Teams are about to use the volumes of information to guide them through the 2015 NFL Draft (April 30-May 2), but *Around The NFL *editor Gregg Rosenthal reflected Friday on quarterbacks selected a year ago and re-ranked them.
The present year is as far forward in time as Doc Brown and Marty McFly ever made it in the Back to the Future movie series. McFly tried to turn hindsight into foresight with a sports almanac of results and the time machine but unintentionally created a mutated world where Biff Tannen was the most powerful man in Hill Valley.
Rosenthal incorporated evaluation of stats and film review from last season by using NFL Game Rewind to conclude that Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater, who was the third quarterback selected in 2014 at the 32nd overall spot, should have been the first QB off the board. Click here for Rosenthal's full recap:
Rosenthal credited Bridgewater's "crafty and composed" nature and equated him to a non-assuming pickup basketball player who "keeps running the point for the winning side."
Bridgewater's strong finish to a season in which he set or tied 91 team records, including most starts (12), wins (six) and highest completion percentage (64.4) and passer rating (85.2) by a Vikings rookie moved him past classmates.
"In a league where the best quarterbacks win before the snap, Bridgewater showed more sustainable traits than any of his rookie classmates. He was accurate, especially on in-breaking routes. He was very calm in the pocket despite poor pass protection. By December, he had cut down on his mental mistakes and started to throw more beauties. His season had an arc to it; you could see his weekly improvement. With the help of Norv Turner, the Vikings' offense looked professional. Bridgewater led the way despite a shaky receiver group.
*"Bridgewater's five-game closing December sprint was often brilliant and showed his floor as a mid-range NFL starter like Alex Smith or Andy Dalton. Teddy's arm strength and deep ball accuracy are open questions that could limit his ceiling, but Bridgewater is off to a great start. He has the potential to develop into an upper echelon distributor in the mold of Drew Brees. It would be a surprise if he's not still starting in the league in eight years." *
While the Vikings have expressed a similar sentiment in thinking Bridgewater's play indicated he could be poised for prolonged success in Minnesota, they've also said they might look at a developmental prospect in this year's draft.
Rosenthal grouped Blake Bortles (third overall selection by Jacksonville), Zach Mettenberger (178th overall by Tennessee), Derek Carr (36th overall) and Jimmy Garoppolo (62nd overall by New England) in the "has a chance" category. Others are predicted to have an "uphill climb."