Quarterbacks Left Disappointed
The glamour position took a big hit in New York City this weekend as many of the big name quarterbacks had to take a rather large slice of humble pie, or in Johnny Manziel’s case a humble Bud Light, as mostly all of the 2014 QB’s saw their projected draft position come and go during a draft where teams opted to wait until absolutely possible to grab players they one day hope to be starting quarterbacks.
Other than Blake Bortles, who surprisingly went third to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the likes of Johnny Manziel (22nd, Browns), Teddy Bridgewater (32nd, Vikings) and Derek Carr (36th Raiders, more on Carr later) all had to wait a bit longer than they and their agents may have expected after their college careers ended at a point when the media was fawning over the big names as high first round talents with a wide array of teams looking for quarterbacks. Perhaps they all should have expected teams trying to squeeze out as much value out of their drafts as possible, with the Browns and Vikings opting to wait until the late first round and the Raiders smartly opting to wait until their second time on the clock to select Carr.
Even lesser names such as SEC standouts Zach Mettenberger and AJ McCarron as well as Pitt’s Tom Savage fell a lot lower than they anticipated as there was a significant gap between where the media felt the 2014 QB’s would be drafted and where NFL front offices saw the value.
What does the drop in draft position for the 2014 quarterback class mean? Other than a loss in money thanks to the NFL’s new rookie salary structure, nothing much. The players taken highly are still considered as potential starters for their prospective teams and the mid-round picks of Savage, Mettenberger and McCarron are still slightly longshots to develop into franchise QB’s. What is interesting is how NFL front offices kept their cool and waited as long as possible (with the exception of the Jaguars) to take prospects at a position where sitting a season is often expected. Could it be the future model for front offices, likely enticed by the successes of Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson as successes outside of the top picks? Only time will tell, but the 2015 class of quarterbacks may think differently when it comes to believing their hype if slated as top first round picks.