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.


  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.

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

    Whitehurst would be nice.

  3. 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.

  4. Anonymous9:19 AM

    I think Omar Jacobs is the guy for us.