I am pleased to present a guest editorial written by Cliff Holmes, exploring some of the reasons an NFL team might favor the mercurial Robert Griffin III over Andrew Luck on their draft boards. Enjoy, and please leave your thoughts on this manner. After all, comments are what make writing these articles so much fun.
Robert Griffin III vs. Andrew Luck
Now that the NFL season is over, we can all devote our complete attention the the draft. Technically, the Indianapolis Colts have been on the clock for the last couple of weeks. Realistically, they’ve been on the clock since about week 4 of the season.
As the days go by, it does not look like Peyton Manning will be returning to the Colts. It is looking more and more likely that the Colts will keep their #1 pick and draft a quarterback.
Most of the experts will tell you that it is a no brain-er that the Colts will be taking Andrew Luck. While I think Luck is probably the one that the Colts will draft, I don’t think that it is slam dunk that the Colts will take him. There is a possibility that they will take Robert Griffin III with the first pick. You’re probably thinking that it is crazy for them to take Griffin over Luck. Not really. I’d like to present the argument as to why the Colts (or any other NFL team) would take Griffin over Luck.
Griffin Has a Higher Ceiling
Right now Luck seems to be a much better NFL quarterback prospect. However, Griffin is a better athlete and it isn’t even close. He arguably has world class speed. He broke the state records for the 110 and 300 meter hurdles in high school. He was also tied for the #1 sprint hurdler in the nation.
Griffin has been compared to Michael Vick by some as a result of his speed. Many believe that he is faster than Michael Vick. But, unlike Vick, Griffin was a much more accomplished passer in college. He finished his senior year with a 72.4% completion percentage. Vick’s highest completion percentage in college was 58.8% Griffin has the potential to dominate a game with both his arm and/or his legs. Granted, NFL passing and college passing are completely different, but the potential is definitely there.
Griffin Is More Marketable
In many NFL war rooms, the owner has a big say about who gets drafted. Griffin has the type of skills that people will pay to see. Look at what Michael Vick did for Atlanta. Even though he had flawed passing skills, people still came by the thousands to see him make plays.
Believe it or not, there are some owners that are more concerned about selling out the stadium, than they are about winning games. Owners think about sponsorships and generating revenue. Ultimately they’re the ones that will be writing the check.
Griffin Has a More Compelling Story
This goes along with the marketability aspect. America likes underdogs. America also likes stories and people they can relate to. When you look at Griffin’s background, there are more elements for people to latch on to than you would find with Luck. Compare the colleges they went to. More people can relate to Baylor (Griffin) than Stanford (Luck).
Griffin’s parents were army sergeants while Luck’s father is a former NFL quarterback. If we were really honest with ourselves we would realize that more people can relate to an army sergeant as opposed to a NFL quarterback.
Choosing Luck would be the safer pick. He has all the physical tools to make it in the NFL. He should be able to come in and immediately contribute to any team that drafts him. As of right now, Griffin’s height and frame would make some teams hesitant to take him with the #1 overall pick. He’s listed at 6’2”, but we won’t know how legitimate that is until the combine.
Here is the bottom line. We have seen players with Andrew Luck’s skill set before. I would argue that we have never seen a player with the dual threat abilities to the level that Robert Griffin III posses. Any team that drafts Robert Griffin III could potentially be selecting the most physically gifted quarterback that the NFL has ever seen. If given the choice, which one would you select?
[img credit: nfl.com]
Cliff Holmes is a blog contributor for Gold Star Games, a tailgating games company.