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Feel free to criticize anything I'm about to type here, but I implore you to read the entire post first because I simply don't understand why more Bills fans refuse to jump on the Lamar Jackson train. He threw for more one more touchdown than Rosen and Darnold in a much tougher conference on a less talented team. (this is coming from a Louisville fan so please, call me biased, I'll be the first to admit it) He ran for 50 touchdowns in his career. He threw for 27 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in his last year while rushing for 18 touchdowns. This is following a year in which he won the Heisman trophy and every coach is keying in on stopping him more than any other single player. He had the same amount of interceptions as Rosen last year, yet Rosen is consistently crowned by "experts" as the most polished, accurate, NFL ready QB in the draft, while Jackson is considered the most innacurate QB in the draft...WHAT?? Experts praise Allen for his arm strength and how much zip he can put on the ball, he's also praised for his big frame. Meanwhile Jackson is only 2 inches shorter than Allen...oh and here's a video of Lamar throwing a football 95 yards in high school: If that video is too low quality for you I understand. Here's a video of Jackson nearly breaking dude's fingers in 2014: The receivers' reactions say it all. Lamar Jackson had the highest receiver drop rate in the country last year. Why is this? Because he has an absolute ROCKET of an arm. One of the main criticisms of Jackson is his poor completion percentage. Here are the completion stats for each of the top QB prospects last year per sports-reference.com. Darnold: 64.9% Mayfield: 70.5% Rosen: 62.6% Allen: 56.2% Jackson: 57% With the highest receiver drop rate in the country He's consistently had a laxkluster offensive line during his tenure while going up against some of the best defensive lines in the country in the ACC. His running back was a quarterback converted to receiver (with the emergence of Jackson) converted again to running back in Jackson's final year. With this being said Jackson's statistics are absolutely unprecedented. Michael Vick has gone on record several times saying Jackson is better than he was at that age, which for whatever reason seems to mean nothing to anybody. 2001 Michael Vick: 6'0 210lbs 2018 Lamar Jackson: 6'3 200lbs Experts also question his football IQ...take away your bias if who he is as a man, if you don't think Bobby Petrino runs one of the more complicated offensive systems in football then I have to question whether you actually watch both college and professional football or if you just allow yourself to be spoon-fed whatever NFL Network and ESPN tells you. During Jackson's freshman year when he came in and dominated Bobby Petrino went on record as saying Jackson didn't even know the majority of the plays yet when he got his first start. The next year he had one of the best statistical season in history and won the Heisman trophy over Deshaun Watson who probably would have won it almost any other year with his 2016-17 stats and is currently looking like the best QB from last years draft. Football IQ can be taught, talent cannot. I'm not going to sully this post by trying to make the case for Jackson being the victim of some systemic racial QB bias, but the case these so-called experts make for the rest of the quarterbacks in this draft being a better prospect than Jackson just do not make any sense to me. The only quarterback I think who may be a better prospect than Jackson is Mayfield. There are holes all over this roster despite our lucking into the playoffs last year on a miracle throw/upset. Trading up into the top 5 to take a Rosen or Allen would be a huge mistake IMO when we can draft Jackson at either 12 or 22 and use our other 5 picks in the top 3 rounds to take franchise players who will KEEP us in the playoffs. Thanks for reading. Feel free to make a counter argument, but I'm going to finish this post with his highlights from last year and I just want you to imagine a backfield with Lamar Jackson and Shady McCoy and tell me that wouldn't be a fun time to be a Bills fan.
Exhibit A for why it may not be the end of the world if the Bills are unable to land one of those top QBs in the draft: 1985. Most pundits agree that was the best draft in team history -- and like this year, the Bills had 2 firsts, 2 seconds and 2 thirds. The team was terrible back then; had the #1 overall pick in the draft, and the QB situation was a mess. Ferguson was gone, and the team wound up playing through the season with journeyman Vince Ferragamo at QB. But guess what? Instead of selling the farm to draft a QB, they made great use of their picks to fortify other positions. Bruce and Andre -- both Hall of Famers -- came out of that draft. They waited until the 3rd round to address the QB position, and took a guy that was projected to be (and tuned out to be) a career backup. Youmay remember him, his name was Frank Reich. I guess my point is that there is so much hand-wringing going on about "worst possible scenarios" if, say, 5 QBs get drafted in the top 11. The way I see it, if 5 really do go before the Bills pick at 12, that means that a top-7 overall player at another position will be available at 12. Given the quotes I have read stating that some executives believe that there are 8 non-QB blue chip prospects in this draft, that would mean that at least 2 of them would still be available if indeed 4-5 QBs go before the Bills pick. As much as I would love to land that franchise QB we have all been clamoring for in this draft (and hoping one falls to us), there are so many other needs that could also be addressed. I could live with rolling the dice with McCarron and hoping to catch lightening in a bottle with a Faulk or Lauretta later in the draft if it means enhancing the lineup at 3-4 other positions. I, for one, will not be cursing Beane's name if he is somehow unable to draft one of those top 4-5 QBs, provided that he uses the picks we have wisely. Going back to 1985, that draft laid much of the ground work for the future Super Bowl teams, but the QB position was not truly addressed until the FOLLOWING year when the USFL collapsed, and Jim Kelly came to town.