Zac Boyer will be entering his third season covering the Washington Redskins for The Free Lance-Star this fall. Make sure to follow Zac on Twitter (@ZacBoyer) for the latest updates or e-mail him with any questions at email@example.com.
If Gabbert and Newton are gone, then who?
It’s common for a quarterback’s stock to ascend during the pre-draft process as coaches, scouts and analysts see first-hand the physical tools that made him a Division I star and get to know him on a personal level.
It’s not surprising, then, that Missouri’s Blaine Gabbert and Auburn’s Cam Newton are rising. And according to the (Insider-protected) mock draft that ESPN analyst Mel Kiper released today, Gabbert and Newton will be off the board by the time the Redskins pick at No. 10. [FYI, he has Gabbert to Carolina at No. 1 and Newton to Cincinnati at No. 4.]
That would please those of you who believe that the Redskins must address their defensive needs and those who are not sold on either Gabbert or Newton. And to be sure, almost everyone you talk to about this class of quarterbacks believes there isn’t a sure thing in the bunch.
But if the Redskins don’t have the chance to draft Gabbert or Newton, or simply decide not to, they still are left with a hole at quarterback. We know that Donovan McNabb’s time in town is likely up, and Rex Grossman remains an option even though he is not under contract.
Well, Kiper sees a quality option for the Redskins in Texas Christian’s Andy Dalton. He believes that Dalton fits what the Redskins do on offense and that coach Mike Shanahan “would gravitate to” him. The Redskins could get Dalton with their second-round pick, No. 41 overall, Kiper said.
“He didn’t throw many picks,” Kiper said on a teleconference Wednesday. “He wasn’t sacked much at TCU. He was outstanding against the ranked teams, up around 70 percent [completion rate]. He was solid on third down. He gives you that mobility. That’s a key thing in their offense. You’ve got to be able to throw on the move and throw with anticipation and not make the bad decision—and he doesn’t.”
In the next breath, Kiper acknowledged the knocks on Dalton.
“He doesn’t have the great arm. He doesn’t have the great height. He’s not 6-4, 6-5, and he doesn’t have the arm strength of [Arkansas' Ryan] Mallett, [Washington's Jake] Locker, Gabbert or Newton. But he’s certainly more than adequate.”
Dalton measured 6-2, 215 at the combine.
“I’m a smart QB, I work really hard, I’m a perfectionist,” Dalton said at the scouting combine last month. “I can make all the throws and I think I’ve shown over my time. I think the thing I need to work on the most is being under center a little more. We ran a lot of shotgun. We ran some stuff under center, but it has made it a pretty quick transition. I think I can just get better and better at that.”
And on a person note, Dalton has my support because of his red hair. Looks like face-of-the-franchise hair if you ask me!
What’s your take on Dalton? How would you feel if the Redskins drafted him, keeping in mind that he almost certainly would not start right away?