At some point, we knew the Arizona Cardinals would draft a developmental quarterback. Carson Palmer is on the verge of turning 35, Drew Stanton has always been a career backup and Ryan Lindley has shown limited upside over the course of his two-year career.
Yet, did anyone really think head coach Bruce Arians and general manager Steve Keim would sign off on drafting the biggest developmental quarterback in the draft?
I mean, seriously NFL Draft? Logan Thomas over Zach Mettenberger and Aaron Murray is just crazy talk.— Barrett Sallee (@BarrettSallee) May 10, 2014
Sure, selecting Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas would have made a ton of sense in Rounds 6 and 7, but to spend a fourth-round pick (No. 120 overall) on him is ludicrous.
Thomas may have all the physical tools in the book, but he has one glaring hole in his game that some NFL scouts say you can't fix: accuracy. Here's what Randy Chambers of Bleacher Report had to say about Thomas' accuracy issues:
Along with the interceptions, Thomas struggled mightily with accuracy issues. When you are a starting quarterback who is completing only 51.3 percent of your passes, there's a problem. This percentage must improve at least 10 percent for Thomas to be considered an elite quarterback, earn respect from NFL scouts and help the Hokies achieve team goals.
Dane Brugler of CBS Sports says the two biggest reasons behind Thomas' shoddy accuracy are inconsistent footwork and mechanics. By the sounds of it, Arians and the Cardinals' offensive coaching staff have a long road in front of them.
At the earliest, Thomas won't be ready to contribute as a full-time starter until 2016. And that's a best-case scenario. Why? Because Thomas told Andy Bitter of the Roanoke Times before the draft that he knows there will be a learning curve in front of him:
Obviously everybody wants to start, but I know what pretty much every other quarterback who comes into the league knows: there’s going to be that learning curve. And sometimes it takes a couple years. So I understand.
Even if Thomas sits for a couple of years, the bad news is he may end up being a waste of the Cardinals' time. I say this because he plateaued as a sophomore in college. After his second season at Virginia Tech, he never took his game to the next level.
Some of his slow development falls on the shoulders of Virginia Tech's coaching staff, yet the majority of it falls on him. When Thomas gets to Arizona, he needs to show the Cardinals that he is coachable and willing to break the old habits that previously held him back.
Bill Polian: There is nothing I saw on tape that led me to believe Logan Thomas (Arizona) has a chance to be a very good QB.— Joe Schad (@schadjoe) May 10, 2014
If Thomas can't show the Cardinals those two things, he will undoubtedly go down as one of the worst selections in the Arians-Keim era. Moreover, the Cardinals will then have to use another draft pick on the quarterback position down the road.
With such a deep draft in 2014, Arizona would have been better off using its fourth-round pick elsewhere. The Cardinals still need offensive line and cornerback help. Pierre Desir of Lindenwood and Dakota Dozier of Furman would have both been better selections with the 120th pick.