With the news that Case Keenum will enter week one the starter for the Los Angeles Rams, many Rams’ fans begrudgingly wiped Carson Wentz, Jared Goff, and Paxton Lynch off of their big board. Although this bold statement isn’t exactly trustworthy (the same thing was said about Sam Bradford last season and we all know how that turned out) but let’s explore the possibility this is true.
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Keenum starting week one means more likely than not the first three to four rounds the Rams will not select a QB. This is because: 1. They believe Case can become a quality starter in the NFL and can be dragged to the playoffs by Gurley and Co. or 2. They are going to wait until next season to select their QB of the future.I prefer to believe the latter but the former is possible, given the Rams past personnel decisions.
Either way the Rams aren’t likely to burn a pick in the first or second on a QB simply because their draft position won’t give them great options. By pick fifteen Carson Wentz and Jared Goff will already have signed their contracts and moved houses, Paxton Lynch, who is likely going to be available, is a reach. By the second round, where the Rams have two picks, Lynch will be gone leaving them Connor Cook and Christian Hackenburg, hopefully.
Connor Cook is a so-so NFL talent and Hackenburg is lucky to have made it out of Penn State alive considering their offensive line woes. By round three teams are looking for gems or small school athletes who have been overlooked. By round four teams are looking for projects who have a small chance of becoming NFL starters.
Enter Cardale Jones. Jones, who was best known for tweeting about playing school, was thrown to the wolves at the beginning of the first ever college playoff system for college football. How did Jones respond after starter J.T. Barrett fell to a knee injury? He balled out. After running over Wisconsin, he upset Alabama and led the Buckeyes to a championship. Overall that season he put seven touchdowns through the air and one on the ground in limited time with only two interceptions. He won the starting job over Barrett and proceed to start the first couple of games.
Jones struggled but a lot of the blame could be put on the offensive system, while Jones deserves the rest. Jones was benched for Barrett and OSU finished the season with one loss. Jones’ college career stats are fifteen touchdowns through the air, four on the ground, several picks, with over twenty-three hundred yards passing.
Looking at Jones’ stats, his numbers don’t fly off the paper, his attributes do however. Cardale comes in at 6’5 250 lbs, Jones looks more like a linebacker than quarterback. Jones has top-tier athleticism, almost Cam Newton levels. He can run between the tackles and outside, but most importantly Jones has a cannon arm. Jones’ accuracy has come under fire but if his tape is looked at, his accuracy issues are overrated. Jones is a more athletic Ben Roethlisberger with a robot arm attached. Even with Jones’ issues last season, he is a winner. He clutched out many wins for OSU and led them to a championship.
I personally believe under the right circumstances Jones will become a pro bowl level player, especially after his exceptional pro day. Under the bright lights in LA, Jones will shine and become the QB of the future.