My top five QBs

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My top five QBs
Mon May 05, 2014 3:00 pm
  • Obviously, my opinions, I very much doubt these will be the first five drafted:

    1. Johnny Manziel.

    Extremely rare feel for the game and terrific leader. Improvisational genius. Might see a spike in interceptions in the NFL from his risk taking nature, but if Andrew Luck and Andy Dalton can throw picks and win games, this guy can for sure.


    2. Jimmy Garappolo.

    I know this looks way too high, but the more I watch him the more I see Aaron Rodgers melded with Tony Romo. Excellent feel for the game, great improviser, very active feet that helps him set quickly, very accurate, very smart. Mobile.

    3. Teddy Bridgewater.

    Really smart QB who almost has it all, though it would be nice if he wasn't built like a twig. Usually QBs as skinny as Bridgewater tend to fear pressure a little more, so he might need a team with good protection. He's a very natural QB so he could be good even as a rookie with a dialed back playbook.

    4. Connor Shaw.

    In reality, Shaw will probably be a UDFA and the odds of him ever starting a regular season game are pretty low. Shaw doesn't have a good arm and is under-sized. He is more than mobile enough though (one of the best forties in the draft among QBs), and his instincts and feel for the game are second only to Manziel. Very smart player who threw just one interception last season while playing for a high ranked team in the SEC. Terrific leader. Reputed to be a very hard worker. Wins a lot of tough games. The similarities to Russell Wilson are pretty obvious.

    More than the wins, it's the numbers that jump out. 24 TD, 1 Int, 8.6 YPA. In the SEC. He looks the part too with his footwork, mechanics, and habits. Only reason I don't have Shaw higher is because it is likely a lack of opportunity will doom his career.

    5. Tahj Boyd.

    After Shaw there are a bunch of QBs bunched together. I know Boyd isn't perfect, but of the group he seems best equipped for the new NFL.

    Boyd is mobile and can improvise well. He's not the greatest decision maker sometimes, and in a game where it's hard to separate QB performance from WR performance, it's worth nothing that his WR group was the best in football the last two years. It's possible he's a mediocre QB made to look good by throwing to future NFL stars.
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Re: My top five QBs
Mon May 05, 2014 3:38 pm
  • Wow, that's an interesting list. Very cogent reasons to explain your list too. Compared to the
    "conventional wisdom" of most writers, this is a fresh breeze. Conner Shaw,... now we're having some fun.

    I honestly feel, with three days to go, that if Houston keeps the first pick, it will be Johnny football.
    If I owned a team and wanted to fill the seats and also generate media buzz, he would be my guy.
    J.J. can take care of the rough stuff.
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Re: My top five QBs
Mon May 05, 2014 3:51 pm
  • If you see this much in Shaw to rank him higher than Bortles and Carr, what's holding him back? What do NFL teams see that will limit his opportunities?

    I'm not doubting you, just asking out of curiousity because I know nothing about him.
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Re: My top five QBs
Mon May 05, 2014 3:52 pm
  • Like the inclusion of Shaw. What's your feel on Carr? By far the best arm in the draft, mature, mobile, and has the production. Also played in a pro style offense as a sophomore. I personally really like him the more I see of him, however the USC game left a bad taste in my mouth.
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Re: My top five QBs
Mon May 05, 2014 4:00 pm
  • Great list, Kip. What's your thoughts on Bortles.

    I haven't watched as much on QBs since we drafted Wilson (such a good feeling!), but my overall impression is that the QB class might only a handful of eventual starters, with only two or 3 long-term. Hope you don't mind adding my own top 5 for shits and giggles.

    1. Teddy Bridgewater: Protects the ball, makes good decisions, solid fundamentals, gets deep into his progressions, and gets the ball to the right players. In the right system, like a team with a philosophy similar to Seattle's, he can be a Superbowl winning QB. Can start Day 1. Will never dominate the league as a one-man machine, though. Top 15 pick.

    2. Johnny Manziel: Such an exciting player. He'll win games with his arm and legs, he'll lose games with his risky style of play. He's Brett Farve-esque in that sense. He can be special at the next level, but he'll have to learn when to protect the ball instead of looking for the big play. Also needs to learn how to take less hits. Top 10 pick.

    3. Blake Bortles: For a big man, he has surprisingly good mobility. I really like his demeanor. Can place the ball accurately on his receivers and has exceptional pocket awareness. Needs to improve his timing throws. Sometimes attempts to fit the ball into tight windows too late in his reads. Not a day 1 starter, imo. First round pick.

    4. Tahj Boyd: A leader who can take over games with his arm and legs. Can make all the throws, but has a bone-headed play or two every game. Has the body-type to take hits while standing in the pocket while making a big throw. Has shown he can play in the spotlight. Round 3 pick.

    5. Jimmy Garoppolo: A confident thrower who has the arm quickness to get the ball out quickly. His fundamentals get out of whack at times, especially when he's pressured. I think he'd do well in a system that spreads the field out and lets him use him quick decision making to pick apart defenses. Round 2 pick.
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Re: My top five QBs
Tue May 06, 2014 12:18 pm
  • Erebus wrote:If you see this much in Shaw to rank him higher than Bortles and Carr, what's holding him back? What do NFL teams see that will limit his opportunities?

    I'm not doubting you, just asking out of curiousity because I know nothing about him.


    Undersized, weak arm, relies on mobility. The Bruce Arians of the NFL would run screaming from him.

    But he's a really damn good QB. Just like Russ was.

    HuskerHawk wrote:What's your feel on Carr? By far the best arm in the draft, mature, mobile, and has the production. Also played in a pro style offense as a sophomore. I personally really like him the more I see of him, however the USC game left a bad taste in my mouth.


    I haven't watched him a lot, but he just gives me that generic 2nd round QB vibe, similar to guys like Chad Henne and Brock Osweiler. That's not to say he isn't talented, but is he driven, or is he a guy that's a little too content holding a clipboard? I get the sense he's the latter.

    Recon_Hawk wrote:Great list, Kip. What's your thoughts on Bortles.


    He has an accuracy problem after about 15 yards or so, especially when trying to hit targets that are moving laterally. It's a very persistent problem, and I think a few years from now he will be drawing comparisons to Jake Locker. He's a very similar runner to Locker too and doesn't slide enough.

    He can play the game fast, and his escapabililty in the pocket is very good for a big looking guy. He's similar to Luck in those respects, plus both guys have big arms and can run through walls.

    If he didn't have the accuracy issue I'd compare him to Big Ben, but because of it he's going to be erratic and have a career more like Locker, great one week, a dog the next.
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Re: My top five QBs
Tue May 06, 2014 1:24 pm
  • Boyd is the one who impresses me most in interviews. I think he has the right character.
    Bortles is my 2014 Gabbert. Prototype that I think will stink.
    Manziel is the guy I least want on the Rams. For all that there is to say about any one of these QBs, that to me is how I determine just how good a QB is. Please keep him out of my division.

    Shaw is my BJ Daniels for this year.
    Bridgewater is the least inspiring.
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Re: My top five QBs
Tue May 06, 2014 3:19 pm
  • My Top 5 would be..

    1. Manziel - Just think the guy has too much talent not to succeed and I think he's one of the few players in this game today that would actually thrive under the spotlight. His off the field stuff doesn't bother me too, too much if he were surrounded by vets/good coaching to keep him in check.

    2. Bridgewater - I really don't know why this guy has been overlooked all offseason. I know pro days are supposed to be automatic, but I would prefer to look at his tape and see how he performed in actual game situations... and I think he shined many of the times. Bridgewater to me could be one of those really good QB's that is never really considered a star, but isn't considered a bum either.. kind of like Matt Hasselbeck during his prime years.

    3. Garoppalo - I think if this kid played QB in the Big Ten instead of Eastern Illinois, that he'd be talked about as a potential Top 10 pick. I agree with Kip here.. he has Rodgers-esque accuracy. Very impressive prospect.

    4. Murray - He could be a David Greene type QB, but I love the guy. The body of work is there, he had a ton of success at Georgia in the best football conference for four seasons.. very well could have beat Alabama as a Junior to get them into the NC game against an overrated Notre Dame team and so forth. I like Murray a lot as a possible mid round steal.

    5. Carr - I think Carr probably has the highest boom or bust potential, but I've always enjoyed watching him play. Todd McShay basically ripped him to shreds when he faced pressure, which in an odd way kind of made me feel more confident Derek will have a better career as a starter than his brother did.

    Guys I'm very wary about:
    Bortles - To me he looks like Jake Locker 2.0

    Savage - How the hell is this kid getting 2nd round hype?!

    A.J. McCarron - Seems like a very average pro QB in the making. Possible he can become a steady backup somewhere but starter... I dont see it.

    Logan Thomas - Would be very interested in him as a tight end, think hes absolutely awful as a QB.

    Mettenberger - Wasn't a big fan of his even before the injury and now the failed drug test. Just have never been 'wowed' by his play.. and I watched many LSU games over the last couple of years.

    Forgotten Sleepers
    Boyd - Even though he makes Kip's list.. he's largely not talked about right now in the grand scheme of things. This was a guy getting some 1st round hype last Summer..

    Fales - Outstanding accuracy, but suspect arm strength will drop him. Still could be a decent player.. I see a lot of pre-concussion Marc Bulger in him
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Re: My top five QBs
Tue May 06, 2014 3:55 pm
  • The only one that I really disagree with is Garoppalo. I'm not expert but I think he doesn't use his eyes particularly well and compensates with pump fakes (in fairness, they are damn good pump fakes). This makes me worry about his abilities to go through progressions at the next level. The other thing that concerns me is how he operates in the pocket and under pressure. I think this is a major flaw in his game and worries me.

    I think Garoppalo is one of those sexy prospects that I could very easily be right/wrong about and I think it's funny you make the Aaron Rodgers comparison because I think sitting a few years would help Garoppalo quite a bit. But I have concerns with how he handles pressure and the way he seems stuck on one read.

    In fact the reason I like Bridgewater more is because I think Bridgewater uses his eyes very well and works well in the pocket in spite of pressure in his face. My one gripe with Bridgewater is the way his passes sometimes sail on him. The game that sticks with me is his game against Cincinnati where his accuracy seemed to drop off for no reason after the first drive and he didn't really find it again till the end of the game. But most of it was overthrows which I've seen Russell struggle with at times as well. So I think it's fixable.
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Re: My top five QBs
Wed May 07, 2014 9:48 am
  • I have to say this about Manziel: I don't like him as a top-10 selection. I love watching him play and I love his spectacular plays that gets his team in a position to win regularly. I hate that he takes so long to throw the ball...that's the benefit of playing behind an offensive line with 3 top-5 draft picks over the past two years. He's not going to have 5-10 seconds to throw the ball in the NFL like he had in college. That question mark alone is why I'd be wary of banking my franchise on him.

    I'll beat the drum for Bridgewater and Boyd, who both have had stellar careers. Having seen both of them play live, I think they can be almost as spectacular as Manziel when the game is on the line. They are playmakers and the projections placing them in the second-tier of QBs are out of line IMO. After the combine and workouts, I can see why they are not automatic first round picks, but their play in college should have them going in the late first, early second, in front of Bortles and Garappolo, and Carr. Just one man's opinion.
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Re: My top five QBs
Wed May 07, 2014 10:01 am
  • Totally agree with Garappolo. I don't like Bridgewater and wouldn't take him until the 4th. I would go:

    1. Manziel for the Russell Factor.

    2. Jimmy Garrapolo. For some reason I think of Tony Romo when I see him.

    3. Blake Bortles. Roethlisberger comps aren't too far off.

    4. Derek Carr. He would be great in a west coast system. Makes me think of Matt Schaub

    5. Zach Mettenberger. Big strong QB. I believe he had something to do with with Beckham's success. Jarvis Landry on the other hand was his go to guy when things got tough. (When the going gets tough, the tough (Jarvis) get going!) :D
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Re: My top five QBs
Wed May 07, 2014 10:39 am
  • kearly wrote:3. Teddy Bridgewater.

    Really smart QB who almost has it all, though it would be nice if he wasn't built like a twig. Usually QBs as skinny as Bridgewater tend to fear pressure a little more, so he might need a team with good protection. He's a very natural QB so he could be good even as a rookie with a dialed back playbook.


    So was Joe Montana (built like a twig).
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Re: My top five QBs
Wed May 07, 2014 2:50 pm
  • Lords of Scythia wrote:
    kearly wrote:3. Teddy Bridgewater.

    Really smart QB who almost has it all, though it would be nice if he wasn't built like a twig. Usually QBs as skinny as Bridgewater tend to fear pressure a little more, so he might need a team with good protection. He's a very natural QB so he could be good even as a rookie with a dialed back playbook.


    So was Joe Montana (built like a twig).


    And quite famously, Tom Brady.

    Those guys got top level protection. And the rest is history.
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Re: My top five QBs
Wed May 07, 2014 4:19 pm
  • I think Aaron Murray is the Russell Wilson of this draft. Great talent, both as a QB as well as in the mental game. Doesn't have the prototypical body but gets the job done just like RW.
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