Hi, my name is Jim and I am a football addict. O.k., that’s out of the way.
I admit I have watched a lot of football over the years since I stopped playing the game – either live or on the tube.
For the life of me though I can’t recall a year when so many young quarterbacks have come on the scene in the pro ranks and made such an impact.
Many experts will use the 1983 NFL draft as the measuring stick because three of the QB’s drafted that year wound up to be hall of famers.
John Elway, Jim Kelly and Dan Marino were the golden boys in a class which included such stalwarts like Jim Bob Taylor drafted by Baltimore in the 11th round and Clete Caspar taken by the LA Rams in the 12th round.
But this past season we have seen Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson absolutely explode onto the scene and have an immediate impact.
These three rookies made playoff teams out of teams which were a disaster basically the year before.
The Colts were 2-14, the Redskins were 5-11 and the Seahawks ended up 7-9.
In their rookie years Marino went 7-2 as a starter and his Dolphins made the playoffs, Elway was 4-6 but his Broncos were also in the post season while Kelly went to the USFL Houston Gamblers first and got onto the Bills roster in 1986 where he went 4-12 as a starter.
These three rookies have turned the NFL on its collective ear with their overall talent and all three should be considered for the rookie of the year honours (my vote would be for Wilson).
They have shown some grit and calmness well beyond their years in a position which generally can shake a player’s confidence quite easily.
You can also add to the mix some other QB’s who have done well in their first year as a starter in the form of Brandon Weeden, Ryan Tannehill – both rookies – and Colin Kaepernick who has held a clipboard for the Niners the past year and a half before getting his chance to start .
For me, this has to be the best year for the QB in the league. Now whether any of these put together careers worthy of hall of fame status remains to be seen but there is no doubt these kids can play.