Arms Race

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Arms Race
by Warren DeLuca

Note: This is fifth in a series of college prospect profiles in preparation for the 2005 NFL Draft next April. This time, we take a look at the top five quarterback prospects.

None of this year’s top quarterbacks has, as of yet, definitively separated himself from his peers and earned the status of the consensus top prospect at the position. This situation is not unlike those of the last few years when the best signal callers entered the season tightly packed atop the draft boards.

This year’s top five quarterback prospects are Southern Cal’s Matt Leinart, Connecticut’s Dan Orlvosky, Purdue’s Kyle Orton, California’s Aaron Rodgers, and Arizona State’s Andrew Walter. Leinart and Walter appear to be slight favorites at this point, but that could change if any of the group has a season reminiscent of David Carr’s 2001 or Carson Palmer’s 2002.

The Texans’ quarterback depth chart appears full from top to bottom. With starter Carr, veteran backup Tony Banks, developmental project Dave Ragone, and rookie B.J. Symons (who is expected to be socked away on the injured reserve or physically unable to perform list) all in fold, the Texans appear set at quarterback. However, Banks becomes a free agent after the season, and Charley Casserly has shown a willingness to draft quarterbacks regardless of whether or not the position is a dire need for the Texans. Arm strength is the common denominator for the Texan passers; dink-and-dunkers need not apply.

Other quarterbacks whose stock could soar with strong seasons:

Charlie Frye, Akron
Gino Guidugli, Cincinnati
David Greene, Georgia
Chris Rix, Florida State
Charlie Whitehurst, Clemson

Matt Leinart Matt Leinart Home

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