Maybe Mitch Trubisky should not get drafted in the top 10.
How many hot shot college quarterbacks do you recall getting a second chance after flaming out as a high NFL draft pick? There are more who don’t come to mind, such as Mark Sanchez and promising prospect from long ago Ryan Leaf. That’s why I am hoping UNC’s Trubisky ends up with the right team.
The banter about big Mitch has been two-sided as the draft approaches at the end of April. He certainly has the size, at 6-3 and 220 pounds. He has the mental toughness, the accuracy, the arm-strength and the mobility from the pocket. But he only had 13 starts at Carolina after three seasons as a red shirt and a back-up to Marquise Williams.
There is no profession crueler than the NFL, where you rarely get a second chance to make a first impression. Trubisky is high on many so-called experts’ mock draft boards. But if he goes in the top ten, it will likely be to a team that needs him to start right away. The league has been less unforgiving to rookie quarterbacks in recent years, such as Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota, who started from day one and are still hanging in despite missing the playoffs.
Cam Newton was the Panthers’ starter as a rookie and it took him and the team few years to mature into a playoff quarterback. But usually there is more impatience among owners, general managers, coaches and the fans. Trubisky needs to land in a situation where he can get the NFL reps, learn the game at that level and apply his skills and immeasurable potential.
Somewhere like Green Bay or the New York Giants, where he can sit and learn for a few years behind an Aaron Rodgers or Eli Manning. Not somewhere like Cleveland, where he would be seen as the next great savior of the Browns. Not that Trubisky could not do it, but let’s give the former Tar Heel a chance to see the whole field, as they say.
He was right to enter the draft with his graduating class. His stock could not have been any higher playing his senior season with a Carolina team in serious rebuilding mode. Now his timing needs to be just as right at the next level.