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Merrill Hoge Advice to Colts Proves No One Should Ever Take Analyst Seriously

NEW YORK - APRIL 21:  ESPN's Merril Hoge attends ESPN the Magazine's 7th Annual Pre-Draft Party at Espace on April 21, 2010 in New York City.  (Photo by Mark Von Holden/Getty Images for ESPN)
Mark Von Holden/Getty Images
Ryan PhillipsContributor IIIMarch 21, 2012

ESPN analyst Merrill Hoge has always been a bit out with his projections and he seems to revel in being a contrarian, but this time, he's gone too far.

On Wednesday morning's SportsCenter, Hoge claimed that the Indianapolis Colts should draft Baylor's Robert Griffin III over Stanford's Andrew Luck with the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NFL draft. He went on to claim that based on the game tape, Griffin was a better prospect in terms of accuracy, arm strength and touch. He conceded that Luck was a better decision-maker. 

Hoge then said that he would take Griffin over Luck in "half a heart beat" if it was up to him.

Clearly, the former fullback is still a little hazy from the concussions he suffered while playing in the league. 

Don't get me wrong, I really like Griffin, but Hoge is crazy if he thinks the Baylor product is far and away a better prospect that Luck. They may be close, but the Stanford signal-caller has the edge.

I have watched hours of tape on both guys, and while Griffin does jump off the screen, so does Luck. In fact, I'd argue that Luck's accuracy, timing, arm strength and poise set him far above RG3. 

There is a reason virtually every expert has had Luck listed as the No. 1 pick in this year's draft for over a year now. The kid is an unbelievable talent, an incredibly smart football player and poised enough to become the face of a franchise. Griffin has all of those qualities as well, but not to the level that Luck does.

Luck is the best quarterback prospect I've ever scouted, and while Griffin is a phenomenal talent, he isn't the sure thing that Luck is. Both guys should be successful, but Hoge's analysis is just off here. If the Indianapolis Colts pass on Luck to take Griffin, they will regret it. 

And anyone who pays attention to Hoge's analysis from now on will regret it as well.

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