Good day fellow Bears fans! I've decided to see the silver lining in my broken shoulder and use the sudden influx of free time to contribute to one of my favorite sites, which I haven't done in quite a while. Today we are going to determine how reliable our top draft pick could be, based on how highly-drafted QBs have fared in recent years. All stats were gotten from NFL.com.
I've done some research and broke down the career stats of every QB taken in the top half of the first round from 2006-2016. I included how many games each player started in their rookie year as well as if they are currently a starter in the league. I also separated them into three categories based on a combination of career longevity, potential, stats, and overall team success with that QB.
Red = Unsuccessful pick/Not looking good
Yellow = Moderate pick/Too early to tell
Green = Successful pick/Benefit of the doubt
|Player Information||Career Passing||Career Rushing|
|Year Drafted (Pick #)||Name||Team||GS Rookie Year||Current Starter?||Comp||Att||Pct||Yds||Avg||TD||Int||Sck||Att||Yds||Avg||TD||FUM||Lost|
|2016 (1)||Jared Goff||Rams||7||no||112||205||55||1,089||5.3||5||7||26||8||16||2||1||5||2|
|2016 (2)||Carson Wentz||Eagles||16||yes||379||607||62.4||3,782||6.2||16||14||33||46||150||3.3||2||14||3|
|2015 (1)||Jameis Winston||Buccaneers||16||yes||657||1,102||59.6||8,132||7.4||50||33||62||107||378||3.5||7||16||8|
|2015 (2)||Marcus Mariota||Titans||12||yes||506||821||61.6||6,244||7.6||45||19||61||94||601||6.4||4||19||11|
|2014 (3)||Blake Bortles||Jaguars||13||yes||1,003||1,706||58.8||11,241||6.6||69||51||140||166||1,088||6.6||5||29||12|
|2013 (16)||EJ Manuel||Bills||10||no||319||547||58.3||3,502||6.4||19||15||43||94||324||3.4||4||11||5|
|2012 (1)||Andrew Luck||Colts||16||yes||1,570||2,651||59.2||19,078||7.2||132||68||156||286||1,442||5||14||38||19|
|2012 (2)||Robert Griffin||Redskins||15||no||766||1,210||63.3||8,983||7.4||42||26||123||275||1,670||6.1||10||36||11|
|2012 (8)||Ryan Tannehill||Dolphins||16||yes||1,653||2,637||62.7||18,455||7||106||66||213||216||1,065||4.9||6||46||17|
|2011 (1)||Cam Newton||Panthers||16||yes||1,710||2,928||58.4||21,772||7.4||136||78||221||689||3,566||5.2||48||35||17|
|2011 (8)||Jake Locker||Titans||0||no||408||709||57.5||4,967||7||27||22||60||95||644||6.8||5||10||6|
|2011 (10)||Blaine Gabbert||Jaguars||14||no||686||1,226||56||7,351||6||38||37||110||148||549||3.7||3||25||9|
|2011 (12)||Christian Ponder||Vikings||10||no||632||1,057||59.8||6,658||6.3||38||36||95||126||639||5.1||7||20||11|
|2010 (1)||Sam Bradford||Rams||16||yes||1,773||2,844||62.3||18,667||6.6||98||57||185||142||336||2.4||2||47||19|
|2009 (1)||Matthew Stafford||Lions||10||yes||2,634||4,285||61.5||30,303||7.1||187||108||242||242||851||3.5||14||44||18|
|2009 (5)||Mark Sanchez||Jets||15||no||1,295||2,285||56.7||15,219||6.7||86||86||161||169||449||2.7||13||51||24|
|2008 (3)||Matt Ryan||Falcons||16||yes||3,288||5,064||64.9||37,701||7.4||240||114||255||319||880||2.8||5||49||24|
|2007 (1)||Jamarcus Russell||Raiders||1||no||354||680||52.1||4,083||6||18||23||70||40||175||4.4||1||25||15|
|2006 (3)||Vince Young||Titans||13||no||755||1,304||57.9||8,964||6.9||46||51||83||282||1,459||5.2||12||40||12|
|2006 (10)||Matt Leinart||Cardinals||11||no||366||641||57.1||4,065||6.3||15||21||30||47||89||1.9||2||11||3|
|2006 (11)||Jay Cutler||Broncos||5||no||2,782||4,491||61.9||32,467||7.2||208||146||302||367||1,650||4.5||9||89||38|
Here are the tidbits that I'd like to point out:
1. The Rams, Jaguars, and Titans show up in this table multiple times, with the Titans making three top ten picks at the QB position. To me, this indicates a couple things. First, the decision makers of these teams aren't afraid to go get their guy when they find him. Second, they may want to consider changing how they grade quarterbacks. Of those 7 picks, only Mariota received a green ranking, and that could easily change depending on how healthy he turns out to be in his career.
2. Goff got a red ranking after just one year. If you think that's too harsh, I invite you to give me any evidence that he will be successful in the NFL. I personally am rooting for him, and I hope that his struggles had more to do with terrible coaching than his own deficiencies, but the fact that he couldn't beat out Case Keenum and at times was third on the depth chart is not a good sign.
3. If they didn't get the starting job right away, they generally didn't pan out. Of the players that started less than 12 games their rookie year (Cutler, Leinart, Russell, Stafford, Ponder, Locker, Manuel, and Goff) only Stafford received a green ranking, and Cutler is the only other that wasn't ranked red. Whether it be due to injuries, bad coaching, or the inability to beat out the competition, it would appear that not winning and keeping the starting job from the start is not a good sign.
4. Cutler's career looks very similar to Stafford's, as does the overall success of his teams, but I ranked him lower due to the number of negative plays in a comparable number of attempts. Cutler has 38 more INTs, 60 more sacks, and 45 more fumbles. Even if all those mistakes aren't entirely his fault, it was enough for me to give him a yellow ranking.
5. As a Bears fan, I feel it's worth noting that Jameis Winston forced our current presumed starter out of Tampa Bay with his play. If what the Bears are saying is true and this is the "Year of Glennon" in Chicago, and also assuming that the coaches are trying to put the best product on the field, the transitive property tells us that we can't expect Trubisky to play at the same level as Winston has. For those of us who haven't used algebra since grade school (which, let's be honest, that means most of us) the transitive property states that if a>b and b>c, then a>c. In football terms, if Winston is better than Glennon, and Glennon is better than Trubisky, Winston must be better than Trubisky. Of course, this is an over-simplification and there are more variables to consider, but it's something to think about. If you knew right now that we are in for 75% of Jameis Winston at QB for the next 5-10 years, would you be ok with the pick? It's not like Winston has been bad by any stretch, and his arrow is definitely pointing up, but I might be disappointed if that's how Trubisky turns out.
Of course, this is all just for the sake of the conversation. I'm an optimist, so I don't fully believe that Glennon will be the starter for very long. I'd like to think that if Trubisky is outplaying Glennon in OTAs, practices, and pre-season, our coaches will let Trubisky play despite Glennon's contract. We've all seen enough QB battles play out to know that when coaches and GMs come out in the middle of May and say "QB A is the starter", there's an implied "for now" at the end of that sentence. I'm not saying that Glennon can't be successful, but I'd also be lying if I said I was ok with him being the starter all year based on what we've seen of him to this point.
So, if we are looking to determine whether or not Trubisky will pan out based on recent history, the answer is truly "Who the hell knows?". Of the 21 QBs on this list, 11 are no longer starters in the NFL and only 6 are what I would consider "Franchise Players" at this point. My hopes are high that our coaching staff can get the most out of Trubisky and the rest of the team and that they will be playoff contenders within a year or two with a solid, young base of players on both sides of the ball.
Well, that's all I've got for you. Go ahead and hit the comments with your thoughts and we can continue to debate this until someone is eventually proven right. I've also added a poll so you can all give your input on who you think our Bears should start this year. Thanks for reading and, as always, bear down.