In case you haven't noticed, the draft is coming up soon. Also, in case you haven't noticed, the Seahawks have a glaring hole in their lineup at QB. Right now, Charlie Whitehurst is the only QB signed for 2011. Will he be the week one starter? That's a great question. I'll probably be spending a lot of time speculating about the QB position and that's why the majority of content has been on the QB question today.
NFL Network's Michael Lombardi was on Brock and Salk this morning talking primarily about Jake Locker's Pro Day. The topic of what Seattle will do at QB of course came up, and Lombardi talked on Andy Dalton, Colin Kaepernick, Christian Ponder and a few others in generalities, mostly things you already knew - Dalton is a good leader, Kaepernick is a good athlete, Ponder.. I don't remember what he said about Ponder but I hope we don't draft him.
Either way, what he said about Mallett is worth mentioning. Brock asked Lombardi who he thinks is the best fit for the Hawks.
I would think of Seattle, just knowing what Seattle does, I would think that Ryan Mallett is more of their guy. I think Ryan Mallett fits more of what they want to do. You know, if you want to throw the ball vertically up the field, if you want to make big plays with your passing game, then Ryan Mallett's the guy. And if you can get comfortable with who is he as a person, then I think he can clearly make an impact on your football team.
So I think it ultimately comes down to, if you want to throw deep outs, and you want to throw comebacks, if you want to throw posts, then I think Ryan Mallett's the right guy. If you want to run a short passing, a control passing game, you might look to Andy Dalton. And I think there lies the answer…
It's all about what your expectations are and what you're looking for. In Seattle, what they're looking for - Mallett can throw short passes as well as anybody, and he can throw the deep ball, so he can expand the field. And remember this, and this is the most critical aspect of evaluating a QB, how they play in college, is ultimately going to be similar to how they play in the NFL.
And he goes on to talk about Joe Montana - he was good in college, led some great comebacks, and was not drafted until the 3rd round. Same with Tony Romo, who was great at Eastern Illinois then went undrafted. Tom Brady, was great at Michigan but was misevaluated and fell to the 6th round. Ryan Mallett was very good in college, in the best conference in college football. He has fallen because of character issues, period.
When Brock goes on to ask what the Hawks should do at #25, Lombardi answers by stating that if Mallett or Dalton or whoever is your guy - you have to take him there because a good QB makes your team - makes every other player on your offense - 40% better.
He went on to describe how every team except for maybe five with great QB's work around the guys that they have according to what their strengths and deficiencies are.
You have to coach the QB and project him. Ryan Mallett was in a pro offense. Ryan Mallett was changing plays at the line of scrimmage. Ryan Mallett was running run-pass. Ryan Mallett was doing a lot of things.
He's going to come into the NFL, and assuming his off the field character stuff is pretty good, he's going to play just like he did at Arkansas. He's going to make a lot of throws, he's going to be really good.
He's going to be like Joe Flacco. He's going to be very similar to him. Now is Joe Flacco a franchise QB? They've made it to the playoffs three years in a row. Their defense has carried them, but he's coming along. He's got his deficiencies, they're learning them as they go along, and they're building around him. I think that's what you gotta do.
Seems to make sense to me. Many people have Mallett as the most pro-ready QB in the draft, even higher than Gabbert. At this point, if you haven't already figured it out, I'm in Mallett's corner. I think he's going to have a good career in the NFL. I've been wrong before though.