Tuesday, November 11, 2008

You've impressed me so far, rookie quarterbacks

Not that they need my validation. And not that my validation means anything. But I, like many, am always apprehensive when it comes to highly drafted rookie QB's. (See: Ryan Leaf, Akili Smith, Tim Couch)

This year, though, we've seen a much different outcome from the two young guns. Both have guided their teams to 6-3 records, much better than anyone would have thought. That is especially true for Matt Ryan, the Falcons rookie QB, who came to a team that was a complete mess last year following the Mike Vick situation and Bobby Petrino's rapid departure.

Joe Flacco, the Ravens rookie QB, played his collegiate football at Delaware, not exactly a football powerhouse, and a school that plays much lesser competition than most. I was concerned that Flacco would be like Alex Smith, a very good college quarterback who couldn't cut it in the NFL. That hasn't been the case, as we look at the stats.

Joe Flacco 151/253, 62.1% 1,649 yds 7td 79.7 rating
Matt Ryan 149/250, 59.6% 1,909 yds 11td 89.9 rating

Not gaudy numbers, by any means, but impressive for rookies adjusting to a new pace of play and talent level.

Granted, it's very early and both of these guys could fall flat on their faces at any moment. That doesn't seem likely, though.

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