The Los Angeles Rams have one goal this offseason, and that is to solve the quarterback position whether it be through free agency or the draft. Several mock drafts have the Rams taking Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch with the 15th overall pick. However, if history were to have any say in the matter, it would say not to do it. Don’t take a quarterback with the 15th overall pick.
When it comes to drafting a quarterback in this year’s draft, the Rams can’t get desperate and over draft a player just because of need. The seemingly endless quest for a franchise quarterback, something the Rams haven’t had since really Marc Bulger, can force general managers into making bad decisions.
The fact of the matter is, if a quarterback is the real deal, they are going to be picked in the top ten, it’s that simple. If a team is in need of a quarterback most likely they are picking in the top ten, if not the top five.
The quarterbacks that slip out of the top ten, probably did for good reasons. From 2000 to 2015, a total of 16 quarterbacks were drafted in the No. 12 to 32 range, only two of whom can be considered true franchise quarterbacks. Those quarterbacks are Aaron Rodgers and Joe Flacco.
There is one in the prove it category with Teddy Bridgewater. He did get the Minnesota Vikings to the playoffs, but he still has a ways to go to be considered a franchise guy.
The rest of the group includes bust after bust after bust. Johnny Manzi and Brady Quinn were considered top ten picks by some, but fell. The others? EJ Manuel, Brandon Weeden, Christian Ponder, Tim Tebow, Josh Freeman, Jason Campbell, J.P. Losman, Kyle Boller, Rex Grossman, Patrick Ramsey, and Chad Pennington, who had his ups and downs.
Thats not a very good hit-miss ratio. Of 16 guys only two made it out as franchise quarterbacks for a 12.5% conversion rate.
Looking at the guys drafted 1-11, 16 of the 26 players drafted became franchise quarterbacks. That list includes Michael Vick, Carson Palmer, Eli Manning, Phillip Rivers, Ben Roethlisberger, Alex Smith, Jay Cutler, Matt Ryan, Matthew Stafford, Cam Newton, Sam Bradford, Andrew Luck, Ryan Tannehill, Blake Bortles, Marcus Mariota, and Jameis Winston.
Compared to the 12.5% conversion rate in picks 12-32, the conversion rate is 61.5%. Those are still pretty good odds. Hitting or missing on a quarterback can decide the fate of the franchise and whether or not you’re a team that rises up and become a contender or sink down and remain a bottom five team for the next three years.
Sitting at 15th overall, the Rams could have a very critical decision to make on draft day. The top two quarterback prospects in this year’s draft are Carson Wentz and Jared Goff, both of which will probably be taken in the top ten.
That leaves the elephant in the room, Paxton Lynch.
He’s a raw prospect that didnt play against a lot of top talent at small school Memphis. He has the size and the arm, but his footwork and accuracy still need a lot of work. Draft experts and scouts have compared him to be like Blake Bortles in the sense that he will need to be developed into a starting NFL quarterback, but even he was taken with the third overall pick and that turned out well for the Jaguars.
When it comes to the 2016 NFL Draft, the top two quarterbacks are Wentz and Goff, and even they have their flaws. Simply put, this isn’t a very good offensive draft, especially at the top, and it’s more wise to build a defense rather than reach for an offensive need.
The Los Angeles Rams need a quarterback, but they can’t get desperate come draft day or it could come to haunt them.