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A look at the QBs through one man's eyes

One of the faithful readers on here yesterday complained that I have a man-crush on Cam Newton and haven't even really mentioned another quarterback the Dolphins could draft on this blog.

That's not correct. I've mentioned other quarterbacks. But admittedly none in the glowing terms I've mentioned Newton. So let me get about the business of explaining the man-crush. And then let me mention why that does not extend to other QBs in the coming draft.

Understand that all of this is my opinion. Please feel free to disagree. But, honestly, do your homework first.

My opinion starts with the idea that Cam Newton is the best quarterback in this draft. It is not Blaine Gabbert. It is not Ryan Mallet. It is not Jake Locker or any of the other names you'll hear thrown around. That doesn't mean Newton will have the most successful NFL career because there are many factors that go into that.

One of the primary factors that go into that mix that cannot be judged by me or you or even the experts out there that include 32 NFL general managers is the attribute that separates a star from an also-ran.

Some players, regardless of their measurable skills, have an attribute that you cannot see that allows him, indeed, propels him to success. Tom Brady has that attribute. Phillip Rivers has that attribute. It is that intangible something that draft gurus don't like to acknowlege because it doesn't come with stats and cannot be pointed out on film. Joe Montana had it and that helped him overcome the fact he wasn't exceedingly big or boasting the strongest of arms.

Jim Everett? Mark Herrmann? Ryan Leaf? Trent Edwards? David Carr?

All of them supremely talented and successful in college. None of them had that attribute. Fact is they seemed to be anchored by an attribute that prohibited them from going forward -- the anti-attribute, if you will.

Cam Newton has the attribute. I don't think Ryan Mallet does.

Beyond that, Newton will be selected in the Top 5 picks (should be No. 1, if you ask me) because, well, what's not to freakin' like? He's a winner. He won in junior college. He won a national championship his one year starting at Auburn.

That attribute? Did you see the game against Alabama? Nick Saban knows a thing or two about defense. Saban had great talent on his defense. And in the most pressure-packed situation of the season against the best defense he faced all year, a defense that represents the biggest rival on the Auburn schedule, a defense that had a lead, Cam Newton put his team on his back and rallied Auburn to beat Alabama.

And the Tigers won every other game on their schedule. The Tigers, I shouldn't have to tell you, play in the Southeastern Conference. And the Southeastern Conference is arguably the best conference in college football.

There are many criticisms of Newton lately. But he led his team while under extreme scrutiny nationally -- both positive as a Heisman hopeful and negative as a possible violator of NCAA rules. Ultimately, Newton won the Heisman and was not proven to have broken rules -- at least not yet.

He's not a genius but he's bright. He's got the physique at 6-5 and 245 pounds to play quarterback as well as Superman. He can make every throw. He's accurate enough that it is not a question mark. His parents have been married 24 years and they are important in his life. He has Warren Moon, a Hall of Famer, advising him. He can move very well so he has ability to escape the rush.

Can someone tell me the negatives?

Oh, he played in a basic single-wing-type attack? True. He didn't throw over 25 times in games? True. He didn't play in the pro-style set? True. He liked to save plays by running? True.

I didn't say he is perfect and spotless. I said he's simply the best player at his position and probably the best in the draft. He will not be there when the Dolphins draft. Fourteen NFL GMs are not that obtuse. But he is my top QB.

My No. 2 quarterback? Christian Ponder of Florida State.

He's athletic. He's bright. He has ENORMOUS hands, which is a great attribute in that he will be able to play in bad weather such as rain or cold because the ball won't be slipping out of his hands. He doesn't have the strongest arm in the draft. He's probably tailor made for a West Coast offense. But that attribute I spoke of? I see it in Ponder.

Blaine Gabbert? He could be good. He's bright. He understands the fundamentals of how to manipulate safeties. He's been coached in a very quarterback friendly system that made Chase Daniel, an ordinary QB talent, into a stud in college.

I am told Gabbert had very little success throwing downfield. Teams are looking at statistics about his completion percentage on passes of 5 yards or less compared to those of 5 yards or more. Obviously the shorter pass gave Gabbert a better percentage. It's that way for all QBs. But Gabbert's completion percentage on passes over 5 yards dropped so dramatically -- moreso than most other QBs -- that it is making scouts question his ability to succeed on intermediate throws.

Gabbert completed only 61 of his 301 completions for more than 15 yards. Compare that with say, Landry Jones of Oklahoma, who completed 101 of his 405 completions for more than 15 yards and you start to see Gabbert didn't stretch the field nearly often enough. Gabbert was eighth in yards per attempt in his conference.

Does he look the part? At 6-5 and 235 pounds, he absolutely does. Did he show that attribute I talk about earlier very often? Check the game against Iowa and get back to me.

Ryan Mallet? If you read the previous post you already know what I told you a very respected NFL man told me about Mallet's leadership skills -- or lack thereof.

Here's another concern: Can this kid get out of anyone's way?

NFL defenses today are fast, they're aggressive, they attack the quarterback and they generally arrive at the quarterback in a foul mood. How is Mallet, who is slower and less mobile than just about any quarterback in the NFL today, going to get out of the way?

I know of at least two teams that have this concern.

Colin Kaepernick? I like him. He can run like the dickens. He's athletic. He's kind of scrawny looking to me. And he's a project. He's not going to solve Miami's quarterback issues for 2011. Maybe in 2013. But not 2011.

Jake Locker? He should have come out in 2009. He would have made a ton of money. I don't like his accuracy. He reminds me of Brady Quinn in that regard. He looks the part, but so did Quinn. How'd that work out? We've learned stuff since then. (I hope).

My favorite darkhorses?

T.J. Yates of North Carolina late (6-7th) rounds of the draft and Ricky Stanzi of Iowa in the middle (3-4) rounds of the draft. Both started at least three years in college. Both won in college. Both completed around 60 percent of their passes in college. Both were coached by NFL caliber coaches. Works for me.

Are they going to be starters? Look, even half the guys picked in the first round are going to be busts. So to suggest to you that I know Yates or Stanzi will be eventual starters is simply ridiculous. I'm not in the mood for ridiculous today.


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....Vince Young has had the priveledge of playing in a run first offense. He has had the good fortune to be just a game manager. He has faired well. But put him in a situation where we passed as much as this offense did last year. and would he be anymore effective then Henne?

Sure he brings some different skills to the table. But having that security blanket running the ball 30 times a game should not be underated. Young did put his team on his shoulders as a rookie. But defenses are smart, and it is easy to defend a one dimensional qurterback after some study.

Now, if the Dolphins are truley commited to getting back to a run first type of offense
Why not let Henne run the show? Is Young that much more of an upgrade? I don't think so. Especially if we find ourselves in the same jam as last year. Not being able to run it. Why go out and spend on a player that realy doesn't improve the team?

mikel leshoure still my pick late in the first

"Cam Newton has the attribute."

Nooooo, in your OPINION he has that attribute! In mine he does not and never will. He will be Vince Young 2.0




shmo @ 3:07

that is some serious hallucinating. how do you figure we get two #1's next year?

...This was a scenario I offered the other day. It isn't to far fetched. What do you guys think? It is a 3 team trade, and goes as such. New England can have just about any player the want because of the leverage they have with all of their draft picks. They trade their 28th pick to Arizona for The Cards #5. Arizona gets New Englands first pick of the second round # 33. Then The Cardinals trade the # 28 to the Phins for our 15. We get their second pick(their original) of the second round #38. So in essance, The Cards are really trading their 5th for our 15th. They get the first pick in round 2, and we fall to 28, and get the 5th pick in round 2(38)

The Pats select Von Miller, or AJ Green. The Cards at 15 can take either Mallet, or OLB Akeem Ayers. We could still take a stab at Pouncey, or a running back at 28. How does this sound? A pipe dream, or a realistic scenario?

cam will not be there so lets just drop that thought

mallet vs henne
gabbert vs henne(probly wont be there)

locker vs henne

all sound like something fun to look fwd to
id be excited about that competition

but all other qb's probably wouldnt be able to take hennes starting position realistically

Who's truth, Joe? You're truth? You're not speaking the truth, you're stating your opinion.....big difference!!

Thanks for the lesson....but not sure I asked for one.

as a fan if we drafted anyone else i wouldnt be crazt about next season

as fans we want someone who can compete and have a good shot of taking hennes job

speaking soley through the draft not free agency



DD I agree with you about Henne as you probably already know.

Your draft scenario made my head hurt :). I think the Pats would not realisticly do a 3 way deal where they know we come out happier than where we started.


I really like your trade scenario. That would be awesome!! Well thought out and I suppose it has it's merits. It's not a typical Bellichik move to trade up but I suppose if Miller or Green were guys they wanted I suppose it could happen. Yeah it makes a lot of sense....which means it likely will never happen....LOL.

I think if Gabbert is still there for the Cards they will pick him. I expect Miller and Green will still be there at 5. So now it depends on whether the Cards value Mallett and whether the Pats want Green or Miller. Never say never....

Just wondering...whether its Ingram or Newton or Mallet, or a handful of other players, others here bring up all the reasons why they may not work out. When speaking of Pouncey, nobody here ever questions his ability. Why not? Is it fair to just assume this guy will be a top 5 guard in the NFL? Because if not, then he isn't worth our first round pick. Some mocks now have him going mid twenties, so no guarantee a trade down to 28 will land him anyway.

When trading down 10 or more spots, you better have more than one player you are targeting, otherwise you may not get the value that you expected for that trade down. I say keep the 15, keep destiny in our own hands rather than roll the dice for a late round guard that may not even be there.

DD its possibel anything is possible especially this year where i think teams will make more drastic moves

poizen its only 1 move for the oats and 2 moves for the cards


Good post at 3:33pm. Everything I've read about Pouncey says he won't be as good as his brother. No with that being said, I still think he would upgrade our line. The question is, does he improve the line enough to justify the pick or are we better off spending it somewhere else. I, like you, don't think the line is quite as bad as everyone makes it out to be.

I am sure it was not difficult, but after reading the third number my ADD kicks in I start to twich and think of nearly naked hot chicks and a meximelt...

I know this posted earlier today but Pennington tore his ACL playing pickup basketball. That's got it to be it for this guy. He's becoming like the Terminator.....just won't die!!

pouncey is not his brother and id take a guard or a tackle over him costanzo solder even carimi

John Doe, an example of a non-hallucinated trade would be:

Miami trades:
#15 in the 1st
4th rounder in 2011
3rd Rounder in 2012

In exchange Miami receives:
A late 1st round pick in 2011
2nd round pick in 2011
#1 in 2012.

Is that REALLY improbable? At this point in Miami's rebuild, Quality is better than quantity. We don't need more bodies like 3 years ago.

The only way to get quality is to acquire them early in the draft. I have NO problems at ALL with doing a big trade back & trading some mid-late round picks this year & next in an attempt to get another #1.

Having high picks means having value.


I am well aware that this fan base will perpetually be disappointed with the QB position. I suppose it is the lingering Marino hangover.

I have been a consistent supporter of Henne getting another opportunity actually so I know very well how disparaging this fan base can be.

And I know they would hate on VY too. I just see VY as a young guy with a lot of up side and a player who could mature and be a long term answer at QB.

Mobility is ever more important yet you still have to have good coaching and I dont see that on the offensive side of the ball for the Dolphins.

IMO in a parody league you have to take some chances here and there.

Wow, that sucks for Penny... although there is not shot he played again anyway. Someone landed on his toe last year and he dislocated his shoulder...

Maybe he will stick around as an assistant?

what does anyone think about leshoure late in the first?? im surprised no1 has brought him up???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????


With all due respect, you're not going to get another teams first this year, second this year and first next year in the trade scenario you are talking. Matt Millen isn't a GM in the league any more. Go back and look at your trade scenario again and tell me a single team that would make that trade. It doesn't add up bud.

I thought we wouldn't be getting a first this year in the scenario you were talking about but I just don't see it happening. Why don't you get input from others, so that you don't think him I'm just picking on you.

Penny was a non option anyways. I did an acl. The surgery is very good now and a guy can make a full recovery especially since Penny has all the time and resources he could ever need.

Go to the 1st couple pages of this post. Lashoure was brought up a few times. 3 of us would like us to trade down and pick him with re-couping our 2nd pick.

Craig, why would I ask others? I really don't care. LOL I'm not very sensitive with those who disagree. As for your borderline condescending post:

A. If a team really wants a player bad enough, they HAVE & would trade.

B How can you suggest it isn't realistic when last year Miami traded from 12 to 28, swapped in the 4th & gave up a 6th & in return got a 1, a 2 AND Dobbins?

Considering we'd trade more picks & higher rounds to boot in that scenario, I think it's ridiculous that you would think a team wouldn't pull the trigger.

C. Considering at the moment, players cannot be traded, the likely hood IS that more picks will be involved in draft day trades. How is it that NE winds up with 2 1st rounders the last 2 years? They are drafting farther back than we are most years & they are capable & we aren't?

Sorry, facts are not on your side in this disagreement.


Don't get your shorts in a knot. That's why I asked you to pose it others on the blog, so that you wouldn't think it was me disagreeing with you for the sake of disagreeing with you.

So what do you think guys? If you were the GM of another team would you make Joe's trade?

as i already said, that trade scenario is total kool aid, hallucination. no way. not even worth a debate. i thought maybe he mistated himself.

I don't know what about my previous post was half condescending, Joe. See this is what you do. You post something and someone disagrees with it and you get defensive. I'm saying what you proposed doesn't seem reasonable. Then you start in on the 'facts aren't on your side in this disagreement'. What FACTS? You stated an opinion and I'm doing the same....show me the FACTS.....

Pennington tore his ACL today playing pick up basketball

nominate pennington for madden cover.. poor dude lol

Craig, nothing on me is in a knot. Don't fret.

Also, I already told you I don't really care what anyone else really thinks about it. Why are you recruiting others to comment? LOL You responded to my post so you comment. Back things up, don't just give opinions.

I just listed the A,B & C reasoning to which you didn't respond 1 bit.

If no one in the league would make that trade, as you suggest, how does NE do it 2 years in a row? And not just with #1's this year & last, but 2's & 3's this year as well. The fact that they have done it, in back to back years, totally debunks your assumption that no team would. proof is always in the pudding.

I am using RECENT HISTORY to show you teams DO make those types of trades.

If SD gave up a #1, #2 & a player for a 1, 6 & 4th swap last year, you REALLY don't think they would if it was for a 4th & a 3rd & they wouldn't have to give up a player?

Craig, I said borderline. If you are going to quote me, quote correctly.

John Doe, if that trade is a hallucination, how does NE wind up with multiple #1 picks 2 years in a row?

I think I'll be waiting for awhile for a coherent response. LOL

"What FACTS? You stated an opinion and I'm doing the same....show me the FACTS....."

Craig LMAO Again we are back to your lack of reading comprehension. You SAID no one would make that trade.

The FACT is, NE has done it, TWO YEARS in a ROW. That's a FACT. Holy mother of GOD! lmao


i think that was all me lol

what do you think of Andy Dalton?

Well, then I agree with you, that is my ideal draft, trade down get Lashoure and a 2nd pick back.

'Half-condescending', 'borderline condescending', what's the difference Joe?

Why don't you stick to what we're talking about? We're talking about the trade scenario you posted. It has nothing to do with what New England has done in the past. Show where they've pulled off a trade like you're discussing? How is what we did last year anything close to what you are suggesting?

Seriously man, sometimes I think yu're just dellusional. You come up with this stuff, people diisagree with you and then you take it all personally. You're welcome to your opinion on this Joe but you're trade scenario isn't going to happen. jon doe has it right....total 'hallucination'.

I'm out Joe.....you're not worth fighting with....find another combatant.

The team that drafts Newton better hope for a rookie salary cap because if there is not one his father will be coming around with the entire Newton family with their hands out wanting to get paid. That kid has a mess of a life and that will only add to his bust status once he is in the NFL.

i guess we'll find out in 29 days ..hopeful

well i spent yesterday saying good bye to penny coz henne needs a clean shot at finding his "it", i would like express my sympathy to penny and hope he makes a full recovery but is not anywhere near the fins locker room nxt year

so this is good for the team

thanks for 2008

ps it wasn't me who did his knee

Craig, I'm sitting here with a smile on my face laughing at how bad you are at comprehending what you're reading. You're way tooooo sensitive. LOL

BTW, half condescending means half of what you say is condescending. Borderline condescending, which I said, means what you say borders on condescending.

Seriously man LOL Is that clear now? Holy bejesus!

FYI, since you wanted to stick to what we are talking about, which I have & you just don't comprehend...I WAS TALKING ABOUT ACQUIRING another 1st next year.

The trade I gave was AN EXAMPLE. I then used NE as an example. The POINT IS, if NE can acquire multiple #1's in back to back years, so can Miami.

NE is the proof that teams DO make those trades. What don't you get? That's how it relates.

I am far from being delusional or confrontational or whatever your imagination is saying to you. I am clearly stupid for trying to explain anything to you. To make it worse, I'm a repeat offender LOL

I would not draft newton History has shown most Black Qbs don't work out there have been a few good ones and one great one Warren Moon,I am not sure what it is but from where I am from we all thought up here Mcnabb could win a Super Bowl,but he clearly had some problems from the neck up despite having alot of talent, and the there is VY and Mike Vick same kind of thing, but if the dolphins did draft him and he got us a Super bowl I would be happy of course.I think the dolphins need a veteran QB this year drafting any QB this year and expexcting him to take us to the playoffs is not realistic, if we would have had just a decent QB last year we would have made the playoffs get a good vet and we should make it this year that is of course if there is football this year.

scott, pretty racist comment and pretty dumb too. there have been so few black qb's in the league to make such a judgement. didn't Doug Williams win a SB and MVP? what percentage of white QB's win a SB? maybe 1 out of 50, thats only 2%. statistically speaking therefore the percentage of black qb's to win SB's is astronomical at maybe 10%. congrats on the dumbest post of the year award.

right on the money with newton. ponder is going to be a bust. to injury prone already. mallett would be fine. and any of the fa qb's. young, mcnabb, or palmer. henne has to GO!

@scott from delaware

History has also shown that most white QBs don't work either. Hell, we've seen quite a few of them coming through the Dolphins' door in recent years!

Nickzi....well put


Last year the offensive line is what stunk.

Fix THAT and whoever is QB will have more time to find the open man and the running game will also improve.

This means getting the best offensive lineman in the first round. I'd like to see the new Webb/Sims combo, Long/??, playing for the next five to ten years.

This wouldn't be a glamourous pick but it will probably be an all-pro pick.

Henne, Young, McNabb, Palmer or any other QB would do better behind a revamped o-line.

It's a shame that Sparano's o-line specialty was the worse unit last year.

Joe Schmoe,

As an independent observer to your convo I also believe your trade example is flat out not possible. Your example of NE doesn't give specifics either. You say they acquired such and such but do not give the parameters of the trade.

If you look back you will find they have built up this draft pick equity over years by trading picks for the future. They also garnered a 1st by trading a probowl player in his prime. If we traded a guy like Long we could also pick up an extra 1st.

Nowhere will you find an equivalent value trade by NE to the example you gave. Not even close.

A 1st, 3rd and 4th for two 1sts and a 2nd?! No way, bro!!

Granted, NE has garnered draft picks by picking up value in future drafts. That is totally possible, but not in the quantities you suggest.

Ponder is injury prone and has no arm. He will only do anything in a west coast offense. Greg McElroy is absolutely incredible. I like him, Kaepernick, Mallett, Stanzi, and Tyrod Taylor.

Anonomys, Tyrod Talor is Pat White 2.0 version... IMOH..


Great article; well written (for a spots writer..LOL)

Didnt realize that Gabbert had such a low completion percentage over 5 Yards. Is Newton's much better ?

Thanks Swamy,

I could not agree more. 1st round O-line is the way to go IMO.

RB's can be found later in the draft or FA. A stud linemen for the long run would be ideal.

Some posters on here think the O-line was good last year. I didnt see that at all.

...Thanks for the earlier feedback about the trade scenario I put forth. Now this is just a model of how I think our best chance is to get into the second round. I think it is going to involve a few teams doing some shuffling for us to make a trade.

A straight up trade(just between us and another team) seems like a stretch. The teams behind us right now don't need to trade up to find a player that fits their needs. Look at the full draft board and it becomes apparant that we may be stuck.

The scenario I layed out involved the Pats. A team that I believe will control the ebb and flow of the first round. If a team in front of us trades back to their spot at 28(in can be any team, not just Arizona) It would most likely come with a price tag of one Of the Pats second rounders. History of the draft says that teams that move up more then 6 spots always come with second round compensation. Teams that move up 5 or less do not automatically get that second round pick.

Now hopefully player movement will be a part of the draft process. If we can include players, it would certainly sweeten the pot. And aid any possible trade we try and set up. IF, and a big IF. The CBA is not resolved before the draft. I think you can forget about using future picks. I would think that teams would be forced to keep these picks close to their vests. What good would it do to trade away for a pick that in some possibility may never happen?

Hard choices for a group that has been 7 and 9 the last two seasons.

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