The MMQB posted a Q&A today with former QB and current ESPN analyst, Trent Dilfer. In the interview, the conversation turned to quarterbacks from this year’s draft class.
KAHLER: Which quarterback pick in this year’s draft surprised you the most?
DILFER: I was surprised that Paxton Lynch went that high, that he was the guy that was targeted by Denver. Not because I don’t like him, but the tape—he was so raw. You know there is going to be a steep learning curve there. I think that was one that I was surprised at, not shocked at, but a little surprised.
After a few more questions about QB development around the league in general, they asked Dilfer outright if he thinks Lynch will see the field this year.
KAHLER: Will Paxton Lynch see the field?
DILFER: No. I think Paxton, of all the quarterbacks, has the most learning to do. He is more of the developmental mold than the others who were taken. For that reason I think it will be between Mark Sanchez and Trevor Siemian.
What transpired next might cause a bit of a ruckus.
KAHLER: Holdup. As a Northwestern alumni, I have to ask, what kind of chance does fellow Wildcat and 2015 seventh-round pick Trevor Siemian have at the Denver job?
DILFER: He is a talented kid and I really liked him coming out. He was a kid that was exciting because he got the chance to learn and go to an organization where they believed in him. It is interesting how well he has done in a short time there. He has the talent to do it. He has the competitive spirit and the mind to do it. He just has to get once chance, one opportunity and he has to capitalize on it. The reality of it is, when you aren’t a high draft pick you don’t get the same leash as others do. He just has to make sure that he pounces on that opportunity.
Regardless of whether you agree with his take or not, there’s no denying Dilfer knows a thing or two about quarterbacks. Not only has he played the position for 14 years, but for the last 6 years he has been the head coach for the Elite 11, the premier high school QB competition that has seen the likes of Andrew Luck, Matthew Stafford, Jameis Winston, Teddy Bridgewater, and Mark Sanchez as finalists. Additionally, 80% of Power Five starting QBs in college football are Elite 11 graduates. So it is interesting to hear his take on our QB’s development.
To me, Lynch seems to be in a similar boat as Brock Osweiler coming out in terms of high upside and physical ability, but near consensus among experts that he should sit a year to develop first.
The Afternoon Drive brought up Dilfer’s take on their show today and disagreed with it, making some good points around the ability of Kubiak’s offense to simplify things for a new QB. Saying they expect Lynch to start this year. Take a listen below.
Things are far from set in stone and it will no doubt be a fun (and heavily analyzed) training camp and pre-season as this continues to play out.