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Russ Lande: Tannehill has strongest arm in 2012 draft

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Former Ravens head coach Brian Billick isn’t high on former Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill as a 2012 draft prospect, but league evaluators certainly seem to be. Tannehill is widely regarded as a surefire top-12 pick.

Russ Lande of Sporting News isn’t in the league anymore, but he has experience as an NFL scout. Now a leading “draftnik,” Lande rates Tannehill with the strongest arm among quarterbacks in the 2012 draft class.

“Tannehill has risen up draft boards so fast because he reminds many of a more consistent Jay Cutler,” Lande wrote in a piece ranking and analyzing this year’s draft-eligible quarterbacks. “The ball explodes out of Tannehill’s hand and gets to the receiver before defenders can make a play.”

Tannehill is suddenly the most polarizing player in the draft. Thursday’s episode of NFL Live on ESPN opened with a Todd McShay-Mel Kiper back-and-forth argument debating Tannehill’s draft-day value, as well as his outlook as an NFL player.

McShay is much higher on Tannehill than Kiper. Appearing on ESPN radio Thursday, McShay opined that Tannehill’s physical talent is superior to currently projected 2013 No. 1 overall pick Matt Barkley.

“I think [Tannehill] has greater upside, physically,” McShay said. “I just look at the two. Tannehill has a better arm, more mobile. I think he has better tools [than Barkley] if he can get there.”

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73 Responses to “Russ Lande: Tannehill has strongest arm in 2012 draft”
  1. tompeppermint says: Apr 13, 2012 3:24 PM

    The Vikings should draft Tannehill and trade Ponder for a backup punter.

  2. tombradyallday says: Apr 13, 2012 3:25 PM

    ayye russ do what mike mayock does, put the tape in. rgIII arm is much stronger

  3. preventoffense says: Apr 13, 2012 3:26 PM

    Here we go!

  4. westampa says: Apr 13, 2012 3:26 PM

    The Eagles & Chiefs are just blowing smoke in hopes he is drafted before them, so that more quality players fall.

  5. r0b1b0y says: Apr 13, 2012 3:27 PM

    What does this have to do with Loomis working for Saints/Hornets and the possibility of Payton getting job with Hornets as well?

  6. mwcarolina says: Apr 13, 2012 3:27 PM

    cant agree. i think Griffin’s got the strongest arm in this draft, Tannehill does have a strong arm, but i think Griffin’s is stronger.

    Agree also that Tannehill’s arm is stronger than Barkley’s, but i think Barkley’s going to be better than Tannehill later on.

  7. conormacleod says: Apr 13, 2012 3:28 PM

    Come on Cleveland, you know you want to trade up a spot to nab him!

  8. sbxxix says: Apr 13, 2012 3:28 PM

    I think I heard people say comething like that about Ryan Leaf and J Russel. I’m sure he’ll do better than both tho

  9. sbxxix says: Apr 13, 2012 3:28 PM

    I think I heard people say comething like that about Ryan Leaf and J Russel. I’m sure he’ll do better than both tho… combined!

  10. joe6ixpack says: Apr 13, 2012 3:29 PM

    Who the hell is Tannehill’s agent? The man deserves at least 2% more than he’s making.

  11. mnovis says: Apr 13, 2012 3:29 PM

    Lotta hype, someones gonna trade up to 3 to get him.

  12. steviemo says: Apr 13, 2012 3:30 PM

    Which means almost nothing. Ask all the other big-armed QB’s who never did diddly squat in the NFL.

  13. baddegg says: Apr 13, 2012 3:30 PM

    …and everyone just rushed over to Jim Irsay’s twitter account…

  14. mdpickles says: Apr 13, 2012 3:32 PM

    Even though the Eagles have holes to fill, something tells me that a draft day trade of A. Samuel and the load of picks they have will be moved to get this guy.

  15. clw1906 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:33 PM

    Kyle Boller

  16. deadeye says: Apr 13, 2012 3:34 PM

    The talking heads don’t know anything, we’ll find out on draft day what Tannehill’s real value is.

    I’m guessing that #8 is the earliest spot that he could reasonably be drafted.

  17. axlviking says: Apr 13, 2012 3:34 PM

    Didn’t they say the same thing about Ryan Mallet?

  18. socalskinsfan says: Apr 13, 2012 3:36 PM

    /googles list of Brian Billick’s record of drafting QBs

    Why does anyone care about Billick’s thoughts on Tannehill? He’s on record as having Jamarcus F. Russell at the top of his draft board!

  19. whatnojets says: Apr 13, 2012 3:38 PM

    Irsay is flabergasted!

  20. skoobyfl says: Apr 13, 2012 3:38 PM

    Ryan Leaf, he isn’t.

  21. jluns275 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:39 PM

    Why does everyone keep listening to Brian Billick attempt to evaluate NFL QBs? He went his entire NFL coaching career without developing one. Kyle Boller, Chris Redmond, Elvis Grbac, Tony Banks, to name a few of his star QBs @ Baltimore. Billick won a ring w/ Trent Dilfer, but cut him almost immediately. Billick went 15 – 1 w/ Randall Cunningham being @ the end of his career. Clearly Billick cannot evaluate or develop a QB @ the NFL level. Also, he holds the dubious distinction of being the only Super Bowl winning coach of the last 15 years that can’t get a coaching or front office job in the league.

  22. forthelove says: Apr 13, 2012 3:40 PM

    So what. Jamarcus Russell had the strongest of the century.

  23. truthassassin says: Apr 13, 2012 3:41 PM

    If someone trades up to #3 to nab this kid I’m going to die laughing… He’s got promise, but also a lot of risk…

  24. alaricsrevenge says: Apr 13, 2012 3:41 PM

    But how far can he throw from his knee?

  25. LoCoSu@%s says: Apr 13, 2012 3:42 PM

    The ball exploded much quicker out of Jamarcus Russell’s hand as well.
    Kyle Boller threw the ball thru the goal posts while kneeling on th 50 yard line.
    Jim Druckenmiller could tug a jeep (or truck or something heavy at any rate) with rope tied around his waist.

    What do all these have to do with intelligent Quarterbacking and decision making?


    Thought so – nothing.
    I’ll stick with proven winners Luck and RG III

  26. 49erstim says: Apr 13, 2012 3:43 PM

    This is what I’ve been talking about!…. Not that Tannehill is awesome, but that we’d get inundated with garbage about how great the QBs are after AL1 and RG3. Tannehill went from Colt2.0 to Cutler2.0???…and he hasn’t played football in months! This is another prime example of the ESPN BS machine filling space and feeding itself. Next week they’ll be hot and heavy Osweiler…just you watch!

  27. tamor78 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:43 PM

    That’s nice….Jamarcus Russel had the strongest arm ever..ask him how that’s working out for him

  28. babyhorsemorgan says: Apr 13, 2012 3:44 PM

    Tannehill = Jay Cutler.

    Meaning Luck = Vince Young, and Griffin = Matt Leinart.

    No wait, that doesn’t look right for some reason….

  29. jesse1834 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:45 PM

    Not falling for these lame pre-draft hype stories. The NFL schedule will be out soon. Wait ’til that comes out and write about that and not some guy that may take 3 years to develop into an NFL QB.

  30. deathtoromo says: Apr 13, 2012 3:45 PM

    Tannehill sucked against good defenses so naturally he’ll light it up in the nfl….right.

  31. vcstriker16 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:46 PM

    Why is McShay comparing Tannehill to Matt Barkley? Matt Barkley has zero relevance to the 2012 draft.

  32. jclown says: Apr 13, 2012 3:47 PM

    Jeff Ireland, PLEASE don’t buy in to all of the Tannehill hype! Draft a real player that will add value as a starter, not a 3 year project that will never pan out!

  33. polishkingski says: Apr 13, 2012 3:48 PM

    my ex bro inlaw still has friends in buffalo`s scouting dept and they say tannehill is just a “flavor of the day”qb. but since its buffalo scouts saying that, he probably is really good.

  34. trbowman says: Apr 13, 2012 3:49 PM

    Too bad for Browns fans their management is too stupid to draft him.

    I guarantee that passing on Tannehill will ultimately get Shurmur and Holmgren fired.

  35. granadafan says: Apr 13, 2012 3:49 PM

    Who cares if he has the strongest arm? Those who take the strongest arm or the best measurables are doomed to be a contender……..

    for the #1 draft pick in the near future.

  36. kwgator says: Apr 13, 2012 3:49 PM

    Rusty Griswald Agrees

  37. trollhammer20 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:53 PM

    You know, if he doesn’t go by 12, I might not mind seeing Seattle pick him up, depending on who else may be available.

    It would rather be a mess with him and Flynn, though. Seems to me most great teams have one definite starter at QB. A team with two QBs who may be starters is a team with a QB controversy, and those teams never seem to get too far.

  38. whitecastleisafoodgroup says: Apr 13, 2012 3:57 PM

    Bobby Douglas had a canon of an arm but that didn’t make him a better QB. It just meant he dislocated more WR’s fingers in his era.

  39. starfan79 says: Apr 13, 2012 3:57 PM

    Jamarcus Russell had a strong arm too..

  40. theytukrjobs says: Apr 13, 2012 3:58 PM

    I love when people make comments like “yeah a lot of people said J Russel and Ryan Leaf had big arms, see where that got them”.

    You know what. A lot of people were high on the arms of Elway and Manning. Rivers and Cutler. A lot of guys thought Eli Manning was a good prospect.

    Yeah we get it. Some QB’s make it and some don’t. But by far most of the best QB’s in the NFL were drafted in the first round so it isn’t like all of this is about nothing. For every Tom Brady there are two Manning’s…literally!

  41. tropicpurple says: Apr 13, 2012 3:58 PM

    Perception is reality. As a Viking fan, this perception is all too good to be true, keep the glowing reports and comparisons comming! 🙂

  42. henryjones20 says: Apr 13, 2012 4:00 PM

    Didn’t mike mayock preach 2 us how arm strength don’t matter? Lol jamarcus tannihill.

  43. linvillegorge says: Apr 13, 2012 4:05 PM

    Why would anyone value Brian Billick’s opinion on a QB prospect? Just look at the guys he brought to Baltimore and combine that with the fact that he admitted that Jamarcus Russell was the highest rated player ever on his draft board. Just go with the opposite of what he says and you’ll probably do fairly well.

  44. baddegg says: Apr 13, 2012 4:10 PM

    Any truth to the rumor that Tannehill just turned down a private workout with the Colts?


  45. plumbstupid says: Apr 13, 2012 4:17 PM

    “Tannehill is suddenly the most polarizing player in the draft.”

    I think Dontarie Poe still has that honor.

  46. mrhurriicane says: Apr 13, 2012 4:20 PM

    Who cares about arm strength? Jamarcus Russel had a cannon too. Accuracy, pocket presence, leadership, mobility, intelligence, that is what matters.

  47. latazep says: Apr 13, 2012 4:23 PM

    Tannehill has bust written all over him, if the eagles draft him it would be the last bad move of the fatAndy era

  48. musicman495 says: Apr 13, 2012 4:25 PM

    Meaningless observationm if even if true. Other guys who were the strongest arms in their draft class – Ryan Leaf, Jeff George, JaMarcus Russell. The road to QB hell is paved with guys with great arms. What is between his ears? If he can handle the mental part of the game, fine. If not, he is doomed to the scrapheap of NFL history.

  49. aglawman says: Apr 13, 2012 4:26 PM

    Hang on…didn’t Tannehill beat the guts outta RGIII in their last head-to-head matchup?

    What say all you RGIII fans? Tannehill whacked RGIII with inferior talent.

    By 2015, Griffin will a talking head…discussing Tannehill’s first Super Bowl appearance.

  50. 440shane says: Apr 13, 2012 4:35 PM

    Strongest arm? Great for him, too bad he sucks at this certain thing called playing quarterback

  51. rowdymon says: Apr 13, 2012 4:38 PM

    I’ll take accuracy over strong arm every time. How many 40 yard pass plays are there in a season?

  52. david7590 says: Apr 13, 2012 4:44 PM

    And Browning Nagle had a stronger arm than Favre in 1991. Look how that turned out.

  53. gmen1987 says: Apr 13, 2012 4:46 PM

    I have more physical talent than Matt Barkley. Sorry folks, there is going to be better pro prospects than Barkey next year. Barkley is just another overhyped USC QB who doesn’t have the talent to be an impact player in the NFL.

  54. stavreafavre says: Apr 13, 2012 4:46 PM

    May have a great arm but his teams turn out to be very average.

  55. spilkysmooth says: Apr 13, 2012 5:16 PM

    FYI first time poster but long time reader!As a Bmore fan Billick’s talk of drafting QB’s is laughable , he had little to no say in the draft room and the one time he pushed for a QB it was Boller ! Enough said ? Great guy, good leader, media loved him but offensive/QB expert , not in this fan’s opinion.

  56. truths4all says: Apr 13, 2012 5:17 PM

    So the Strong Arm is now valued. Someone better tell Jeff George to get back in training as Miami needs someone soon.

  57. truthhurtstoo says: Apr 13, 2012 5:20 PM

    All Qbs mentioned are better than little markie sanchez…

  58. bigdawg2011 says: Apr 13, 2012 5:29 PM

    Good to know his arm is bigger than his little hands. He does not have the strongest arm and the ball seems to flutter to the receiver at times..People mistake Griffins one good year of throwing a nice deep ball to having a great arm..Does anyone actually watch these guys play or do they just read reports. None of these guys have a cannon arm so they all look close but both Griffins and Tannehills are slightly above average..

    I have a feeling that Andy Reid knowing this is going to be his last year in Philly and having a nice nest egg of a landing spot in Cleveland working with Holmgren and Heckert, Shurmer, Childress, Ray Rhodes etc, will be setting Cleveland up nice with a favorable trade and possibly futures.. Kind of like a Scratching back thing..

  59. bigdawg2011 says: Apr 13, 2012 5:33 PM

    ^^^^Much like Shannahan did for Fisher old buddy..When Shanny is fired after the skins still suck this year, he will be in Washington figuring out who he wants with his old picks..

  60. Captain Chaos says: Apr 13, 2012 5:54 PM

    Yeah, well Jamarcus had a great arm too. We see how well that went.

  61. ocho says: Apr 13, 2012 6:08 PM

    Shannahan loved Cutler, makes you think Tannehill wouldve been the Skins target if he was really anything like Cutler.

  62. blackqbwhiterb says: Apr 13, 2012 6:09 PM

    I would have been thrilled if the Redskins took Tanny at 6…..i believe he’s going to be good in the NFL….now, I’m hoping rg3 lives up to the hype….

  63. jmsieli says: Apr 13, 2012 6:10 PM

    Who talked about RG III a year ago, RG WHO! that would be no one, it was all about Cam, because Luck didn’t come out, from what I read Tannehill would rated higher then all of the quaterbacks taken after Cam last year, by that then Tannehill should go top five.

  64. ddmcd1974 says: Apr 13, 2012 6:22 PM

    Three weeks ago the chatter was rg3 had a bigger arm than luck. Now the strong arm means squat? I think I saw tannihill light rg3 team up. Rg3 is that guy in Seattle who was with minny. I swear watch the tape. They look exactly the same. And skin color is not what I’m discussing. Just plain old style arm strength, moving in the pocket etc.

  65. hallcyon says: Apr 13, 2012 6:36 PM

    If Billick had the ability to evaluate Quarterback talent, he would still be Head Coach of the Ravens and would have several rings. I watched Tanneyhill and he is a player who can intelligently answer in the fourth quarter with accuracy. Really moves his legs well, great footwork, and he can only get better.

  66. drunkenagitator says: Apr 13, 2012 6:42 PM

    Massively overrated. Tannehill is, at best, a low 2nd round pick, if that. This happens every single year, some QB suddenly rockets up the boards based on hype and some team reaches for him way too high. Luck & RGIII are the only two legit 1st rounders in the draft. Weeden is the next best option and the rest of them are basically interchangeable, low-level prospects worth a 2 or 3 for a QB-desperate team.

  67. realdealsteel says: Apr 13, 2012 6:52 PM

    Arm Strength isn’t what you hold most dear when it comes to a QB.

    Playing quarterback is mostly about what you have above the neck. Go get the tapes of Tannehill agianst the top college teams he played and see how he made all those sub-par decisions with that strong arm.

  68. andyreiddoublecheeseburger says: Apr 13, 2012 7:00 PM

    Tannehill has the best arm, yet also the smallest hands…odd. By the way, who’s Russ Lande?

  69. mistrezzrachael says: Apr 13, 2012 7:03 PM

    Very few, if any QB’s have succeeded in NFL without ever having won in college.

    He is Dolphins last..QB HOPE …of the year..and expected to go at #8…Dolphins have to draft, a ‘HOPE’, or they’ll be lucky to gather 20,000 fans each game..unless opposing fans.

    So, everyone talks about his arm…yet noone his IQand ability to read defenses. Does he take a half secon d to read defenses like Brady, Brees, Montana known for…or 4-5 seconds like Culpepper, Russell etc????

  70. lostsok says: Apr 13, 2012 7:03 PM

    If Tannehill’s arm is so impressive…why did he average 7.0 yard per attempt for his career, compared to 8.9 for Luck and Kellen Moore and 8.7 for RGIII? All the top prospects are over 8 yards per attempt…except Tannehill.

    JaMarcus had a rocket arm, too. If you can’t read defenses and lack touch…it means jack squat.

    I’m not saying Tannehill is going to be a bust, but that is a troubling metric no one is talking about or trying to explain.

  71. thehawg says: Apr 13, 2012 7:41 PM

    Time well tell us. I believe Brandon Weedon is the better QB. His team beat Stanford, Baylor & Texas A&M. I compare him to Andy Dalton of last year. Capable of starting the 1st year.

  72. laxcoach37 says: Apr 13, 2012 11:12 PM

    It cracks me up that hundreds of comments are made by people who probably can’t even throw a spiral…. Yet suddenly become QB Analyists. Get over yourselves. This is all hype brought on by interested parties ( Tannehill’s Agent, Front Offices of the Vikings, Desperate Writers and the Draftniks) Bottom Line: no one knows anything and only time will tell.

  73. qdog112 says: Apr 16, 2012 7:37 AM

    Tannehill didn’t make the combine, but Jordan Jefferson did and his ball was the hottest there. Tannehill is a raw talent who may develop into a good QB, but he is not one to be taken in the first round, let alone, top 5.

    These people have lost their minds.

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