Shanahan's draft history: Quarterback

Shanahan's draft history: Quarterback
April 6, 2011, 1:58 pm
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Wednesday, April 6, 2011 7:15 a.m. By Rich Tandler
Redskins Blogger In a few weeks, Mike Shanahan will make a decision that will go a long way towards determining the Washington Redskins course over the next few years when he makes the call to draft a quarterbackor notat some point early in the upcoming NFL draft. Does his history give us confidence that he will get it right in making this critical decision? Shanahan has been the primary talent selector in 14 drafts with the Denver Broncos (1995-2008) and for one with the Redskins (2010). How well has he performed? Over the next few weeks, well break down Shanahans drafts position by position. If the past is prelude, maybe we can learn something about where he might go in the draft that starts on April 28 and how much success the players drafted might have going forward. After examining his offensive line picks last week and running backs yesterday, today we look at quarterbacks. Details of each players draft status are at the bottom of the article. Best pick The relatively brief career of Jay Cutler has seen some ups and downs since Shanahan moved up to draft him with the 11th overall pick in 2006. After being put into the starting lineup for the last five games of his rookie season, Cutler made his way to the Pro Bowl in 2008 by throwing for over 4500 yards. Then came the coaching change, the trade to Chicago and Cutler becoming a turnover machine in 2009, throwing 26 interceptions. After a rocky start last year, the Bears won the NFC North and made the conference title game. That up ended on a down note as Cutler sat out most of the second half and had his toughness questioned. At age 28, there are more chapters to be written in his career. Cutler clearly has talent and we will see how he handles the mental side of it. Good picks Shanahan got some decent production out of Brian Griese. He was put in the unenviable spot of being the guy who replaced the legend when he took over as the starter after John Elway retired following Denvers second straight Super Bowl win in 1998. The Broncos went 27-24 in Grieses 51 starts over four seasons. He made the Pro Bowl following the 2000 season. Worst pick Besides Griese and Cutler, the only other quarterback Shanahan has drafted with a top 100 pick was Jeff Lewis, taken with pick 100 in the fourth round in 1996. Playing behind Elway and Gary Kubiak, Lewis saw very limited action and was released after the 1997 season. That is hardly a disaster but youd like to get a bit more out of a top-100 pick. Bad picks The other three quarterbacks Shanahan has drafted all were taken in the seventh round and they only are listed as bad picks because none of them turned out to be a diamond in the rough. Jarious Jackson (2000), Bradlee Van Pelt (2004) and Matt Mauck (2004) combined to play in 11 NFL games, mostly in mop up duty. The nitty-gritty Total quarterbacks drafted drafted: 6
NFL games played: 184
Seasons as a starter: 9
Pro Bowls: 2Jay Cutler 2008, Brian Griese 2000
Games played, seasons as starter and Pro Bowls are for players career with all teams. RoundsPlayers 1Jay Cutler (11 overall) 2006None1Brian Griese (91) 19981Jeff Lewis (100) 1996NoneNone3Jarious Jackson (214) 2000; Bradlee Van Pelt (250) 2004; Matt Mauck (225) 2004 Shanahans draft history Offensive lineRunning backs Rich Tandler blogs about the Redskins at You can reach him by email at and follow him on Twitter @RealRedskins.