Hopes for the Future
In the college drafts of the 1990s, 13 first-round picks have been used on quarterbacks, and so far only three—Jeff George, Drew Bledsoe and Rick Mirer—have shown any flashes of brilliance. NFL scouts expect as many as four quarterbacks to go in the first round of April's draft, especially if BYU's 6'4" junior John Walsh declares himself eligible. With the college season still in its infancy, here's how the two scouting services used by NFL teams have the top three seniors rated:
BLESTO (11 teams)
1. Steve McNair, 6'2", 218, Alcorn State
2. Rob Johnson, 6'4", 220, USC
3. Chad May, 6'2", 220, Kansas State
National Football Scouting (14 teams)
1. Eric Zeier, 6'1", 202, Georgia
Keep in mind that this is not an exact science; Zeier is seventh on the BLESTO list.
The NFL's 28 existing teams will soon vote on whether or not to give the two expansion teams that begin play next season an extra draft choice in the first round of next April's draft. The betting here is that the owners won't, rationalizing that the Carolina Panthers and the Jacksonville Jaguars will be able to purchase enough high-quality free agents. That would be a bush move. Wayne Weaver, the Jacksonville owner, figures that, though he spent $215 million to enter this exclusive club, his fellow owners won't give his Jaguars a fighting chance to be competitive early. Sadly, he's right....
Hey, maybe this union thing isn't such a bad idea after all. Bronco quarterback John Elway, a vocal critic of the NFL Players Association during the 1987 players' strike, will be getting a check for $50,625 in his mailbox any day now. That represents one Sunday's pay for Elway in '87, plus interest, and it will be coming his way thanks to a legal victory for the NFLPA that stems from the strike, when the players returned after a three-week walkout only to be wrongly locked out by the owners....