

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