Rookie quarterback Justin Fields will throw at Ohio State’s second Pro Day, and San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan is predicted to attend. Free Agent Richard Sherman praises Fields, and believes the Niners ought to draft him at No. 3. Eric Mangini joins First Things First to resolve whether or not he agrees with Sherman, and Fields might discover himself in San Francisco.
By Martin Rogers
FOX Sports Columnist
A probably outstanding NFL Draft is almost upon us, developing swiftly on the again finish of this month, with a sequence of situational peculiarities and up to date developments shaping it as much as be one thing that’s unmissable within the current and influentially seismic – a technique or one other – sooner or later.
It all facilities round a gifted group of quarterbacks producing probably the most consideration amongst NFL groups and it’s already being described any variety of methods. A QB frenzy, a QB bonanza, an arms race, the Super Signal-caller Sweepstakes (fantastic, I made the final one up … however I sort of prefer it).
“There are,” mentioned Chicago Bears head coach Matt Nagy (apparently with out a hint of irony), “a lot of good quarterbacks in this draft class.”
Let’s hope he’s proper. It’s going to be a large outdated mess in any other case.
A mix of timing and the ever-present actuality that there merely aren’t as many high quality NFL QBs as there are groups that want them, means this draft might look a complete lot totally different to what you’re used to.
Quarterbacks are at all times highly-prized, however maybe by no means greater than now. Several mock drafts have QBs being taken with each one of many first 4 slots on the board. That’s proper … 1-2-3-4.
Consensus is that Trevor Lawrence would be the No. 1 decide, though we will by no means make sure of these items till they really … okay, neglect that. Lawrence is No. 1 and is headed to the Jacksonville Jaguars, one thing the Jags aren’t allowed to actively say however are making no try to cover.
In reality, the primary three appear sure to be quarterbacks once you take even probably the most cursory look on the tea leaves. The New York Jets didn’t commerce away Sam Darnold to the Carolina Panthers simply to be left hanging at an important place and are broadly tipped to safe BYU’s Zach Wilson at No. 2.
Likewise, the San Francisco 49ers didn’t engineer a blockbuster commerce involving seven picks and two different groups as a way to safe the No. 3 place, simply so they might seize a defensive lineman.
“We are excited to (get) a hell of a quarterback,” head coach Kyle Shanahan admitted final month, whereas successfully placing a time restrict on Jimmy Garoppolo’s Bay Area future.
After that, it will get much more fascinating, with the Atlanta Falcons proudly owning the fourth decide. Countless choices abound there, together with the Falcons choosing a quarterback to both change or study underneath Matt Ryan, or buying and selling away the choice, or utilizing it to spice up their roster at one other place.
“We know quarterbacks are going 1-2-3,” FS1’s Nick Wright said on “First Things First.” “You’ve got to ask yourself at some point, how many great QBs do we think are coming out of this draft? If you go quarterback at four, you are not getting the best value for that pick. Instead, you could get literally the best player at any other position.”
Yet it’s simple to see why groups can be tempted to maneuver up. In the NFL, for any staff that desires to be a contender, a quarterback that’s no less than serviceable is a naked minimal. A great one can get you to the promised land, or no less than supply some hope that such a factor is feasible. One that doesn’t work out could be a monetary drain that takes years to crawl out from underneath.
There are not any ensures.
“How often was the first quarterback off the board the one who went on to have the best career in a given draft?” asked Rodger Sherman of The Ringer. “Time and again, teams have proved more likely to pick the wrong quarterback than the right one.”
If a five-year stretch from 2013-2017, the primary quarterback picked in every draft was as follows: EJ Manuel, Blake Bortles, Jameis Winston, Jared Goff and Mitchell Trubisky. Sometimes none of these picked actually work out. Probably the perfect profession to come back from the 2013 class belongs to Geno Smith.
All this places extra deal with the small group past Lawrence and Wilson. Drafting a QB No. 1 who goes on to be actually good is superior. Finding the appropriate man with a decrease decide is infinitely sweeter.
Justin Fields, Mac Jones and Trey Lance spherical out the group of 5 predicted to generate probably the most curiosity. Fields will throw subsequent week at Ohio State’s second professional day, and the 49ers have confirmed they are going to be in attendance. If Fields, Jones or Lance start to drop, even groups not essentially available in the market for a QB could be tempted to strive get their man, for the medium time period.
FOX Sports Betting Analyst Jason McIntyre has 4 QBs being chosen within the top-eight picks in his latest NFL mock draft. Meanwhile, Colin Cowherd has quarterbacks being taken with the primary 4 picks in his newest mock draft.
After the information of the New York Jets buying and selling Sam Darnold to the Carolina Panthers, Colin Cowherd has revised his 2021 NFL Mock Draft. See the place he believes gamers will land after these new developments.
The final time there was a frenetic rush on QBs like we’ll in all probability see this yr was again in 1999. Tim Couch got here off the board first, Donovan McNabb adopted instantly and Akili Smith rounded out the highest three. Daunte Culpepper went at 11 and Cade McNown at 12. McNabb took the Eagles to a Super Bowl and Culpepper made three Pro Bowls, however you don’t want an NFL historian to let you know that there wasn’t a complete lot of ensuing magic to come back from the remainder of these picks.
And nonetheless…groups are going to maintain attempting.
It goes to be a wild draft and there are a lot of unknowns. Limited info is accessible, similar to final yr. Teams should take extra of a likelihood. The manner it’s wanting, there’s no scarcity of organizations that may attempt to swing large.
It is thrilling and anticipatory, simply due to the inherent hazard concerned. Your decide might flip into Aaron Rodgers or … yeah, precisely, that man who as soon as thrilled your GM and whose title you may’t now bear in mind.
If all of them hit, it is going to go down as one of many biggest QB courses of all time, possibly even one thing to carry a candle to the 1983 corps that featured John Elway, Dan Marino and Jim Kelly.
Are we that fortunate? History tells us no, which makes the entire thing a fascinating gamble, but one the place the upside is so excessive that groups don’t discover it onerous to speak themselves into the chance.
Yes, there are a lot of fine QBs on this draft class … for now.
Martin Rogers is a columnist for FOX Sports and the writer of the FOX Sports Insider Newsletter. You can subscribe to the newsletter here.
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