Friday, October 1, 2010
Attention Bills fans: 2011 QB draft report
By Tim Graham
Is it ever too early to talk about the next NFL draft?
Not when your team has no chance to make the playoffs, legitimately could secure the No. 1 overall draft choice and needs a quarterback.
The Buffalo Bills fit those criteria. Bills fans have been dissecting college quarterbacks since the season started, and with this week's decision to flat-out dump opening-day starter Trent Edwards, those Saturday games take on even greater significance.
ESPN draft experts Mel Kiper and Todd McShay recently shared their thoughts on how the top quarterbacks in the 2011 draft class look.
Both agreed Stanford sophomore Andrew Luck is at the top of their draft boards regardless of position.
"Andrew Luck has to be the choice right now," McShay said. "He continues to develop. He's been coached extremely well. He has the size and the pocket mobility. I'm not talking about taking off and running. Moving around the pocket, buying extra time, throwing down the field ... I would like to see a little bit more consistency out of him in terms of his accuracy. That would continue to happen with more game experience."
Kiper cautioned it's way early to chisel anything in stone, but Luck has outplayed Washington's Jake Locker and Arkansas' Ryan Mallett. Kiper said other quarterbacks to look out for in the early rounds are Delaware's Pat Devlin and Florida State's Christian Ponder.
Still, Kiper projected Luck as the best player in the draft.
"You look at his skill set," Kiper said, "what he brings to the table, not just the size and the arm strength and the mind, the mental aspects of the game you want in your quarterback, but mobility. When you have a breakdown and you have opportunity to run the football, he can pick up that first down, keep the chains moving. He's very underrated in that regard. You think you've defensed the pass and he can't beat you with his legs."