During the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft, most of the teams in need of a quarterback showed restraint in not reaching for one as only the Buffalo Bills ended the night with a new signal caller. But for the rest of the teams that may be looking to draft a quarterback in either the second or third round, there is another option besides taking a chance on one of the remaining quarterbacks. That option is New England Patriots‘ backup Ryan Mallett.
Mallett was drafted by the Patriots in the third round in the 2011 NFL Draft as more of an investment than as a player that would inevitably succeed Tom Brady. The Patriots trading away their first round pick last night is a sign that they are looking to accumulate mid-round picks, indicating that they may be looking to trade Mallett and cash in on their investment if the price is right.
It’s been easy to forget about Mallett over the past two years, but he’s a quarterback with prototypical size and arm strength that had the talent of a mid-to-late first round pick coming out of college. Mallett fell all the way to the third round because of some off-field incidents, character issues, and struggles in big games, but during the past two seasons he has stayed out of trouble and been able to observe and learn from Brady.
Although he has just four career pass attempts in the NFL, Mallett should be ready to move out of the backup role in New England and move into a starting role somewhere else. He is more talented than most, if not all, of the remaining quarterbacks in the draft and he has the advantage of two years of grooming in one of the best organizations in the NFL. If all it’s going to cost is a second or third round draft pick, then the teams in need of a quarterback would be better off using that pick to trade for Mallett than using it to draft any of the remaining players in this year’s weak quarterback class.