Each year there is the draft, then months of analysis coupled with guessing and a culmination of the regular season proving ground. With the regular season right around the corner, some members of the crack Sports Unbiased staff got together to look at the 2014 NFL rookie quarterback class. The following writers participated in this piece-Jared Cortes, Jason Culley and Chris Markham.
Each writer, through hours and days of evaluation, came up with their top two. Those results are captured below and a consensus has been determined. The top pick on each of their lists received two points and their second selection received one point. Lets jump in and see who will be the best rookie quarterback in for the 2014/2015 NFL season.
Who will be the best rookie QB in 2014?
Jason Culley – Number 1 – Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings
At one point leading up to the NFL draft, Bridgewater was a strong consideration to be the number one pick. An average pro day, with a lot of inaccurate and just plain bad passes caused his stock to drop considerably. Matt Cassel was signed in the off-season, but that didn’t stop the Vikings from trading up and drafting Bridgewater with the last pick of the first round. When the first week of the NFL regular season begins I fully expect Bridgewater to be under center.
Jason Culley – Number 2 – Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jacksonville Jaguars selected Bortles with the third pick of the NFL draft. According to team officials, their plan for him in his rookie season is to have him learn from the bench. After two impressive showings in the pre-season those team officials could be reconsidering their plan. Although I expect Chad Henne to begin the regular season as the starting quarterback, I could see Bortles getting substantial playing time by mid-season.
Chris Markham – Number 1 – Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings
The Louisville product is in the middle of an intense quarterback battle in Minnesota against proven backup Matt Cassel. The two both played exceptionally well in their last preseason game and the decision has yet to be made by head coach Mike Zimmer. Bridgewater has tremendous playmaking ability and a high football I.Q. along with explosive offensive weapons in Adrian Peterson and Cordarrelle Patterson. Assuming Bridgewater can win the QB competition, he should have the most productive season of all rookie quarterbacks.
Chris Markham – Number 2 – Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars
Another high draft pick in a quarterback competition. Bortles was the first QB picked in the 2014 draft for good reason. He has a cannon for an arm, great fundamentals and pin-point accuracy. He knows how to make plays with his feet when he has to and has great pocket presence. But he is number two on my list for two reasons. First: the Jaguars have no offensive firepower to back-up his talent. Second: the coaching staff his highly debating on benching Bortles all year to have him learn behind Chad Henne.
Jared Cortes- Number 1- Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars
After one preseason game, I already see Blake Bortles taking over Chad Henne’s job in Jacksonville with ease. The rookie impressed, completing 7-11 passes for 117 yards, even with his receivers dropping several balls. Bortles potential is too high and Henne’s ceiling is too low for Blake to not have the starting job within a few weeks, so Bortles is my pick to be the top Rookie QB
Jared Cortes – Number 2 – Johnny Manziel, Cleveland Browns
As hard as it is to admit it, Brian Hoyer will not be holding down the starting job in Cleveland. It’s Manziel Mania time by the lake, and we got our first taste of it in Detroit last week. Manziel showed impressive scampering ability and poise in the pocket. There’s still many kinks to work out, but with time Manziel will become increasingly better and more attuned to the offensive system new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan has in place.
Writer Consensus: Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings
The consensus finished in a tie with Teddy Bridgewater and Blake Bortles each receiving four points. However, since Bridgewater has two first place votes he wins the tiebreaker. It will be interesting to watch the quarterback competitions complete and to witness, throughout the regular season, each quarterbacks maturation process. We will be back at the end of the year to see who was correct. Did you agree or disagree with the analysis. Please vote and leave your comments below.