Image Source: Saturday Down South
In this article, I’ll list my new order on what I consider to be the top prospects. This will be my final ranking of the quarterbacks. I have exhausted this avenue and I hope that you have learned a lot. At the least, I’m hoping to have provided a slightly different perspective on the quarterbacks of the 2011 NFL Draft. So, take a peek and leave a comment. When I do the player comparisons, this does by no means guarantee that they will be that player or that they won’t be. They just have some traits of the player mentioned in order to help you imagine how they are. It’s exaggerated. They’ll be their own player.
1. Ryan Mallet, Arkansas (top-5 pick)
Player Comparison: Terry Bradshaw with no scramble ability, Steelers of Old
Mallet has it all.
A rocket arm
Disciplined footwork (not quick but disciplined)
A mind for the game
The background (coach’s son)
Experience in pro-style offense
Reads the D well
The ability to better those around him
Team captain before ever playing (voted by players)
Now, as far as the character issues are concerned. Absolutely nothing that has been “reported” has been proven. Until Mallett fails a drug test, misses meetings or misses curfew, he is not a problem. There are no reports of this, only “rumors”. Some of these rumors are reported by supposed trusted individuals. The latest involves Mallett supposedly being hungover meeting the Panthers and not being able to continue meetings while on a visit. Mallet tried to go. He even met in the morning to go over the offense but was sick with “nausea”. At this point, you could argue he was hungover, but the Panthers even issued a statement saying how sick he was and that they let him rest and then drove him to the airport. They defended him without prompt. That says it all, even during “smokescreen season” as teams want to send fals info to other teams.
2. Andy Dalton (top-10 pick for a team that plays to his strengths, otherwise a 2nd rounder)
Player Comparison: a better Kevin Kolb, Eagles
Dalton can be great
Amazing win record
He has the mentality of a winner. He expects it.
Makes WR’s better. They are by no means All-World.
He can do timing routes extremely well
Notices coverages well.
His only flaw is lacking the arm strength to deliver into tight windows, whether that be short or long. Dalton does have to throw extra hard to make a tight throw. This also leaves the ball floating on a deep ball. Dalton will be fine in the NFL but he will not be able to throw a “9” route (deep ball on a straight run) the way Jay Cutler or Brett Favre can. He can still throw it, just has to throw early to lead the receiver and the coverage needs to be beat.
Very intellectuall regarding the X’s and O’s
3. Ricky Stanzi, Iowa (top-15 caliber player for a team that can sit him a year)
Player Comparison: Matt Schaub, Texans
This is perhaps the biggest shocker on the list if you’ve been watching ESPN and NFLN.
Above-avg arm (think slightly less than Chad Henne)
Great footwork at this stage
Leader (team captain)
Stanzi has everything that you want, he just needs a little refinement of these skills. Ideally Stanzi would go to a team like the Jaguars where he can sit for one season and then come out and play comfortable in the system and with the personnell
4. Jake Locker, Washington (early 2nd round)
Player Comparison: Steve Young, 49ers
Locker bothers me and excites me at the same time. He throws a great ball, runs well, and knows the offense well. Locker was not on a talented team and had the opportunity to go to USC but decided to help revive the local team. This speaks to both his talent and his character when only in high school. When watching Locker you will notice things that remind you of any classic passer that puts all they have into the throw (think Brett Favre or Steve McNair).
Can be an All-Pro
Will be injury-prone if he stays with the habit of lowering his shoulder against NFL defenses
excellent at throwing on the run. In this regard he reminds me of Jake Plummer