The NFL's Oncoming Quarterback Crisis And Its Implications For The Draft
Sports

The NFL's Oncoming Quarterback Crisis And Its Implications For The Draft

Why the Cowboys have to select a Quarterback with the fourth overall pick.

26
Denver Post

This April, the Dallas Cowboys sit in a curious position. It's a curious position that will not only set the course for the franchise going forward, but that could also have broad implications on the direction of the league going forward.

A year ago at this time, the team was on top of the world. The team had ridden Tony Romo, DeMarco Murray, and Dez Bryant, along with the league's best offensive line, to a deep January run. Despite losing Murray in free agency, the team was one of the consensus favorites in the NFC the next season. Of course, things didn’t turn out that way. Romo and Bryant spent the season injured and the team floundered to a 4-12 season, finishing last in the lowly NFC East.

With the fourth overall pick in this years draft, the Cowboys have two options. They could add an impact player like Joey Bosa, Miles Jack, or Jalen Ramsey who could potentially spark a Super Bowl type of season. After all, the core of the roster from a year ago still remains. However, many are calling for an alternative option. Romo is already 35 and has only finished one of the past three seasons. Dallas likely won’t be picking this high in the draft for a long while, leading many to believe that they could use that pick to draft Romo’s eventual successor as Quarterback.

Owner Jerry Jones has initially scoffed at such theories. “Jerry told me recently that he will unequivocally not take a quarterback at No. 4, where the Cowboys draft this year,” wrote NFL Media’s Gill Brandt. “I believe him. It makes sense if you think Romo will make a full recovery from off-season surgery, will be your starter for at least three more years, and your team has a window of opportunity that will remain open by filling more glaring needs with the top pick in the draft.”

If Jones is indeed telling the truth, this is a worrying statement for Cowboys fans. There aren’t enough quarterbacks in the league to go around as is and the Cowboys know the struggle of sifting through years of quarterback purgatory first hand. Teams like the Texans and Rams have let strong rosters go to waste for years while waiting for the next franchise quarterback.

“We still can’t find ourselves more than 16 to 20 guys at one given time to control and operate an NFL franchise at the quarterback position successfully,” said Rich Eisen on a broadcast of the NFL Combine. “It really is incredible how difficult this position is or to find somebody.”

This problem has always plagued NFL teams. There aren’t enough quarterbacks to go around. The teams with a true franchise quarterback are in a great position to contend for titles while the rest are left as afterthoughts, no matter how strong their roster is.

Except, nowadays, the problem has been more or less been solved for the bulk of the teams in the league. Almost every team in the league has an established starting quarterback on their roster. Due to the strength of recent drafts for the position, the problem doesn’t seem nearly as bad. Successful picks like Jameis Winston, Derick Carr, and Blake Bortles in recent drafts have given hope to once lost teams. At the moment, only the Browns, 49ers, Rams, Jets, and Broncos lack an established starter at the position. By the account of most draft experts, two of these teams will find a solution in the draft through either Jared Goff or Carson Wentz. When compared to even five years ago, when quarterbacks to the likes of Kyle Orton, Jason Campbell, Kevin Kolb, and Bruce Gradkowski, among others, entered the year as starters, the state of quarterbacks right now doesn't seem nearly as bad.

This won’t last long, however. A large number of the currently established starters are quarterbacks who will most likely be set to retire within the next five years, leaving massive holes in the position for a disturbingly large number of teams. Currently, there are seven established starting quarterbacks in the league who are at least 34 years of age, among them are Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Carson Palmer, Tony Romo, Eli Manning, Philip Rivers, and Ben Roethlisberger.

Don’t let the longevity of Brady and Manning change expectations for how long quarterbacks last in the league. Those are generational talents that have been able to make up for their diminishing physical skill set with an exceptional mastery of the mental side of the game. Brees falls into this category as well. While players like Romo and Rivers have been fine players in the position for many years, they shouldn’t be considered in the same vein as those Hall of Fame talents.

All of these players would project to retire two to four years from now. That list doesn’t include guys like Jay Cutler and Alex Smith, who have been middling talents and may not last much longer than that in starting roles. Of course, Aaron Rodgers turned 32 this year and has had his own problems with injuries in recent years. His physical playing style may not lend to a long career like Brady. Throw in a few teams abandoning questionable type of players like Ryan Tannehill and Tyrod Taylor and there could easily be ten or more teams searching for a quarterback within a two or three year span.

Some teams have done their best to combat this issue by drafting mid-round quarterbacks as “heir apparents” to take over when their aging starter retires. Teams look at the story of Aaron Rodgers sitting behind Brett Farve for years and try to replicate those results on their own teams. The Saints just drafted Garrett Grayson in the third round. A year earlier, the Patriots took Jimmy Garoppolo in the second. The best example of this is the Broncos drafting Brock Osweiler, who went on to have success as their starter this past year before defecting to the Texans. However, such mid-round talents rarely pan out as starting options. For every Kirk Cousins, there’s a Ryan Mallett. 23 of the current starting quarterbacks in the league were drafted in the top 40 selections in the draft. Guys like Tom Brady, drafted outside of the top round of the draft to sit, are the exception and not the rule.

Of course, this all goes without mentioning the matter of college football as well. The days of ready-made, Andrew Luck type prospects coming out of college are ending quickly. More and more colleges are switching to spread style offenses, leaving less pro-ready prospects coming into the league with each passing year. The athletes in the draft are woefully unprepared to take on NFL level play books, drop back seven steps and read the field, line up under center, or even take command of a huddle.

So, if the Cowboys do stick to the words of Jones and draft a position outside of quarterback with the fourth pick, they will be cursing themselves to the mad scramble for quarterbacks in the league-wide quarterback draught that is sure to come in the next few years. They won’t be picking this high in the draft again until it’s already too late.
Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Lifestyle

13 Father's Day Shirts Under $30 To Gift The Dad Wearing The Same Two Every Day In Quarantine

You've been begging him to change it up, and now he won't have a choice.

Let's be honest: most of our dads are wearing the same shirts today that they probably wore while changing our diapers and holding our hands as we learned to walk. Sure, we love them for it. But whether you're quarantined with him wearing the same two shirts on rotation every week, or every time you FaceTime him, you know what he'll be wearing before he answers the phone, he needs to add some new items to his wardrobe rotation.

And you know dads — they'll feel guilted into using practically anything you were to give them. But these shirts are sure-fire ways to get him to switch up his wardrobe, and he'll be more than excited to wear each and every one of them. Plus, most of them are under twenty dollars, so no harm in dropping more than a couple in to your cart and letting Dad have his pick of his favorites.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Sat Down (Virtually) With Hollis Tuttle To Talk About Coronavirus's Impact On The Wellness Industry

Just because coronavirus has greatly impacted the wellness industry doesn't mean wellness stops.

If you're anything like me, your weekly fitness classes are a huge part of your routine. They keep me fit, healthy, and sane. Honestly, these classes help my mental health stay in tip-top shape just as much as they help my physical health.

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, gyms and fitness studios are facing temporary closure. Yes, this means my personal routine is thrown a curveball, but this also means the wellness industry is one of many that is looking at unemployment and hardship. Do I miss my Monday spin class? Of course. But do the wellness professionals whose worlds were flipped upside down have a lot more to overcome than a slight change of routine? Absolutely. Thankfully, if anyone can prove the ultimate flexibility, it's the wellness industry.

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

My Boyfriend Has Changed Since Quarantine Began, And I Don't Know What To Do

"All he says is 'I love you,' which is great and all but OMG I can't get anything else out of him."

Each week Swoonie B will give her advice on anonymous topics submitted by readers. Want to Ask Swoonie B something related to dating and relationships? Fill out this form here — it's anonymous.

Dear Swoonie B,

My boyfriend and I have been dating for almost a year, which has been the best year of my life (as far as i know). Well we go to different schools and are both very involved in sports and school activities which makes it hard to see each other. During this quarantine it is especially hard. Since we haven't seen each other in over a week things are kind of tense. He won't really talk to me much and I always check in on him to make sure he is doing well and to just see how he is, ya know being a girlfriend. Well apparently that is driving him crazy and I don't understand how. I'm not being controling or clingy, i'm just checking in on him. While this is happening, I also have noticed how he just doesn't really care anymore. I'll leave him paragraphs of sweet love letters to wake up to and I encourage him throughout his day but I just don't get it in return. I love him with all of me and I obviously care about him a lot. Also, I've compared how he talked to me before all of this has happened. He was so sweet and caring, texting me a lot and telling me he loves me and just making sure everything is OK but he doesn't do that anymore. All he says is "I love you," which is great and all but OMG I can't get anything else out of him. He is a little stressed at home with trying to find another job to pay for his car, constantly having to do things for his mom, being responsible for his siblings, and managing school. I know thats a lot but im doing a lot too right now and going through a lot of the same stuff he is but It seems to me he just does not care and i don't know what to do. Please help me or give me some advice on what to say, what not to say, what to do, what not to do. Anything at this point will help. Thank you!

If I had a dollar for every time I heard "these are unprecedented times," I'd be rich. But that's because it's true!

Keep Reading... Show less
Tower 28

On paper, Amy Liu appears to be one of the most intimidating women in the beauty business. Not only did she launch her beauty marketing career at legendary Smashbox Cosmetics, she went on to lead luxury, high-end brands like Kate Somerville and Josie Maran — just to name a few.

But sitting down to meet Liu for the first time in an underground New York bar over a year ago felt like meeting a friend I'd known since childhood. As she walked into the bar in a chic red dress, it was impossible not to feel her immediate warm presence. When she talks about her history as an entrepreneur (and truly, at heart, she always was one), you don't get the sense that she's selling you anything, though with her impeccable taste, I'd use anything that had her glowing review attached to it.

Keep Reading... Show less

Sixth grade was the year that you were allowed to participate in a school sport. This was what my friends and I had all been waiting for since we started middle school. I had already made the cheer team with my friends, but I had to wait to start that in the winter since we cheered for basketball. I really wanted to have some sort of activity in the fall, but I did not know what to do. Somehow, I decided to run cross country. Not really sure how I decided on a sport where it was quite literally just running. A few of my friends were doing it as well, so I knew it was going to be fun.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Working Out Every Day During Quarantine Helps Me Feel A Sense Of Control

Physical activity helps my mental health in a world that feels uncertain.

Before the pandemic, I exercised a handful of times a week at best. In quarantine, I've been exercising every single day. I don't want this article to be another spiel about how exercise "changed my life," and all the other cliches that health gurus use to convince others to work out more. Rather, I want to reveal that exercise is a tool that works for me because it boosts my mental health when I feel like the world is spiraling out of control.

Keep Reading... Show less

To say that 2020 has been a bit of a roller coaster is an extreme understatement. Who knew that this decade was going to start off like THIS!? Not me, not you, and not that sweet old lady who lives down the street. One thing is certain though — while the world may be a mess right now, you can still fuel your body with food that keeps you happy and healthy. Thankfully, as we are all spending more time inside, you can get healthy snacks delivered straight to your front door! Amazon has never been more convenient (and tasty).

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments