Carson or Jared?

It’s not Leaf/Manning or Luck/RG3, but the debate is compelling

by Justin Day | @JDayErrday |

Every draft there is a debate, and it never fails that it is normally a quarterback driven conversation. Eli Manning or Phillip Rivers, Peyton Manning or Ryan Leaf, and most recently Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III? Some end in an obvious fashion, for example the Leaf or Peyton conversation. While others end with no clear cut winner, apart from Super Bowl rings Rivers and Eli are comparable in terms of skill.

This year is no different in that we have another conversation at the very top of the draft that will separate two camps, Team Goff or Team Wentz. At least two teams we know for sure are sold on each of these two guys and that is the Rams and Eagles, both of which who traded to the very top of the draft to secure grabbing one of these two guys for their franchises. Where do I stand and why? I’m happy you asked and I have an answer.

Before I answer that question though I have to make a few things clear; Neither of these two are finished products, but one is closer than the other and one is my #1 quarterback and the other is my #3, so unlike most draft analysts I do believe there is a clear cut choice in this debate. Before I give an answer I would like to delve into these prospects just a little bit more just so everyone has a strong sense of where I stand and why I take that stance.

Jared Goff

Jared Goff talks with the media at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis in February.

Let’s kick it off with the Cal product in Jared Goff. There is a lot to like in this kid’s game and his brain has a lot to do with it. By all accounts he has been really well on the board when coaches have put him on the spot in interviews and the way he picks apart defenses before the play would attest to that. On the other hand his brain also gets him into trouble and that also shows on the tape as well. With a playbook that throws on as many run plays as anyone in the country, defenses would pick up on where Goff liked to go on said plays and that tended to get him into trouble late in games as he would just stick to what he knew.

Another big pro in Goff’s game is that velocity in which he throws the ball and squeezes them into those windows. He is able to stare down the barrel of a gun and deliver the ball on time across the field all the while taking a hit. He did develop same bad habits though with his feet throwing under all that pressure and he throws the ball flat footed a lot and he’s gotten away with it in college but just his arm cannot win throws in the NFL.

Carson Wentz

A lot of attraction got put on Carson Wentz at the Senior Bowl.

On the other hand we have the Bison, Carson Wentz. I am not sure there is a quarterback with better footwork in this entire class. He uses his lower body to set up all of his throws and it shows with how consistent his release point is and how well the timing is with his receivers. On the other hand he too can predetermine throws and kind of stick to what he knows at time and even though he is athletic he does have a tendency to try to extend a play and fumble the football.

Wentz’s size, arm strength, and touch are a deathly combination and all of the things that you look for in a franchise quarterback. He’s also a guy who by all accounts has absolutely blew coaches away when they put him on the board in interviews. Oh and also he is a winner and you can talk about the “level of competition” or whatever you want to call it, but when you go 19-3 as a starter, you’re clearly onto something and Wentz clearly gets what it is to be a winner. Also for those who want to question the “level of competition”, I give you: Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Jerry Rice, Kurt Warner, this year David Johnson, etc. So that argument absolutely holds ZERO value in this debate in my opinion.

So in conclusion, I think the clear cut winner here is Carson Wentz and I’m not sure it’s even that close. Wentz surpassed Christian Hackenberg as my top quarterback in this class and I said no one would be able to do that, but he did. I still believe Hack has the highest ceiling in this class, but Wentz is the better pro prospect at the moment. Goff on the other hand to me is a guy who is really good and could start for a long time, but I just don’t see a superstar in him.

I could be wrong, I’m probably not, so in this debate I’m taking Carson Wentz.

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