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The Case for Going QB Early (Long)

#1

It’s not a stretch to suggest the prevailing paradigm amongst Jaguars fans and possibly the Jaguars’ brass is to go with Minshew as the starting QB and use at least substantial portions of our plentiful draft capital in putting blockers and weapons around him to maximize the chances of him succeeding.  I readily concede this is not an unreasonable approach to next month’s draft, one I have explored if not outright advocated at various points throughout the offseason.  As unfortunate the circumstances surrounding his insertion into the lineup were, his play exceeded all reasonable expectations for a rookie 6th round passer and the performance of many veterans, and even that of first overall pick Kyler Murray.  In a rare case of unity in this franchise, the front office, coaches and fans all seem to love him.  We owe it to him and everyone above to ensure if ;ast year’s performance were not an aberration and to see just how far he can go with an improved supporting cast.  Employing this strategy, we see what we have in Minshew.  If he succeeds, the position is finally fixed.  If he fails, we can use our draft capital next year to go after Trevor Lawrence, one of the best QB prospects to come along in years.  But I would be remiss if I did not express countervailing considerations.  I submit that certainties of the past, realities of the present, and uncertainties of the future should force this front office to strongly consider taking a signal caller in the first round this year.
 
History suggests we should not put all of our eggs in the Minshew basket just yet.  There were at least three times in team history where we put all of the team’s hopes on a young QB, eschewed the position subsequent to that, and bypassed possible Hall of fame caliber talent at the position to our detriment.  In 2003 the team drafted Byron Leftwich.  Subsequent drafts saw us do what NFL teams traditionally doo when they get a signal caller-draft weapons around him in the effort to maximize his chances to succeed.  These efforts resulted in bypass signal callers like Ben Roethlisberger in 2004 and Aaron Rodgers in 2005, The effect was exacerbated when the players drafted to bolster the weapons around him failed with the busts of Reggie Williams and matt Jones.  This pattern was repeated in Blaine Gabbert in 2011, drafting Justin Blackmon in 2012, and bypassing Russell Wilson  that same year.  The third gut punch to Jaguars nation happened when the team drafted Blake Bortles in 2014.  Even though the front office was a little more successful in putting weapons around him with the additions o Marquise Lee, Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns, the decision to add RB Leonard Fournette at the top of the 2017 draft led to the team bypassing QBs Patrick Mahomes and DeShaun Watson.  The end result of those premature QB decisions resulted in watching teams like Pittsburgh, Green Bay and Kansas City ascend to win four Super Bowls and reach numerous playoffs subce 2003, while the Jaguars have not reached any Super Bowls in our history, and have only been to the playoffs three (3) times since 2000.  If there is a potential franchise QB available, we should not pass him up even if we like Minshew.
 
Currently reality also suggests we should take a QB high this year.  The overall consensus is that four (4) QBs will be drafted in the first round this year.  Joe Burrow is a virtual lock to go to Cincinnati with the first pick, while most projuect Alabama’s Tua Tagoavila and Oregon’s Justin Herbert to be top ten picks, while Untah State’s Jordan Love has been projected to go as high as 9 but mostly through the mid to late first round.  None of us have any clue as to how the Jaguars’ board is set up or will be set up by draft day, but at this point, it is not a total stretch to state the BPA on the Jaguars board may well be a QB at 9 or 20.  With Tua’s injury history, it wouldn’t be a total shock to see risk averse teams above us to pass on him.  Similarly, I know many of people who are less than enthused about Herbert, and skeptical regarding Jordan Love, which isn’t too different from 2017, when people didn’t like Mahomes and Watson.  The fact is, if Marino can fall to around 27th overall , Brady can fall to 199th overall, Rodgers could sall to approximately 24th pverall, Russell Wilson could fall to the 3rd round, and Brady to 199th overall, these guys could fall to us.  If the team has them ranked accordingly, they should not hesitate to pull the trigger on picking them.  Furthermore, we have a need at the position.  Aside Minshew, the only QB we have is Joshua Dobbs, obtained via trade from Pittsburgh after Foles was hurt.  While Dobbs is scary smart, he isn’t likely the answer to the backup QB position, much less the hall of fame long term signal caller this team needs.  Pittsburgh traded him away AFTER they lost Big Ben for the year.  It’s not as if they were loaded at the position behind Big Ben.  Neither of the current Steelers backups are very good, but were desired over Dobbs.  Finally competition at the position will make the position stronger.  A common complaint uttered during Leftwich’s tenure is that he never had to compete for the QB position.  Taking a QB high and making him and Minshew compete for playing time would let everyone on the team-including the QBs-know no position is safe, and that everyone has to perform.  That will optimize performance.  Furthermore, taking a QB early now does not necessarily defeat the idea of taking a QB high next year.  If we were to draft a QB this year and we hit on him as a franchise QB, we’d have his services one year early.  If we missed on him, we still have time to rebound.

Finally, I believe the uncertainty surrounding the future makes deferring on QB until next year a most risky proposition on any number of levels.  During normal circumstances, it’s risky because you wouldn’t know where in the draft order you would finish.  You wouldn’t know what kind of year the guy you are targeting now would have…whether his performance drops or he sustains a serious injury or develops any off field baggage.  But with the added uncertainty of the coronavirus factoring in, waiting until 2021 ccould make such a deferral a more dubious strategy.  How will the draft order be determined if the season is canceled?  Would they simply repeat this year’s draft order?  Would you be willing to expend the draft capital on players with one less season’s worth of tape and development?  Would they somehow create an order based on the average number of wins over the last 2-3 seasons?  How would the Jaguars fare in such a process?  A shortened season doesn’t add much to the certainty.  While a more jaundiced fan may think the Campbell, Bouye and Foles trades may have been calculated to reduce the win total short term over the course of a 17 game season, a shortened season –say 9 games-might not be enough  to achieve that result.  One upset win could knock this team out of range of Lawrence ore even Fields.  Alternatively, a shortened season may result in a tie where we miss out on the top pick like we did in 2013.  If it’s true the consensus of Lawrence being the best QB prospect in some time, the team with the top pick may be even less inclined than Cincinnati to trade that pick away.  That cost to acquire that pick, if it is even possible to acquire-would be more expensive for us next year than it may be to get a QB this year.  At least if we were to even trade up to get a QB this year, we’ve got two years of extra picks to use to get the QB.  Next year, we will have already spent the extra draft capital this year without having any extra picks in 2022 as an additional cushion.  Assume, arguendo, the league simply decided to keep the same draft order and Cincy remains at the top since no games have been played.   If they remained happy with Burrow and were willing to part with the top overall pick, suppose their price for moving up was 4 #1 overall picks.  Were you able to pay off that price in two years, functionally it become less expensive than it would to pay that same price over three  or four.  Think of it as spending your last $10 on something as opposed to buying the same item with your last $30.  The same item becomes more expensive because it takes a higher percentage of c your capital to acquire it.  Or perhaps more accurately, financing a loan over a shorter period of time

One more thing.  For years, my argument against following up the Leftwich pick with a pick of Roethlisberger was that NFL teams simply didn’t do things like that.  Given the uniqueness of the QB position, the need to put people around him, how expensive top ten picks were in terms of contracts, teams didn’t draft back to back first round picks on QB.  Until Arizona followed up the Josh Rosen pick with Kyler Murray last year, there had only been two teams since 1980 to spend back to back first round picks on QBs”  The 1982-83 Baltimore Colts, who spent a 1 on Art Schlichter in 1982, to spending the #1 overall the following year on John Elway.  The 1989 Cowboys spent the #1 overall pick on Troy Aikman, and thanks to the subsequent Supplemental draft later that same year, they spent a first round pick (which wound up being the #1 overall I 1990) on Steve Walsh.  There would be several differences between those situations and the Jaguars.  First, taking a QB in the first round this year would not be the same as taking back to back first round QBs.  Though Minshew played well as a rookie, he was taken in the 6th round.  Secondly, even in an extreme example of taking a first round QB this year and then taking Lawrence next year, the rookie wage scale preempts the salary cap crippling contracts that #1 overall picks used to command.  From a financial standpoint, having Minshew.  Herbert/Lawrence on the roster competing for the job becomes a far more palatable proposition now than it did then.  As evidenced from the Gabbert and Foles trades, Caldwell (assuming he is still here in 2021) has proven adept at getting trade value for QBs the team no longer wants.  But if that scenario seems farfetched, I submit it would be more desirable for this team to have that kind of surplus at QB as opposed to the opposite possibility-namely that Minshew is not the answer, but the team does not draft his replacement this year, and in 2021 the team is not in position or able to get into position to draft his replacement.

To a large degree, it is fortunate that Minshew  played well enough to cause the FO to place faith in him.  Sadly the Jaguars have missed so many times at the QB position these consideration are even an issue.  But we’ve prematurely put our eggs in a QB’s basket before and paid a heavy price. We should not possibly abandon the draft board simply  for the sake of bolstering Minshew.  Instead of adopting the policy , and for myriad reasons, there’s no guarantee the future makes it possible for us to take Lawrence next year.  Instead of lving by the axiom of “Good things come to those who wair.” Perhaps we should adopt a “There’s no time like the present” approach to QB.
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#2

Good read. There is also the spectre of having the guy you want the following year becoming unavailable- maybe he ruptures his achilles playing tennis or gets caught stealing crab legs at Publix. I kinda agree with putting those eggs into two baskets.
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#3

(03-23-2020, 04:19 PM)PF* Wrote: Good read. There is also the spectre of having the guy you want the following year becoming unavailable- maybe he ruptures his achilles playing tennis or gets caught stealing crab legs at Publix. I kinda agree with putting those eggs into two baskets.
Thanks.

Nicely played Winston reference there.
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#4

Agreed.

I think Minshew is a better Romo, and an incredible leader

I think by surrounding him with talent doesn’t mean “putting all the eggs in his basket” , it just means acquiring more offensive talent we’ve been lacking for 10+ years.

I wouldn’t mind drafting a QB 3-7 rounds, but let’s give Minshew this year to prove himself. If he doesn’t, draft competition or his replacement next year
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#5
(This post was last modified: 03-23-2020, 06:16 PM by PF*.)

(03-23-2020, 04:21 PM)Bullseye Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 04:19 PM)PF* Wrote:  Good read. There is also the spectre of having the guy you want the following year becoming unavailable- maybe he ruptures his achilles playing tennis or gets caught stealing crab legs at Publix. I kinda agree with putting those eggs into two baskets.
Thanks.

Nicely played Winston reference there.

The guy you go with, say Minshew in this case, is subject to anything happening to him as well and then where are you? Back to square one.

From a financial perspective, it is probably a luxury to have a guy like GM on a 6th rounders contract for the next 3 years as you could pair him with a 1st rounder making your total QB outlay manageable. Let the two of them compete for the next 3 years and go with the better guy. If they both excel, then turn one into draft capital and repeat the cycle.
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#6

(03-23-2020, 04:28 PM)MojoKing Wrote: Agreed.

I think Minshew is a better Romo, and an incredible leader

I think by surrounding him with talent doesn’t mean “putting all the eggs in his basket” , it just means acquiring more offensive talent we’ve been lacking for 10+ years.

I wouldn’t mind drafting a QB 3-7 rounds, but let’s give Minshew this year to prove himself. If he doesn’t, draft competition or his replacement next year


Agreed where?  With whom?

Of course, if the team does not think there is a franchise QB available to them in this draft for one reason or another, by no means should it force a QB pick early.

To be honest, this team could go any number of directions in this draft and do a good job, whether it involves taking a QB or not.  There is ample justification in an offensive heavy, defensive heavy, or mixed draft.

I just hope they get the picks right.
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#7

(03-23-2020, 04:32 PM)PF* Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 04:21 PM)Bullseye Wrote: Thanks.

Nicely played Winston reference there.

The guy you go with, say Minshew in this case, is subject to anything happening to him as well and then where are you? Back to square one.

From a financial perspective, it is probably a luxury to have a guy like GM on a 6th rounders contract for the next 3 years as you could pair him with a 1st rounder making your total QB outlay manageable. Let the two of them compete for the next 3 years and got with the better guy. If they both excel, then turn one into draft capital and repeat the cycle.
(emphasis added)

We are incomplete agreement.

But your last point raises a sub point here about the way positively or negatively, drafts tend to reverberate on or for a franchise.

When a team gets a pick (especially an early pick) wrong, teams will often spend pick after pick trying to correct that error-often unsuccessfully.  The Soward pick turned into picks spent on Reggie Williams, matt Jones, and ultimately Justin Blackmon.  

When a team gets a pick right, it pays off handsomely in so many different ways.  Getting 4th round pick Rob Johnson right in 1995 turned into Fred Taylor and Tavian Banks in 1998.  Getting the Jalen Ramsey pick right gave us best ever CB play for this team while he was here, and two extra first round picks and a 4th round pick.

If we doubled (or tripled) up at QB and good good to great quality with all three picks, we'd have draft flexibility for years.  Even if we got only one stud QB of the three, our franchise would be so much better for it.
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#8

I disagree with Bullseye. I don't think you can get a new QB two years in a row. One of those guys has to start. The other won't get any practice reps at all during the regular season.

I think right now we have a prospect, which is Minshew, and we have to go with him this season to find out what we have. Drafting another one with a high pick, splitting the time between the two, that won't work.

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#9

(03-23-2020, 04:58 PM)The Real Marty Wrote: I disagree with Bullseye.  I don't think you can get a new QB two years in a row.   One of those guys has to start.  The other won't get any practice reps at all during the regular season.  

I think right now we have a prospect, which is Minshew, and we have to go with him this season to find out what we have.   Drafting another one with a high pick, splitting the time between the two, that won't work.

While you have a good point, I am unsure if it would be a long term (or even a medium term) concern.

Quarterback is such an in demand position, and Minshew has enough good tape, to where he could likely command something in trade if he were to be beaten out by a first round QB taken this year or in 20121.

If Minshew emds up starting over the first rounder taken this year or next, it enables the first rounder to develop more slowly.  Depending on the player selected, there will be enough demand for QBs to still trade him away if the team so desired.  If the player selected is truly a better prospect and proves it over time, if not immediately, Minshew should have enough on tape to merit trade consideration.
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#10

(03-23-2020, 04:28 PM)MojoKing Wrote: Agreed.

I think Minshew is a better Romo, and an incredible leader

Romo is a should be hall of famer...
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#11

(03-23-2020, 04:46 PM)Bullseye Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 04:32 PM)PF* Wrote: The guy you go with, say Minshew in this case, is subject to anything happening to him as well and then where are you? Back to square one.

From a financial perspective, it is probably a luxury to have a guy like GM on a 6th rounders contract for the next 3 years as you could pair him with a 1st rounder making your total QB outlay manageable. Let the two of them compete for the next 3 years and got with the better guy. If they both excel, then turn one into draft capital and repeat the cycle.
(emphasis added)

We are incomplete agreement.

But your last point raises a sub point here about the way positively or negatively, drafts tend to reverberate on or for a franchise.

When a team gets a pick (especially an early pick) wrong, teams will often spend pick after pick trying to correct that error-often unsuccessfully.  The Soward pick turned into picks spent on Reggie Williams, matt Jones, and ultimately Justin Blackmon.  

When a team gets a pick right, it pays off handsomely in so many different ways.  Getting 4th round pick Rob Johnson right in 1995 turned into Fred Taylor and Tavian Banks in 1998.  Getting the Jalen Ramsey pick right gave us best ever CB play for this team while he was here, and two extra first round picks and a 4th round pick.

If we doubled (or tripled)  up at QB and good good to great quality with all three picks, we'd have draft flexibility for years.  Even if we got only one stud QB of the three, our franchise would be so much better for it.

To wit: NE when they had Jimmy G riding the pine. 

However, does a first round pick used on another QB deny Minshew the top talent he needs to succeed? Given our draft capital, that could be construed as a rhetorical question. But what if a prize offensive player falls in our lap, do we still go with the depth at QB route? A little BPA vs. Need scenario, perhaps.
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#12
(This post was last modified: 03-23-2020, 05:55 PM by Bullseye.)

(03-23-2020, 05:45 PM)homebiscuit Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 04:46 PM)Bullseye Wrote: (emphasis added)

We are incomplete agreement.

But your last point raises a sub point here about the way positively or negatively, drafts tend to reverberate on or for a franchise.

When a team gets a pick (especially an early pick) wrong, teams will often spend pick after pick trying to correct that error-often unsuccessfully.  The Soward pick turned into picks spent on Reggie Williams, matt Jones, and ultimately Justin Blackmon.  

When a team gets a pick right, it pays off handsomely in so many different ways.  Getting 4th round pick Rob Johnson right in 1995 turned into Fred Taylor and Tavian Banks in 1998.  Getting the Jalen Ramsey pick right gave us best ever CB play for this team while he was here, and two extra first round picks and a 4th round pick.

If we doubled (or tripled)  up at QB and good good to great quality with all three picks, we'd have draft flexibility for years.  Even if we got only one stud QB of the three, our franchise would be so much better for it.

To wit: NE when they had Jimmy G riding the pine. 

However, does a first round pick used on another QB deny Minshew the top talent he needs to succeed? Given our draft capital, that could be construed as a rhetorical question. But what if a prize offensive player falls in our lap, do we still go with the depth at QB route? A little BPA vs. Need scenario, perhaps.

An excellent example with Garoppolo and New England, and an excellentline of inquiry.

I submit that given our draft capital and the depth of the WR class in this draft, spending a first round pick on a QB does not, in itself, preclude giving Minshew (or the other QB) weapons to thrive.

For instance, if we took a QB at 9, we could still take a LT at 20 (Josh Jones), another WR at 43 (Aiyuk, Hamler, Higgins), a TE in the 3rd, and some interior OL either later in the 3rd via trade up or use the 4th round or keep all of the 4ths and 5ths to load up on IOL.
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#13

(03-23-2020, 05:37 PM)Upper Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 04:28 PM)MojoKing Wrote: Agreed.

I think Minshew is a better Romo, and an incredible leader

Romo is a should be hall of famer...

You have to be kidding me.  He was one of the worst clutch quarterbacks in recent memory.
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#14

(03-23-2020, 05:56 PM)Rico Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 05:37 PM)Upper Wrote: Romo is a should be hall of famer...

You have to be kidding me.  He was one of the worst clutch quarterbacks in recent memory.

FWIW here is his playoff record ans states:

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/p...elog/post/

I don't think he was a BAD QB, but not in the HOF category.

If we are talking exclusively about Dallas QBs, he is somewhere on the spectrum between Danny White and Staubach/Aikman.
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#15

(03-23-2020, 05:56 PM)Rico Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 05:37 PM)Upper Wrote: Romo is a should be hall of famer...

You have to be kidding me.  He was one of the worst clutch quarterbacks in recent memory.
He’s better than Namath....

The HOF is a joke for just about every single sport.
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#16
(This post was last modified: 03-23-2020, 06:16 PM by Rico.)

(03-23-2020, 06:04 PM)Cleatwood Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 05:56 PM)Rico Wrote: You have to be kidding me.  He was one of the worst clutch quarterbacks in recent memory.
He’s better than Namath....

The HOF is a joke for just about every single sport.

Whether right or wrong, Namath got 'bonus points' for his victory in their Super Bowl.  It's always been considered one of the big events that lead to the merger.

(03-23-2020, 06:03 PM)Bullseye Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 05:56 PM)Rico Wrote: You have to be kidding me.  He was one of the worst clutch quarterbacks in recent memory.

FWIW here is his playoff record ans states:

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/p...elog/post/

I don't think he was a BAD QB, but not in the HOF category.

If we are talking exclusively about Dallas QBs, he is somewhere on the spectrum between Danny White and Staubach/Aikman.

Absolutely agree.  Good QB, not HOF worthy.

Always go to that site for reference.  They're good for all pro sports.
When inventing a foolproof system inventors often underestimate the ingenuity of fools.

A flute with no holes is not a flute.  A donut with no hole is a danish.
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#17

Romo ranks top 10 in virtually every era adjusted, rate adjusted, and overall stat there is. He was a monster. If he isn't a hall of famer then basically no player who didn't win a super bowl can ever be in. Sorry Tony, Fred, and Jimmy.
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#18

(03-23-2020, 06:14 PM)Rico Wrote:
(03-23-2020, 06:04 PM)Cleatwood Wrote: He’s better than Namath....

The HOF is a joke for just about every single sport.

Whether right or wrong, Namath got 'bonus points' for his victory in their Super Bowl.  It's always been considered one of the big events that lead to the merger.

(03-23-2020, 06:03 PM)Bullseye Wrote: FWIW here is his playoff record ans states:

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/p...elog/post/

I don't think he was a BAD QB, but not in the HOF category.

If we are talking exclusively about Dallas QBs, he is somewhere on the spectrum between Danny White and Staubach/Aikman.

Absolutely agree.  Good QB, not HOF worthy.

Always go to that site for reference.  They're good for all pro sports.

He also got points for kissing Suzy Kolber.
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#19

(03-23-2020, 06:17 PM)Upper Wrote: Romo ranks top 10 in virtually every era adjusted, rate adjusted, and overall stat there is. He was a monster. If he isn't a hall of famer then basically no player who didn't win a super bowl can ever be in. Sorry Tony, Fred, and Jimmy.

I'll say this much...and I am in no way impugning Romo as a player, but he is currently on a pace to be in the HOF as a color analyst.  He is absolutely GREAT in that capacity.

He speaks clearly but plainly, with the enthusasism and mannerisms of a guy you could sit and have a beer with.  His love of the game is overwhelmingly evident, as is his knowledge.  As a viewer, that's pretty much all you could ask for in a color analyst.

Back to the topic at hand, if Minshew is indeed Romo quality, we are in good shape at the position and would be well advised to bolster the surrounding cast around him.

But at this stage, since the sample size isn't big enough, we don't know that he is Romo caliber or better, thus we should not hesitate to take a QB early, either this year or next, if we feel there is a true franchise QB available and that QB is on the board.
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#20

Yes, if Minshew is Romo but a better leader then he is going to make London very happy.
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