Cleat Geeks

Hit, Miss, or Meh : The Collegiate Quarterback Conflict

With the bountiful selection of collegiate quarterbacks entering the 2015 NFL Draft, including Marcus Mariota, Jameis Winston, Brett Hundley, and Bryce Petty, I thought it’d be best to overview the success of rookie quarterbacks who’ve began their career as a pro in recent years. There’s always an uncertainty of how well college quarterbacks will perform at the pro level though, because while some have shined bright under the Monday Night lights, others have faltered greatly. Taking this into consideration, it’s easy to label these rookie quarterbacks as either a hit, miss, or an in between; ‘meh’.

Bengals QB Andy Dalton

Bengals QB Andy Dalton

Andy Dalton: Being a big Bengals fan myself, I cannot express enough how painful it is to watch Dalton’s team play. That very reason being Andy Dalton. After finishing up his collegiate career as a quarterback at Texas Christian University, he was picked up in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. Dalton provided promise to a suffering Cincinnati team who had finished 4-12 in the 2010 regular season after. The following year, Andy Dalton led the 9-7 Bengals to a Wild Card Playoff game against the Houston Texans (which they lost 31-10). Since then, he has led the Bengals to 10-6 (2012), 11-5 (2013), and 10-5-1 (2014) seasons including 3 more playoff games (and losses), making the Bengals 0-4 in postseason victories. This season he averaged one interception per game, and although Dalton has achieved a career 99 touchdowns and 66 interceptions, his inconsistency has cost his team valuable wins, thus putting him on my ‘meh list’.

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson

Russell Wilson: Without a doubt, one of the best rookies within recent years. The Seattle Seahawks, who finished the 2011 season 9-7, picked up Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson who took the team into the 2012 season divisional playoffs (where they lost to the Falcons 30-28) after an 11-5 season. Wilson then led the Seahawks to a 13-3 regular season in 2013 as well as a 43-8 Super Bowl XLVIII victory over the red-hot 13-3 Denver Broncos. As if that wasn’t enough, Wilson led his 12-4 team to a repeat Super Bowl appearance in the 2014 season against the 12-4 New England Patriots (they were however defeated in that game 28-24). Leading your team to two Super Bowls in the matter of three years in the league is quite the accomplishment, and with 72 career touchdowns and 26 interceptions, Wilson is a definite ‘hit’.

Colts QB Andrew Luck

Colts QB Andrew Luck

Andrew Luck: Following Peyton Manning’s 2010 season departure from Indianapolis in the wake of a neck injury (and the eventual transfer to Denver), the Colts took a steep plummet to the bottom of the NFL standings. Finishing the 2011 season 2-14, Indianapolis was desperate for a quarterback to lead them back to Super Bowl contention. Luck seemed to swing their way (mind the pun) after the 2012 NFL Draft pick out of Stanford (Andrew Luck), brought them to the playoffs after finishing the season at a decent 11-5. Since then, the Colts have fought neck-and-neck for their spot in the Super Bowl, making it to the playoffs in 2013 and 2014 after 11-5 seasons. Luck is still finding his ground in Indiana, but with 86 career touchdowns and 43 interceptions, he joins Wilson on my ‘hit list’.

Redskins QB Robert Griffin III

Redskins QB Robert Griffin III

Robert Griffin III: The Washington Redskins, who hadn’t had a glimpse of the playoffs since their 2007 season (35-14) loss to Seattle, needed rebirth. That hope came in the 2012 season when they picked up Heisman winner Robert Griffin III out of Baylor. “R.G. III” led his 10-6 team to their first playoff game in 5 years against (coincidently) the Seattle Seahawks where they again lost (24-14). That playoff loss wasn’t the worst of it for the Redskins though. Griffin, who had already been pained with a knee sprain, reinjured himself during their loss, resulting in him being carted off the field as well as the recurring of ailments to haunt him in the following seasons. Since that excruciating loss to the Seahawks, Griffin has never been the same. Under Griffin the Redskins fell to 3-10 in the 2013 season, with Kirk Cousins (the backup quarterback from Michigan State) finishing the season (0-3) after R.G. III’s embarrassing loss to the Chiefs (45-10). To make matters worse, Griffin only started in 7 of the 16 regular season games in 2014, losing all but one of them. With 40 career touchdowns and 23 interceptions as well as substantial injuries, Robert Griffin III lands himself on my ‘miss list’.

Panthers QB Cam Newton

Panthers QB Cam Newton

Cam Newton: The Carolina Panthers, who finished the 2010 regular season at 2-14, used their high-up draft pick to choose Heisman-winning quarterback Cam Newton from Auburn in the 1st round. In the 2011 season, Newton led Carolina to finishing 6-10, and then a progressively better 7-9 in 2012. It wasn’t until the 2013 season however (Newton’s 3rd year) that he was able to get the ball rollin’, leading his team to a dominant 12-4 regular season and a playoff game (and loss) against the San Francisco 49ers. They returned to the playoffs in 2014 after ‘winning’ their division with a 7-8-1 record, only to lose to the Seahawks 31-17. Newton, who has shown promise at times (82 career touchdowns and 54 interceptions), has not quite met his possible potential as a Panther, thus placing him on my ‘miss list’.

Other Hits: Ryan Tannehill, Colin Kaepernick, Matthew Stafford, Matt Ryan.
Other Misses: Johnny Manziel, Zach Mettenberger, Blake Bortles, Tim Tebow, Mark Sanchez.
Other Mehs: Nick Foles, Sam Bradford, Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr.

One Comment

  1. nfl playoffs

    March 21, 2015 at 12:01 am

    Absolutely not intresting article. How can you write this.

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