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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Record number of rookie quarterbacks slated to start Week 1 of season

So far the number is holding at three which would be a record according the Elias Sports Bureau. Since the AFL-NFL merger, no more than two rookie quarterbacks have started Week 1 of the season as their team’s starting quarterback.

That looks to change with the Indianapolis Colts’ Andrew Luck, the Washington Redskins’ Robert Griffin III and the Cleveland Browns’ Brandon Weeden all expected to start the season at quarterback for their respective teams.

Those three may not be the only ones though. Because of an injury to quarterback David Garrard, the Miami Dolphins are considering giving their prized rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill the start on Week 1.

Starting this many rookie quarterbacks on Week 1 is an extremely interesting situation considering that the 2012 draft probably isn’t among the top five drafts since the merger in terms of quarterbacks being drafted.

Most people will look at the 1983 draft as the best quarterback draft class ever. That year Hall-of-Famers Dan Marino, John Elway and Jim Kelly were all drafted into the league.

The second spot would probably be a toss-up between the 1984 and the 2004 drafts. Quarterbacks Boomer Esiason, Jeff Hostetler, Jay Schroeder and Steve Young would be drafted in 1984 while the talented group of Eli Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers and Matt Schaub would come out of the 2004 draft.

The next draft in my opinion would have to be the 1971 draft that produced Jim Plunkett, Ken Anderson, Joe Theisman and of course Archie Manning.

The fifth spot is a hard one. Most would say the 1973 draft because of notable quarterbacks like Ron Jaworski and Dan Fouts but no one in that class ever won a Super Bowl. I personally like the class of 1987 better.

Okay now I know Rich Gannon, Jim Harbaugh and Vinny Testaverde probably aren’t very sexy names to throw into a quarterback draft conversation especially considering that no one from the 1987 class was able to win a ring either.

All three quarterbacks were pretty productive during their careers though, plus the 1987 draft produced a few more quarterbacks who had solid if unspectacular careers: Chris Miller and Steve Beuerlein.

Where the class of 2012 will rank when it’s all said and done is anyone’s guess but with potentially four guys looking to start the season under center for their teams, this class could possibly break into the top-five one day.

Especially if a fifth rookie quarterback is capable of joining his rookie brethren as a starter during Week 1. 

Russell Wilson who the Seattle Seahawks drafted in the third round has been giving projected starter Matt Flynn a run for his money during camp and is slated to start his team’s next preseason game. If he plays well then chances are he could push the number of rookie quarterbacks starting Week 1 to five.

Roosevelt Hall is an NFL Blogger for The Sport Mentalist and an NBA Blogger for The Sport Mentalist 2. He is also a Sports Reporter for Pro Sports Lives. He can be contacted at and be sure to follow him on Twitter @sportmentalist.
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