The man who recruited quarterbck Marcus Mariota to Oregon has no issue with Mariota’s decision to stay there. Especially since Chip Kelly doesn’t currently need a quarterback.
Kelly applauded Mariota’s decision to stay in school, via John Gonzalez of CSNPhilly.com. And Kelly suggested that Mariota’s decision could extend through 2015.
“I’m happy for him,” Kelly said. “I know he comes from a great family. His dad and mom value education. Marcus is going to stay and get his degree. He’s a really special young man. I think everyone in the league is going to have to wait a couple of years.”
Kelly said that he didn’t consult with Mariota about the decision. League rules prohibit it.
Then again, League rules also prohibit talking about an underclassman who has yet to be certified for the draft.
“I love coaching him,” Kelly said of Mariota. “He’s exactly what you want in a football player.”
It’s a good thing Nick Foles has been named the starter for the next 1,000 years. Otherwise, Foles could get the wrong idea.
Speaking of wrong, Mariota could be making the wrong decision. While it’s an intensely personal choice, we’ve seen more than a few guys wait — and suffer for it via their future draft stock. NFL teams want guys who crave the opportunity to compete at the highest level. When a guy’s draft stock already is as high as it likely will be, why wait?
Waiting also delays the player’s ability to get a second contract, which has become even more important in the wake of the new rookie wage scale.
Still, Mariota has the right to continue playing football for no money. Or, more accurately, for plenty of money that flows into someone else’s pockets.
But at least he gets to wear a different helmet every week.