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Bruce Arians on drafting a quarterback in first round: Why?

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The Cardinals finished just short of a playoff spot this season and coach Bruce Arians said Wednesday that he thinks the team’s focus heading into the draft should be on adding players who will be able to help the team right away.

Arians made those comments when asked about the possibility that the team will take a quarterback with the 20th overall pick. Arians responded to that question with another one, asking “why?” before elaborating on his rationale for leaving well enough alone at the quarterback spot.

“We’ve got two pretty good ones that are younger [Drew Stanton and Ryan Lindley]. For us right now it’s about winning a championship,” Arians said, via Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic. “I don’t think we can afford to have a guy come in like that. I’m not a believer in a guy learning anything sitting on the bench. You have to play; it’s the only way you learn. He’s got to get the reps in practice, be under center and throwing all the time.”

Carson Palmer is 34 and signed through the 2014 season with a voidable year on his deal in 2015, so the Cardinals will need to find a new starter eventually. For now, though, Arians said he thinks the team should be looking for help on the offensive and defensive lines. Those needs could change once free agency gets going, but it doesn’t sound like the Cardinals are going to be bidding for a quarterback at the top of the 2014 draft.

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29 Responses to “Bruce Arians on drafting a quarterback in first round: Why?”
  1. tavisteelersfan says: Jan 22, 2014 2:41 PM

    Some guys are just smarter than others.

  2. GenXJay says: Jan 22, 2014 2:42 PM

    “Why?” – typically means of course I will.

  3. irootforthecardinals says: Jan 22, 2014 2:48 PM

    I hope this is a smokescreen. This is the most qualified coaching staff this franchise has ever had. Last 1st round qb was Leinart, it can only get better.

  4. thirdistheworrd says: Jan 22, 2014 3:05 PM

    Why? I’ll tell you why, and why Arians is full of it. Out of the ~1200 quarterbacks produced by D1 schools since 2001, only six drafted in the second round or later have proven they can be respectable, long-term NFL starters: Drew Brees, Tony Romo, Andy Dalton, Nick Foles, Colin Kaepernick, and Russell Wilson.
    “Why?” is bologna. If you want a quarterback, you need to get him in the first round.

  5. patriottony says: Jan 22, 2014 3:11 PM

    YO third….you kind of FORGOT one wearing #12……in the 6th round out of michigan…2 time Superbowl MVP…..just a little oversight

  6. dedicatedhawkfan says: Jan 22, 2014 3:12 PM

    Romo was drafted?

  7. dietrich43 says: Jan 22, 2014 3:13 PM

    “only six drafted in the second round or later have proven they can be respectable, long-term NFL starters”

    Who are the six? You only have four in your list plus Tony Romo and Andy Dalton.

  8. raiderrob21 says: Jan 22, 2014 3:14 PM

    As the 49ers and Seahawks have shown an average QB can get you to the big dance with a top defense, strong OL, and a good run game.

  9. ravenswhat says: Jan 22, 2014 3:29 PM

    Why? Because its just cheaper to find that needle in the haystack franchise QB these days. That’s why.

  10. jdphx says: Jan 22, 2014 3:31 PM

    Why?

    Cause it allows you to get accolades.. like Coach of the Year and stuff Bruce. That’s why.

  11. red2616 says: Jan 22, 2014 3:31 PM

    110% correct! 4 words Tom Brady, Joe Montana

  12. red2616 says: Jan 22, 2014 3:33 PM

    Russel Wilson, koeperdick, etc. NONE WERE 1st round.

  13. johnnyjagfan says: Jan 22, 2014 3:43 PM

    Arians said he “liked the look of his QB meeting room” and then did the Carson deal.

  14. indycard51 says: Jan 22, 2014 3:45 PM

    Don’t you think that six out of 1200 stat is rather misleading, given that 99% of FBS quarterbacks don’t even make the pros?

    Over the last three seasons, we’ve seen a large share of productive young QBs who weren’t drafted in the first round. Meanwhile, the only high draft pick to live up to the hype during that span is Andrew Luck and perhaps Cam Newton. The jury is still out on RGIII and Tannehill. Then you have guys like Brandon Weeden, Blaine Gabbert, and Christian Ponder who appear to have been wasted picks.

    It’s not worth taking a QB in the first round unless the organization falls in love with the guy and is absolutely committed to his development. And there aren’t many QBs in this draft that scream can’t-miss prospect…Teddy Bridgewater might be close because he seems to possess the desired character traits in addition to considerable skill—but even he looks to be somewhat of a project.

    Bruce is right: when it comes to the first round, it makes more sense to go with someone who can contribute immediately…especially for a team with veteran talent that doesn’t have time to wait around and endure the growing pains of a rookie QB.

  15. cardmagnet says: Jan 22, 2014 3:46 PM

    Yep, guys learn nothing on the bench. Practice squad “talents” Tom Brady and Tony Romo learned nothing sitting behind vets like Drew Bledsoe. Aaron Rodgers sure did flop after sitting multiple years behind the vet Brett Favre.

    There are just as many players who blossom from the bench as there are who blossom under center. Really, there are probably more that crumble under center that may have done well with a few years to learn the NFL game and be on an NFL training regime.

  16. columbo19 says: Jan 22, 2014 3:48 PM

    Johnny Unitas. 9th round draft pick

  17. MostlyRight says: Jan 22, 2014 3:48 PM

    Of the four final teams in the playoffs this year you have Kaepernick, Wilson and Brady who were not first rounders. Cards need an LT, whether by FA or high draft pick. Then QBOF, TE, SS, OLB. Then CB #2 and speed receiver/KR/PR type of guy.

  18. rugbyisbetter says: Jan 22, 2014 3:50 PM

    There is no right or wrong answer to this question. It is always relevant to the team’s draft needs and talent available.

    The year Tom Brady was out, the team didn’t turn around draft a QB in the first round.

    People on this post already put up names that were successful and not 1st rounders..

    But that doesnt mean 1st round QBs are poison. Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning, Big Ben, Eli Manning are all good examples that it can work too (don’t list who failed, it only strengthens my first 2 sentences)…

    Out..

  19. thestrategyexpert says: Jan 22, 2014 4:00 PM

    I would have said yeah we probably should consider a QB with the 1st pick above all other choices. And then just simply said after the fact that we did think about it, for 10 seconds, and we decided not to take one. Sorry if maybe you got the wrong idea, maybe you should have asked more questions, or asked us this after we did that 10 second process!

  20. theauger says: Jan 22, 2014 4:04 PM

    If you already have a QB on staff & under contract for 2 more seasons who threw for 4000+ yards, 63+%, & 24 TD(s), why would you draft a QB in the first round? All the while playing in the NFCBest & against the top 2 defensive teams in the NFL 4 times. And that was just in his first season under Arians when the whole team had trouble grasping the offense the first half of the season.

    There is zero need to waste a 1st round pick on a QB in a weak class while there are more pressing needs at tackle, edge rusher, & safety.

  21. red2616 says: Jan 22, 2014 4:09 PM

    I see people bad mouthing or thumbs down when I disprove the theory of drafting a QB in the first round. Are you guys idiots? Most successful QB’s are NOT a 1st rounder. Look it up BEFORE YOU POST. You just look uneducated! How can you read this article and hen thumbs down when I use koepeedick and Wilson as an example to NOT draft a QB in the 1st round. Plus this is about winning TODAY. Most QBs take time to develop so drafting in the 1st is a dumb idea talent, cap and playing time. History proves it!
    And if you think k Arians is I. This for accolades, you are a fool. He is one of the few that isn’t about awards! Pate Carroll, harbaufh, etc hell yes, Arians no! So let that one go!

  22. fordmandalay says: Jan 22, 2014 4:12 PM

    They don’t need to draft a QB – they’ll be getting Michael Vick from the Eagles very soon. Dream Team!

  23. silverbackdk says: Jan 22, 2014 4:20 PM

    I like the approach. Even with the picks Palmer was easily the best QB since Warner. The second part of the season was actually good and if that can translate to next season Cards will be a contender. Why take a chance on a young QB when you will are well of with the guy you have for another 2 seasons? The only reason the young QB’s mentioned succeeded, was that Seahawks and 49′ers had allready great D’s, OL and running games. Cardinals D is good, but the OL is a work in progress and much bigger need than QB.

  24. peopletrains says: Jan 22, 2014 4:22 PM

    Brady was drafted in 2000. Before you complain, check your facts.

  25. u4iadman says: Jan 22, 2014 4:31 PM

    Brady is a system QB, nothing more, check the stats.

  26. whatjusthapped says: Jan 22, 2014 4:56 PM

    These questions are beyond dumb. How do you expect to have an answer given they draft at #20 and who they might pick will be influenced by the first 19 that go off the board.

    For sure, two or three of the top 20 will be head scratchers, the Vikings at #8 are sure to be one of them because their GM is as desperate as they get.

  27. cardfan4ever says: Jan 22, 2014 5:10 PM

    Wasn’t Carson Palmer a #1 pick?

  28. sjs5y7 says: Jan 22, 2014 5:21 PM

    The real problem with him saying “Why?” is because he has no personal experience with a QB from any other round.

    All of his quarterbacks for his offenses have been first round picks. Every one. Palmer, Luck, Roethlisberger, Couch, Manning… even in 96 when working as a TE coach for the Saints, he had a first round QB in Everett. Only time was when he was a RB coach in KC with DeBerg, Jaworksi, and Pueller splitting for the next 3 years.

    Point is, you can’t say “Why?” Not until you actually work someone up to starting position, who isn’t a first rounder.

  29. jbell751 says: Jan 23, 2014 11:18 PM

    Arians didn’t say he wouldn’t draft a QB in the first round EVER. He just said he wouldn’t draft one this year. Why draft a QB to sit behind Carson if your passing on another player that is going to get playing time. Your first round pick should be an immediate impact guy unless your on a team that has a ton of picks or your team doesn’t have a ton of needs. The Cardinals are not either.

    But if Bridgewater fell to 20 I think BA would draft him. I said that last year if Geno fell to the second round the Cardinal would likely draft him so what do I know. (“I’m only tree and 1/2 year old” -Bugs Bunny)

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