If you're not familiar with my articles, it wouldn't be a surprise, because I don't post much. A few years ago though, I wrote an article after watching a young QB for Nevada tear up a decent CAL team. His name was Colin Kaepernick, and at the time I thought he was the ideal QB for what Buddy and Chan were looking for in their future signal caller.
(Link to the article)
Colin ended up going 2nd round, something I was a tad shocked with since I thought he would most likely go 3rd, and hopefully to the BILLS. Looking back now though, can you blame the Niners for "reaching" for him in the 2nd? It seems to be working out pretty well for them, as he's added a dimension to that offense that Alex Smith could never provide.
Fast forward to this past draft, and anyone who knows me knows I was clamoring for the BILLS to take Russell Wilson. My personal rankings had Luck one, Wilson two, and RG3 coming in as the third best QB. I was on record saying I didnt care if we took Wilson in the first round, because ultimately he's a franchise QB, and taking a franchise QB in the 1st is clearly what you do regardless if the talking head idiots like Kiper or McShay say you "reached way too early" for them. When the BILLS had Russell visit them in Buffalo this past April, I was convinced One Bills Drive saw exactly what I was seeing in this kid. He had a great arm, was short, but was playing behind essentially an NFL sized O-line and flourishing. He had played in the west coast offense at NCST, and a pro style I-formation at Wisconsin. Most of all though he was a natural born leader.
On April 3rd on twitter (follow me @ViciousV__) I tweeted to Matt Rich Warren:
When the 2nd round came up, I was ready for us to take him, but we took Cordy Glenn, which was an excellent pick looking back. 3rd round came, and at this point I knew it was now or never because there was no way he'd be there when we came up again in the 4th. We took TJ Graham, and the rest is history. I was out to dinner with friends but was live streaming the draft through my ESPN radio app, and when the Seahawks took Wilson I angrily slammed my fist down on the table, garnering a few "whats wrong with that guy" stares at the bar.
On Facebook, I immediately wrote:
We're gonna rue the day we passed on Russell Wilson. TJ Graham better be the next James Jett
Looking back on the two QB's I wanted the BILLS to take, it stings watching them thrive in other cities, while we still have no answer at the single most important position on the field. I don't even dislike Fitzpatrick, but he's clearly not ever going to bring this city a title, and ultimately that is the goal. Looking at this years crop of QB's, I think they're mediocre at best. People say Geno Smith and Matt Barkley should be the first two guys off the board, and to that I say good, because I like neither of them. Barkley looks like Mark Sanchez 2.0 and Geno Smith, although athletic, just is not a winner and struggles to read complex defenses IMO. Being a 'Cuse and BIG EAST fan, I've seen plenty of him to know he doesn't have what it takes to excel at the next level. There is honestly only 1 QB in this entire draft that I can see developing into a solid starter in the NFL, and that guy is Tajh Boyd. If you look at Tajh's stats, he's right there at the top, and has improved his numbers from last year till now.
In a way, he reminds me a little of Russell Wilson. He's won a ton of games in the past 2 years, has a great arm, NFL sized body to withstand the rigors and punishment of a 16 game season, and possesses the legs to keep plays alive and move the sticks on the ground when necessary. I'd give him a 3rd round grade, so if the BILLS want to guarantee getting him, I think they need to select him in the 2nd. He's actually taller then Russell, so that's clearly a plus, and at Clemson he runs the pistol attack the majority of the time, so he would seamlessly fit right in with Chan's offense (assuming he comes back for the 2013 campaign).
Wrapping this up, I hope the BILLS will ultimately decide to cut Fitz this off season, and look to bring in Vick or Rivers if either is made available. If we brought in one of those, then drafted Tajh 2nd or 3rd round, I think the future of the position on this team would be pretty solid for years to come. Let Tajh sit one or maybe even two years behind either of those guys and I think by the time he takes over he'd have a pretty firm grasp on the job. Now that's not to say I don't think Tajh could come in next year and immediately compete for the job, in fact if I had to bet Id say Fitz is probably not going anywhere, but I pray they wake up and finally decide to bring in and develop a guy that can play here for the next 8-10 years. Tajh could very well be it, and with that, I'll leave you with a highlight of him vs NCST this year when he threw for 426 yards, 5 TD's, and rushed for 3 more scores while chewing up 103 yards on the ground. And I implore everyone to watch the Clemson vs LSU bowl game in a few weeks, as it will be important for him to show scouts that he can light up elite college defenses like the Tigers have.