Previous Pick: Quanterus Smith, DE/OLB, Western Kentucky
At No. 7 overall, this pick would have been a disaster. Other areas needed more attention, and clearly, the Cooper pick made a bunch more sense.
But way down in the fourth round, this pick is perfect. The Cardinals still have another fourth-rounder upcoming, thanks to San Diego moving up to take Manti Te’o, so this pick is kind of a freebie.
Matt Barkley started four years at Southern California. He tossed 116 touchdowns and 48 interceptions in that time while completing 64.1 percent of his passes for 12,327 yards. He is no lightweight in terms of college football quarterbacks.
He is the big-time quarterback prospect who went to the big-time college football program and put up big-time numbers while starting 47 games in four years.
But all those stats and all those games lead some to the conclusion—after watching his 1,562 pass attempts—that he doesn’t have what it takes to be a franchise quarterback. I covered that topic in January, looking at some non-traditional quarterback stats in an attempt to determine if this quarterback class has a hidden gem within it.
In the right system with the right coaching, Barkley can be a solid NFL starter. Maybe he's not the elite “franchise guy” everyone covets, but if he can get the team to the next guy while winning some games, why not give him a shot in the fourth round?