NFL Draft: The Myth of the Sure Thing QB

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May 9, 2014; Berea, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns first round draft picks Justin Gilbert (Oklahoma State) and Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M) are introduced to the media with head coach Mike Pettine (left) and general Manager Ray Farmer (left) at the Cleveland Browns Headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Andrew Luck, Peyton Manning, Eli Manning, Robert Griffin III and…. The NFL Draft has had a number of quarterbacks coming out of college who some/many thought were a “sure thing.” This has become a topic of conversation for Cleveland Browns fans when thinking about the possibility of drafting, or trading up to draft, Marcus Mariota.

It is a part of a common theme that we have heard about Mariota from fans:

  • He is not a sure thing.
  • He is a system quarterback.
  • Next year’s draft is much better at the position.
  • He isn’t worth trading anything to move up for.
  • It is too early to give up on Johnny Manziel.

Generally the first two arguments are the strongest with a vocal minority still in favor of Manziel. Some still deny the need for a Franchise level QB, even though the starters in the Playoffs tell us how important the position really is.

So we want to take a look at the idea of “sure thing” quarterbacks and see if it is real. Much like the scene from the move “Draft Day” when Kevin Costner’s character talks about John Elways, Peyton Manning and Joe Montana and the parts of their games that “didn’t seem to matter.” We are going to look back at current starters drafted in the 1st round, and some exceptions, and see if they were considered a “sure thing.”

Our order will start with the best QBs in the league and work our way through.

Next: Aaron Rodgers