Power Ranking The Top 10 Quarterbacks Eligible For the 2014 NFL Draft
Looking Forward To the 2014 NFL Draft
With the halfway point of both the college football and NFL seasons both coming up quickly it is clear that the 2014 NFL Draft is shaping up to be one filled with quarterbacks being drafted extremely high. The reasoning for this is both because their is a huge number of teams looking for franchise quarterbacks, and there is an even higher number of draft eligible quarterbacks looking to slot into a starting role in 2014.
In terms of teams looking for a franchise quarterback it is utterly apparent that the Arizona Cardinals, Cleveland Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars, Philadelphia Eagles, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers all have no clear cut franchise quarterback. In addition to these teams, though, other teams such as the Houston Texans, New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers, St. Louis Rams, and Tennessee Titans have received very underwhelming play from their quarterbacks in 2013 and could be looking for a player that will motivate their starter to improve at the very least.
Luckily for these teams, and others who are not completely satisfied with who they have behind center, the 2014 NFL Draft is filled with a barrage of draft eligible quarterbacks could end up challenging the epic class of quarterbacks from the 2012 NFL Draft for the best in recent memory.
Unfortunately for fans and executives around the league this quarterback depth in college football has many people's minds spinning trying to figure out the differences in the tenth ranked quarterback from who will be the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft. But fear not, fans, as we have formed a power ranking of the Top 10 quarterbacks who are eligible for the 2014 NFL Draft, in the process providing an easy guide for who your favorite team should pick come May.
10. Keith Price
At 6-foot-1, 202 pounds some would not even give a serious look at Keith Price, but this seriously discredits the fact that he is a truly impressive quarterback. Price has been a three year starter for the Washington Huskies as they have worked to revive their program, and during this time he has shown consistent accuracy and an innate ability to feel pressure and use his quickness to get away from it. But despite an ability to scramble away from defenders Price does not go out looking for rushing yards, in effect making him much more durable than the Robert Griffin IIIs of the world who prefer to go out and run the ball. While many people will not be looking to Price to go high in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft he could certainly be a sleeper pick, much in the way a certain undersized quarterback named Russell Wilson was in 2012.
9. Marcus Mariota
After breaking onto the college football scene in 2012 with 32 passing touchdowns and five rushing touchdowns for the Oregon Ducks it was official that Marcus Mariota had the skill to compete at the college football level. During his second season with the program Mariota has again shown the ability to dominate college football, leading many to speculate whether the redshirt sophomore will put himself in the 2014 NFL Draft. The 6-foot-4, 212-pound quarterback will certainly wow scouts with his 4.5 40-yard dash. And in a world where athleticism is beginning to become extremely valuable from the quarterback position he will surely gain a number of looks. Still, some teams will also be scared off by Mariota's 56.7 percent completion rate in 2013, and in the end it is unlikely he becomes first round pick at the 2014 NFL Draft.
8. Derek Carr
During the 2013 season Derek Carr, the younger brother of David Carr, has brought Fresno State onto the BCS buster scene in stunning fashion. Through five games he has thrown for 1864 yards, 19 touchdowns, a 70.7 percent completion rate and a measly four interceptions. What makes this total even more impressive is that Carr has been almost equally as successful during the 2011 and 2012 seasons, although it must be considered that Fresno State does play some lackluster competition in the Mountain West Conference. With a huge and accurate arm to accompany a 6-foot-3, 218-pound frame, it is likely that given a good rest of the season and a good showing in a BCS bowl, Carr could sneak his way into being a first round pick.
7. Aaron Murray
As a four year starter for the Georgia Bulldogs there can be no doubting that Aaron Murray has a supremely talented arm and has supreme toughness. What will be doubted by NFL scouts is whether Murray has what it takes to come up in big games, which he often hasn't done in college, and also whether his 6-foot-1, 208-pound stature will hold him back at the pro level. Right now those questions would push Murray into the second round, although that may not stop a team from drafting him as a starter much in the way the New York Jets did with Geno Smith this season.
6. Tajh Boyd
While there is no doubt that Tajh Boyd is amongst the contenders for the Heisman Trophy some doubt does linger about whether he can be a successful pro quarterback. The Clemson quarterback has a huge arm and is amongst the most mobile quarterbacks in all of college football, but he also has a propensity to miss wide open targets. When these factors are put together there can be no doubting that Boyd is surely an intriguing option for any team, but his ceiling would seem to be a mid first round selection at this point.
5. Zach Mettenberger
Standing 6-foot-5, 230-pounds and possessing a cannon of a right arm, it is certain that Zach Mettenberger has the type of tools that would have any NFL executive drooling. But behind this skill set comes a somewhat questionable past, as in 2009 Mettenberger was kicked off Georgia's football team after being charged with sexual battery following an incident in Remerton, Georgia. While the now LSU quarterback has not had any troubles since this time it is likely the incident will keep him from becoming the first pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. Do not expect Mettenberger to fall to far, though, as he will likely end up being a top-15 pick in the draft.
4. AJ McCarron
Despite being known as the "game manager" during his three year starting reign at Alabama, there is no doubting that AJ McCarron is a big time prospect heading into the 2014 NFL Draft. The two time BCS champion has thrown 40 touchdowns and six interceptions since the beginning of 2012 and slowly developed into the unquestioned leader of a hugely successful Alabama team. With a huge arm and 6-foot-4 and 214-pound frame to go along with his winning pedigree, it appears that McCarron is a prime candidate to go within the first 10 picks of the 2014 NFL Draft.
3. Brett Hundley
With a 6-foot-3, 222-pound frame, huge arm and scrambling ability to cap it off, few faults can be found in Brett Hundley's play. The redshirt sophomore out of UCLA simply has not struggled in any facet of play during his two year reign as starting quarterback in Los Angeles. With this knowledge it would appear to be a lock that Hundley goes within the first five picks of the 2014 NFL Draft.
2. Johnny Manziel
Say what you want about Johnny Manziel, but the guy can flat out play. The 2012 Heisman Trophy winner out of Texas A&M has a cannon of an arm, has the accuracy to match it and has a quickness that possibly trumps both factors. While some teams will likely pass on Manziel because of his well documented propensity to partying they will likely pay for it in the long term, as he has shown in 2013 that he steps his game up when outsiders begin to doubt him. Manziel may slip to the latter parts of the first round, but he will light up the NFL when given a chance to shine.
1. Teddy Bridgewater
Teddy Bridgewater has been the consensus pick to be the first quarterback off the board for a while, and for good reason. The Louisville quarterback possesses a cannon of an arm that can be matched with almost impeccable accuracy. Possibly even more important than these physical traits, though, is that Bridgewater seems to possess the innate traits such as being a leader and knowing what a defense is going to do when lining up against him which cannot truly be taught. There is no doubt that Bridgewater will be the first quarterback that Roger Goodell calls off of the board at the 2014 NFL Draft, and it is likely he will be the first pick overall.