NFL Draft 2011: Jake Locker, Ryan Mallett Sure to Go in Round 1?
Both quarterbacks Jake Locker and Ryan Mallett have been rumored to go in round one.
I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing really.
Any other year, I could really see these guys going in round three or four.
Although this year, when so many teams need quarterbacks, I can really see someone take a chance on at least one of these guys.
Here's a few reasons for and against them going in round one...
No for Locker: Stats
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Quite frankly, they're terrible.
And we're not just talking about his pathetic showing in the Holliday bowl against Nebraska either (5-16, 56 yards).
I mean it's nice and all that he's athletic and can run the ball.
JaMarcus Russell could throw like 60 yards from his knees or whatever.
Here's Locker's season stats: 184/332 (just over 50% for those of you math majors), 2,265 yards, with 17 TDs, and 9 INTs, and a 124 rating.
Now those may look fairly good to you.
But he was playing in the pass happy (mostly) Pac-10, where defense was optional a good bit of the time.
Okay forget the two games against Nebraska that brought down his numbers. Fine.
What about...maybe, say, Stanford?
7-14, 64 yards, 2 INTs.
Sure, he didn't have any real help at receiver.
Andrew Luck doesn't have a ton of help either.
Have I made my point?
No for Mallett: His Attitude
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Now, this isn't official mind you.
And Arkansas fans may deny this.
But I've heard rumors, rumors mind you, that Mallett yells at his offensive line...a lot.
Doesn't mean he's not a solid QB.
But if I'm on the offensive line, working my butt off, I don't want a young rookie coming in yelling at me.
Not to mention the fact that, while he's no Cam Newton for ego, he does have an ego. No one can deny that.
And some teams may get scared off by that.
I'll give him this though...he doesn't seem to come off as bad as, oh...Jimmy Clausen.
Yes for Locker: Athleticism
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The boy is a prototypical NFL quarterback...as far as his size and height go.
You couldn't ask for much better: 6'3". Somewhere around 220-225 lbs.
So he has the tools, we know that.
Now if he can hit a receiver...bingo.
Yes for Mallett: Rocket Arm
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Kind of the same thing as Locker, only it's not his physique that intrigues teams.
It's his arm.
And yes, he did have at least a couple of solid receivers at Arkansas.
But he used them well.
And he throws a beautiful deep ball.
You can't coach that.
So some teams have to be drooling if they can get him in round 2 or 3.
Yes for Locker: Attitude
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While Mallett seems to be a bit arrogant, Locker seems to come off the opposite: as a shy, humble kid.
That may serve him well in the NFL.
Don't get me wrong...QBs have to be confident.
But Locker seems to have a quiet confidence.
I mean, there have been cocky QBs. Brett Favre was pretty cocky at times.
But coaches these days like guys who come in willing to learn.
That seems to be what Locker is.
Yes for Mallett: Stats
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And while Locker doesn't have the stats, Mallett does.
Over 3,000 yards.
32 TDs with just 12 INTs.
And maybe the most impressive?
He played in the SEC, arguably the best defensive conference in the country.
Yes for Both: Lack of NFL Quarterbacks
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This year, it seems like all the QBs are moving up the board.
Well, a lot of teams need QBs.
A short list of teams includes Arizona, San Francisco, Seattle, Minnesota, Washington, Oakland, and Carolina.
Not to mention maybe teams like Cincinatti and Miami.
And several teams could be interested in grooming a future starter, like Indianapolis or New England.
So, with quarterbacks moving up the board, one of these guys has a good chance slipping in end of round one to a New England or Seattle.
No for Both: Call It a Gut Feeling
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Look, let me be frank here, and this is pure opinion: the class of quarterbacks is weak this year in my opinion.
If Andrew Luck comes out, these guys aren't going in round one. Even with Luck, the class feels a bit weak to me.
I mean, who had Blaine Gabbert as a top-five pick a year ago?
Anyone? Sorry, it just seems like these guys are only benefitting from lack of good quarterbacks in the league.
I could be completely wrong about these two, and I hope they do well. I just don't think they belong in the first round.
We shall see if they go that early, however.
Enjoy the draft everyone!