After what can only be described as a disaster on Sunday, many Bills fans are finding themselves in the early stages of the phenomenon known as tanking. This is when a fan actually roots for his or her team to lose in order to procure a high draft choice and pick a highly coveted prospect. In most cases it’s usually for a franchise QB option and comes with a catchy name like ‘Suck for Luck’. This year will be no different with the catchy phrases and fans wanting to jump off the bridge after only a few games but is it going to be necessary?
While it’s still very early in the college football season, five QB prospects have begun to set themselves apart from the rest of the pack as possible (or dare I say even probable) 1st Round caliber talents. They are; Matt Barkely (USC), Tyler Wilson (Arkansas), Geno Smith (West Virignia), Logan Thomas* (Virginia Tech), and Tyler Bray* (Tennessee). Now while neither junior (Thomas or Bray) are guaranteed to come out for the purposes of this article we will make the assumption that they do.
Now you may be sitting there saying well among those five here must be some kind of tier system, but surprisingly there isn’t, here are our quick snapshots on each;
Best leader of the group, he understands how to play QB, sees the defense extremely well and always stays calm under pressure. Has questions about his size and arm strength, but can make every NFL throw.
Probably the biggest gunslinger in the group, he thinks he can make every throw no matter the coverage and he loves to prove himself right. He’s got a nice arm but rumors are floating about his size, and with the current cloud surrounding his injury status his stock may be the rockiest.
Geno Smith-West Virginia
The most athletic QB of this group, he can beat you with his arm or legs. He’s very quick in the pocket and has a rocket arm. His mechanics need some tweaking and he’s still a bit raw.
Logan Thomas*-Virginia Tech
The 6’6, 260 lbs Thomas is considered by many to be the next Cam Newton, he runs well, he throws a nice deep ball and he’s really improved in recent years. Thomas needs to continue to grow though, he doesn’t place the ball on the level of the other QB’s and he still doesn’t read defenses that well.
Classic NFL style QB with nice size, a big arm, and a willingness to stand in the pocket and take a shot. Bray’s issues have been decision making both on and off the field however through two weeks he seems to look better than ever.
All five prospects have their individual strengths and all five have their individual weaknesses and right now it’s almost a complete crapshoot as to who is going to be the best of this group.
Now that we’ve identified the amount of prospects available we need to identify how many teams need QB’s as it stands today. Eleven teams started QB’s with three years or less experience on opening weekend and that usually indicates that those team are either set or at least sticking with their prospect QB to see what they have. Of those teams seven picked before the Bills in 2012 (Indianapolis, Washington, Cleveland, Minnesota, Carolina, Miami, and Jacksonville). The other two teams (Dallas, and Tampa Bay) appear set at QB for the time being with Tony Romo and the young Josh Freeman.
That leaves only the Bills as the lone top ten team from last years draft that doesn’t have a young or stable QB. That’s not to say they are the only team that picked high that has a need at QB, the Chiefs (11th), Cardinals (13th), and Raiders (No 1st Rounder) all need QB help and they all sit on a similar if not lower tier of talent.
We identified seven potential teams looking for QB help early on in 2013. They are the Arizona Cardinals, the San Francisco 49ers, New York Jets, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Jacksonville Jaguars, and of course our own Buffalo Bills. Of those seven teams the 49ers, Jets, Jaguars, and Raiders all have young QB’s with some promise ahead of them. That leaves only three teams with top tier QB needs in the Cardinals, the Chiefs, and the Bills.
So when you look at it that way, what reason do we have to tank? There are five top QB options but only three true teams that need QB’s. You play to win the games, so let’s do that and see where the chips fall.
That all being said if we are going to use catchy phrases again this year, than I suggest the following:
“Blow for Barkley” …Ok we borrowed this one from somebody else
“Worst for Wilson”
“Give Up for Geno”
“Lose for Logan”
“Pray for Bray”