With camps over for now and fresh news at a crawl, I think I can get away with asking this: Is this finally the year we draft a quarterback? It's been years since a meaningful (higher than 4th round) pick was spent on one, and it's been apparent by looking at the production we've seen from that position. If there prove to be few holes that can't be filled through FA/ late round picks next year (as we all hope to be playoff bound at this point), I see this as the year we pull the trigger on a franchise QB.
After the jump are a few candidates that should be available in the first round of next year's draft that I think are worth a long look at (or that I wouldn't be adverse to trading up to get), along with a synopsis from both my own observations as well as last years NCAA scouting reports. And let me know what you all think!
Matt Barkley (USC): Considering he'll likely be taken in the Top 5 even if he struggles this year, it's not likely that he'll be available for our choosing. Also, given the performance historically of USC QB's, I'm not sure I'd want to give up that much to get him (considering we'll hopefully be picking somewhere around 23rd lol)
Tyler Bray (Tennessee): An intriguing prospect given his size (6-6, 213lbs) and powerful arm. He's had injuries, and could stand to gain some weight in order to hold up at the NFL level (prev. suffered a broken thumb). Good pocket awareness, although will at times attempt to force throws he should toss away, due to his powerful arm and aggressive nature. Needs to stay healthy in 2012, and tweak his decision making skills just a bit to continue improving statistically. Will likely be available in the Top 5-10 of next years draft.
Tyler Wilson (Arkansas): He's got prototypical size for an NFL QB (6-3, 220lbs) and can make all of the NFL throws. He is statistically proficient, but was also the product of Bobby Petrino's QB-friendly offense and a solid group of recievers. His mechanics leave something to be desired, causing his accuracy to suffer somewhat, but he has proven himself to be capable of managing in spite of them. Will occasionally try to force throws that his arm strength can't make up for. Needs to prove he can play outside of his former system and find better foot work and mechanics in 2012. Likely to be available in the top 10-20 of next years draft.
Landry Jones (Oklahoma): One of the biggest wildcards at this position. He could end up being as good as a middle of the 1st round pick to falling out of the 1st completely, based on his performance in 2012. Adequate size and average arm strength, and he's managed to put up some monster games, statistically speaking. Puts a good amount of touch on the ball. Has lead some memorable comebacks with his own play. However his problems seem to be mental in nature. Isn't as aggressive with the ball as you would expect from someone with his size, which causes him to check down alot. Has played poorly in some big games recently, raising concerns about his ability to win consistantly at the next level.