**This post got lost a bit in the Darrelle Revis hoopla on Sunday morning, so Joe’s tossing it up here again. Enjoy.
Former Bucs quarterback Jeff Carlson (1990 & 1991) writes The QB Blast column here at JoeBucsFan.com. Joe loves when Carlson fires away. Carlson is often seen as a football color analyst on Bright House Sports Network, and he trains quarterbacks of all ages locally via his company, America’s Best Quarterback. Plus, he’s a really cool dude.
By JEFF CARLSON
This year’s draft does not offer an Andrew Luck, RGIII or Russell Wilson, quarterbacks with the ability to come in and start on Day 1. The Buccaneers don’t have that Day 1 need, but developing a QB for the future should be a priority even though Freeman is still very young, a third- or fourth-round pick used on a quarterback with promise is prudent.
Whether Josh Freeman has the best season of his life this year and earns a big multi-year contract or doesn’t, having another up-and-coming player ready to go is in the Bucs’ best interest for multiple reasons.
The Dallas Cowboys just rewarded Tony Romo with an unbelievable contract extension ($108 million, $55M guaranteed, $25M signing bonus). That’s for a guy that has led his team exactly nowhere and was on the verge of losing his second head coach under his leadership of the team.
I wrote before last season that if the Cowboys had another year of futility, it should be Romo’s last season in Dallas. They struggled again yet gave him one of the richest extensions in history, mainly because Jerry Jones did not do his due diligence to develop another young QB like they had in Romo behind Drew Bledsoe under Bill Parcells,. That left Jones without options and now they have mortgaged their future against a good regular season QB who can’t seem to lead them to anything that matters.
I don’t want to see the Bucs make that decision with Freeman because they don’t have the foresight to develop the depth of their roster at the most important position.
Of this year’s group, I came away most impressed by Oklahoma’s Landry Jones. He has the best mechanics and pro-style potential and very well could be available to the Bucs when they should invest in the quarterback position.
Better ball protection was his biggest issue, but he owns the best balance in the draft and can learn to throw the ball away a little bit better and work on his pocket movement as well. He has a lot of starting experience and he fits the Bucs’ style better than the rest of this year’s hopeful signal-callers.
Florida State’s EJ Manuel would probably be my next choice based on potential upside. I would probably bore JoeBucsFan readers with analysis of his spotty and inconsistent mechanics and what he should do to improve them, but Manuel is big, mobile and also has an awful lot of experience on his resume.
Freeman has 108 million reasons to hope he can take a couple of steps up and lead the Bucs into the playoffs in 2013, –while he keeps Landry Jones on the bench learning the ropes of the NFL game all season long.