Yes, I did place Matt Barkley at number seven yesterday in my first mock draft of the off-season. The Arizona Cardinals are in desperate need of a quarterback. Is he the best quarterback in the draft? That is still very much up in the air. Does he necessarily fit the Cards new system? Maybe not. Will he be the best available quarterback when it comes time for the Cards to select a player? Quite possibly yes. I need to see more here in the off-season to come to a final conclusion. There will be others in the mix as well.
Here is how I rank the top five available quarterbacks in this years draft.
1. Matt Barkley – I am fully aware he doesn’t exactly fit the system of new head coach Bruce Arians. However, if you are in need of a qurterback this year, Barkley is one of the first guys teams will look at. Please don’t throw me the “well he went to USC”. I get it, historically USC quarterbacks have not fared well in the NFL recently. Barkley is a different individual. He just came off 36 TD’s against just 15 INT. Can he be that consistent down the field passer Arians wants and needs? Who knows. I like him better than Geno Smith, that’s for sure.
2. Geno Smith – many people have Smith as their number one rated quarterback in this draft. He is most likely gone before Arizona picks anyway, so it’s a moot point with him. He didn’t have a great second-half of the season and he refused to play in the Senior Bowl. Those are both red flags for me.
3. Tyler Wilson – Wilson threw for more yards than Barkley, despite getting fewer TD’s (21). He did only have 13 INT on a less-than-stellar Arkansas team. He could be the vertical passing thrower Arians is looking for. Wilson was ok in the Senior Bowl on Saturday. He went 8-11 for 40 yards. I need to see more.
4. Mike Glennon – Glennon threw for over 4,000 yards while throwing for 31 TD’s and 17 INT. He is another guy being looked at going high in the draft. He wasn’t too spectacular in the Senior Bowl going 8-16 for 82 yards. He has the arm but one knock on him is his footwork. Hmm..that sounds awfully familiar of a quarterback the Cards already employ, don’t you think?
5. Tyler Bray – the Tennessee product had a very good season on a mediocre team. He threw for 3,612 yards with 34 TD and 12 INT. He has great arm strength. He was considered possibly as the top prospect in the 2014 draft had he decided to stay in school. He could end up being the most gifted of this years bunch. The knock will be his leadership skills and that he is coming out possibly a year early as a junior.