This draft class seems to be filled with quarterbacks teams aren’t quite sure about. Mitch Trubisky coming out of North Carolina is one of them, with the Arizona Cardinals, New York Jets, Cleveland Browns and Kansas City Chiefs especially intrigued.
Trubisky started only in his final season for the Tar Heels, but that one year was enough to get plenty of attention from scouts, posting strong numbers (3748 yards, 30 touchdown passes, 6 interceptions) while completing 68% of his passes in a system that was perfect for his skills. He has good arm strength and excellent mobility. The kind of quarterback that impresses coaches with his physical attributes and potential, but it seems that his mechanics and especially his ability to read plays before and during the action will be the thing that needs the most work.
Bruce Arians, the Cardinals coach, is excited about Trubisky, but said he has his doubts. If Trubisky is so talented, how come he started just one year in college? The Cardinals are very interested in grooming a young playmaker behind Carson Palmer, who doesn’t have a lot left in the tank. But is Trubisky the right choice? It might be, but it also depends on how much patience a team has to develop him.
Both the Jets and Browns present options for Trubisky to start right away, although that isn’t very likely to happen. It makes more sense to add him to their long list of quarterbacks they’re not sure of, and see what comes out. There’s no real plan for these teams at quarterback with how things progressed for them last season, so it’s all about trying someone from the draft and hoping he becomes someone who can start for them for more than one season before things fall apart.
The Chiefs, like the Cardinals, are looking at someone they hope to develop behind Alex Smith so he can take over, although Smith doesn’t seem to be as almost-washed-up as Palmer is. But Smith has limitations which the Chiefs are aware of, and all it’s going to take is one bad season (which hasn’t really happened since Andy Reid took over) for the fans and others to call for Smith’s backup to take over. The Chiefs are hoping Trubisky could be it.
It’s hard to gauge where Trubisky gets picked. If a team like the Browns is really hot & heavy for him, he could end up being picked early in the first round, but Trubisky dropping a little bit, maybe as far as the second round, makes a lot more sense, considering he’s a very risky pick. The Philadelphia Eagles took a chance on Carson Wentz last season and he showed he has a lot to work on before becoming someone who can play well for 16 games. Trubisky, who is compared to Andy Dalton in that he can become a reliable NFL starter at the least, is probably a year or two of work behind the scenes before he can start.