Last month we kicked off our Chicago Bears Roster Turnover series with the quarterback position, and the question about drafting a QB arose. It's also a popular topic on Chicago sports radio, as the quarterback position is the "go to" topic to rile up Bears fans. Most seem against the idea, even though Jay Cutler's current backup would be Jerrod Johnson, who is signed to a reserve/futures contract.
The top argument against drafting a guy is that it's assumed Josh McCown will be re-signed, a sentiment I happen to agree with. But even if McCown is brought back, it'll probably be a 2-3 year deal at most, and then what...
Cutler's giant seven year contract was essentially a three year deal, with four one year deals after that. It's not necessary to have a guy in the pipeline to take over for Cutler and/or McCown, but with a quarterback guru as head coach and a well respected QB coach in place, why not get a guy to develop?
Yesterday Chicago general manager Phil Emery broached the possibility of drafting a quarterback if they can't reach an agreement with McCown. Luckily free agency falls well before the draft, so we'll know exactly what the Bears need at the position in about a month. Back in December Emery said of the 2014 QB class, "It's probably one of the better ones in a long time."
There could be four or five quarterbacks selected in the 1st round on May 8th, with a few more going on day two. Depending on how the draft falls, picking a young prospect could make sense. Emery seems like a guy that trusts his board, so if there's a highly graded QB sitting there in the 3rd or 4th round, I think he pulls the trigger.
I also think Emery will be looking to trade down from multiple spots to add to their seven picks, and if he manages to do that I think the likelihood of picking a QB increases.
Here are a few players that could entice the Bears if the draft falls just right.
Alabama's A.J. McCarron is a guy that has some scouts differing over his draft position. Mike Mayock from the NFL Network has him listed as his #5 QB. Other scouting services have him with a 3rd-5th round projection. I think he's a cerebral player with good fundamentals that could thrive in the right system.
You hear the term "game manager" thrown around about McCarron, and as I've said in the past, I don't look at that negatively. He's an average athlete with an average arm, that understands his limitations. He's accurate, he's run a pro style offense and he's from a big time college program.
Clemson's Tajh Boyd checked in at 6'1" and 222 pounds today at the NFL combine. And speaking of the combine, Boyd needs a good showing throwing the football to help his stock after being inaccurate at the Senior Bowl. He was near a 70% completion rate in 2013, but that was on a lot of short passes.
He didn't run a pro offense at Clemson, so he's a couple years away from being NFL ready, but his upside could be worth a late round draft pick. CBS Sports predicts him to be a 7th round pick or an undrafted free agent. NFL.com grades him as a potential starter, Walter Football predicts him from the 1st to the 3rd round, and at least one NFL scout calls him undraftable.
Another middle round prospect is San Jose State's David Fales. I've seen him with between a 3rd and 5th round grade, and some scouts peg him as a good fit for the west coast offense. He's lauded for his quick decision making, but he needs to show he can work through his progressions at the NFL level.
The competition in the Mountain West is also working against him, but he did put up some very impressive stats in his two years as a starter. If he's sitting there in the 5th round, is he worth a pick for Marc Trestman and Matt Cavanaugh to groom?
What do you think about the Bears possibly of drafting any of these three players?
Is there another QB you have your eye on?