NFL Draft 2011: Andrew Luck or Jake Locker—Who Would You Draft?
The Pac-10 boasts two of the most prominent talents in the nation with Andrew Luck of Stanford, and Jake Locker of Washington. Both are fleet-footed, intelligent in scanning receivers and dynamic in crucial conversions.
Throw out the fact that Andrew Luck just laid down the law on Washington earlier this evening. In a comparison between quarterbacks, it's unfair to judge who played better simply because of how much more dominant Stanford's defense has been in relation to Washington.
Jake Locker has engineered two perfect come back drives, and not against weak opponents. He drove the field in Los Angeles, and set up a game winning field goal over USC. He also gave the home crowd a taste of his clutch play when he toppled the Oregon State Beavers in overtime, notching 5 TD passes.
Who would I draft?
Like most, I was sold on Locker at the start of the season because of his speed, and knack for getting out of precarious situations. Andrew Luck has turned out to be more impressive on the ground, and I like how he handled the Oregon game, even during one of his worst career efforts.
That's not to say Jake Locker won't turn out better five years down the NFL road. For me, it's Luck's presumed ability to step in and be a leader for a program, similar to what Sam Bradford has done for the Rams.
The negative side of stepping in immediately is what I'd like to call the Matt Leinart/ David Carr syndrome: The player becomes accustomed to always being given the starting spot rather then earning it. That's where Jake Locker's scrappy play could factor in.
Either way, both quarterbacks will be great additions to any NFL team. However, Andrew Luck has the potential to become an instant star.
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