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If you're a real NFL GM, who would you rather have: Trevor Lawrence on a rookie deal or Deshaun Watson on his current deal?


If you're a real NFL GM, who would you rather have: Trevor Lawrence on a rookie deal or Deshaun Watson on his current deal?  

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Gotta say, if I ink you to a 4 year/$156 million contract, I don't think you get to tell me what to do with the management of my team. Just do your job.

Big strike against Watson with his chirping lately.

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Obviously a lot depends on the situation.  Are you a contender?.... Watson.   Are you a couple years away?.... Lawrence. Overall I go Lawrence.  Once in a generation type player, and that extra cap

1000000% Watson 

I went with Watson, but I think it's a close call.  We know with certainty that Watson is extremely good.  It would be nice to have an extremely good QB on a rookie contract, but there's no guarantee

13 minutes ago, IHEARTFF said:

The difference is that Watson already is what they hope Lawrence becomes. 

I think the hope is Lawrence is even better, and I think he will be. 

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Just now, Capella said:

I think the hope is Lawrence is even better, and I think he will be. 

I mean I guess but I imagine Jax would absolutely thrilled if Lawrence led the league in passing yards at 70% with high TD% and only 7 INT running for 28/game at age 25. That’s mvp type stuff. 

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2 hours ago, IHEARTFF said:

The difference is that Watson already is what they hope Lawrence becomes. 

This. And listen I love Lawrence. Great head no his shoulders, he's not lazy, he will be a very good QB. But Watson is elite right now. And he's had very little stability in the offense. I think we've not seen his best football yet. 

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When it comes to QB, a bird in the hand, and all that.

A franchise QB is the single most important thing in the NFL.  I'm not willing to risk missing out on that to try and save $40 million against the cap.

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Depends on whether I have a good owner who is willing to pay what it takes to surround that QB with talent.

If yes, I take Lawrence.

If no, I take Watson and take my chances on some short-term magic-in-a-bottle.

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It SHOULD be Watson but that’s the wrong answer with the current CBA. Eventually GM’s are going to get the memo that they have to make some QB’s dispensable to build a functioning roster.

1) It’s a 53 man roster. You can’t have one position dictating the coaching staff, draft room and play calling. Yes, there will be special exceptions like Mahomes. Watson couldn’t carry the team this year despite his abilities (and I get they took shipped away Hopkins but he didn’t make Arizona a playoff team either). That means his salary may or may not be justified. I don’t think he’s Mahomes, Manning or Brady level guy. Probably a step below. 

2) You can’t restrict your ability to build a team around him. I suppose the ideal situation is Jacksonville with the massive amount of cap space and a lot of picks. Watson would look nice there but I think you would still hamstring yourself when you essentially get a consensus Andrew Luck level prospect on a super cheap four year deal. You can pile the talent up around him. 

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3 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

Anyone have the numbers the past 20 years on which super bowl winning QBs were on rookie deals?  

Somebody did this recently but off the top of my head...

 

Roethlisberger

Wilson 

Mahomes (he signed his deal after the SB, right?)

 

ETA- I cheated and briefly looked at the past winners of the SB...

 

 

I think Flacco was on rookie deal as well as Wentz.

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37 minutes ago, STEADYMOBBIN 22 said:

Somebody did this recently but off the top of my head...

 

Roethlisberger

Wilson 

Mahomes (he signed his deal after the SB, right?)

 

ETA- I cheated and briefly looked at the past winners of the SB...

 

 

I think Flacco was on rookie deal as well as Wentz.

So I guess that is 25%??

Meaning 75% of the time a QB on a big money deal wins the super bowl.

I take the guy I KNOW is great over the rookie.

However, if you dont feel Watson is that type of guy then I would understand not going that route for him specifically.  

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4 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

Anyone have the numbers the past 20 years on which super bowl winning QBs were on rookie deals?  

It's more important to look over the time since the recent CBA, because top rookie picks like the Sam Bradfords, Staffords, and Matt Ryans were making franchise money on draft day.

This recent era will also be skewed with Brady being in the SB so frequently and Tom always leaving money on the table. But lets look at the past 3 seasons. 2019 rookie deal Mahomes was in the SB. 2018 rookie deal Goff was in the SB. 2017 rookie deal MVP candidate Wentz got hurt late in the season and inexpensive Foles went the rest of the way. 

Recent history suggests you either want a cheap QB, or you want Tom Brady (cheap QB). 

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46 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

So I guess that is 25%??

Meaning 75% of the time a QB on a big money deal wins the super bowl.

I take the guy I KNOW is great over the rookie.

However, if you dont feel Watson is that type of guy then I would understand not going that route for him specifically.  

it's not just about rookie deals.  brady was consistently under-market, which should also be considered.

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I voted Lawrence.  A rookie contract for 5 years plus the franchise tag years or a chance for an extension.  You're talking 6 - 8 years of control and you can still cut bait if he just doesn't have it..  I suspect even poorly run NFL franchises can trust their scouting on a guy like Lawrence.  We all know Watson is really good and there's value in that knowledge but he's already getting paid.  He's also only under contract for 5 years at already high salaries after the first couple years.    

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48 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

So I guess that is 25%??

Meaning 75% of the time a QB on a big money deal wins the super bowl.

I take the guy I KNOW is great over the rookie.

However, if you dont feel Watson is that type of guy then I would understand not going that route for him specifically.  

QB as % of salary cap: Super Bowl Titles and High Salary Quarterbacks | Over the Cap

Since then you've got Brady 3 times on under-market, Wentz/Foles on rookie/backup, Mahomes on rookie, and Manning at about 11% in 2015.

 

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5 minutes ago, dwarfboy said:

I voted Lawrence.  A rookie contract for 5 years plus the franchise tag years or a chance for an extension. 

This is common misconception I'm seeing floated around here.

Trevor's 5th year, the 2025 season, will cost more then Watson's $32M he's due that season.

The difference in their contracts year one is likely less then $4M.

The savings on Lawrence over Watson are almost all in a 3 year window from 22-24 and those savings are about $24-25M a year.

If saving on cap space to win during Trevor's rookie contract is the goal you got Lawrence's second thru end of 4th season to pull that off, a 3 year window.

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4 minutes ago, menobrown said:

This is common misconception I'm seeing floated around here.

Trevor's 5th year, the 2025 season, will cost more then Watson's $32M he's due that season.

The difference in their contracts year one is likely less then $4M.

The savings on Lawrence over Watson are almost all in a 3 year window from 22-24 and those savings are about $24-25M a year.

If saving on cap space to win during Trevor's rookie contract is the goal you got Lawrence's second thru end of 4th season to pull that off, a 3 year window.

Almost typed something similar yesterday. This also assumes Lawrence is a stud and then doesn’t get extended early after year 3, which is becoming very common with stud young QB’s. Watson and Mahomes were just extended after year 3, there is chatter that Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen will sign massive extensions this off-season after year 3 as well.

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5 minutes ago, Buckna said:

Almost typed something similar yesterday. This also assumes Lawrence is a stud and then doesn’t get extended early after year 3, which is becoming very common with stud young QB’s. Watson and Mahomes were just extended after year 3, there is chatter that Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen will sign massive extensions this off-season after year 3 as well.

The extension won’t impact the year 4 cap hit though.

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16 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Gotta say, if I ink you to a 4 year/$156 million contract, I don't think you get to tell me what to do with the management of my team. Just do your job.

Big strike against Watson with his chirping lately.

If a major part of your job was to win games, I think he has a right to some beef with what Houston has done the last two seasons. And how much "chirping" has he actually done. It seems the same story just keeps getting repeated over and over.

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5 minutes ago, Concept Coop said:

The extension won’t impact the year 4 cap hit though.

Depends on how they structure it, at the very least any signing bonus would start to get pro-rated in year 4. For Mahomes it was only an extra $2M in year 4 against the cap, for Watson it was $5.4M.

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1 hour ago, ghostguy123 said:

 

Meaning 75% of the time a QB on a big money deal wins the super bowl.

 

A big part of that 75% is Brady who generally took a discount of his contract - which he could afford being married to Giselle. 

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8 minutes ago, Dr. Octopus said:

A big part of that 75% is Brady who generally took a discount of his contract - which he could afford being married to Giselle. 

I thought our more prominent Boston fans on the board had debunked the discount stuff? Brady had often agreed to restructure was my understanding lowering his cap #, but it’s not like he was leaving tens of millions on the table like the difference between a rookie QB contract and a veteran.

I easily concede I could be wrong on this but I remember a lot of back and forth in threads about whether Brady was really making some big $$$ sacrifice for the team when these media articles came out.

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5 hours ago, Iceman03 said:

It SHOULD be Watson but that’s the wrong answer with the current CBA. Eventually GM’s are going to get the memo that they have to make some QB’s dispensable to build a functioning roster.

1) It’s a 53 man roster. You can’t have one position dictating the coaching staff, draft room and play calling. Yes, there will be special exceptions like Mahomes. Watson couldn’t carry the team this year despite his abilities (and I get they took shipped away Hopkins but he didn’t make Arizona a playoff team either). That means his salary may or may not be justified. I don’t think he’s Mahomes, Manning or Brady level guy. Probably a step below. 

2) You can’t restrict your ability to build a team around him. I suppose the ideal situation is Jacksonville with the massive amount of cap space and a lot of picks. Watson would look nice there but I think you would still hamstring yourself when you essentially get a consensus Andrew Luck level prospect on a super cheap four year deal. You can pile the talent up around him. 


Get the memo? This philosophy has been said ad nauseam since Seattle won with Russ.


I don’t see the same things you guys seeing Watson.

I vote neither. 
 

Trade the first pick for a haul of picks. Build a team with a strong OL/DL, focus on defense and special teams. 

Offense stays run first, ground control.

This keeps you from ever having to pay the skill positions. Specifically the QB. 
 

 

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2 minutes ago, Buckna said:

I thought our more prominent Boston fans on the board had debunked the discount stuff? Brady had often agreed to restructure was my understanding lowering his cap #, but it’s not like he was leaving tens of millions on the table like the difference between a rookie QB contract and a veteran.

I easily concede I could be wrong on this but I remember a lot of back and forth in threads about whether Brady was really making some big $$$ sacrifice for the team when these media articles came out.

I don't remember his ever being the highest paid QB in the league. I don't believe anyone is saying he played way below market or anything but it's been pretty widely reported he's given a hometown discount. Maybe that's misrepresented though.

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I don't think guys like Foles, Flacco, and maybe even early career Russ really make the case for Lawrence here.

The whole "idea" people have here is getting elite QB play at rookie contract money.  But the Eagles, Ravens, Seahawks were just really good teams that could get by on modest QB play.  Really that makes more of a case for "ignore QB, just get someone mediocre or a game manager and build your team elsewhere" than it does for "get an elite QB on a rookie deal".

Really the only guy that's won a Super Bowl on truly elite QB play alongside modest rookie pay is Mahomes, and his new contract doesn't seem to be slowing down KC at all as they are having their best year ever now.

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2 minutes ago, Dr. Octopus said:

I don't remember his ever being the highest paid QB in the league. I don't believe anyone is saying he played way below market or anything but it's been pretty widely reported he's given a hometown discount. Maybe that's misrepresented though.

I don't know myself, but I think that was exactly his argument, that it was misrepresented.

Even if it wasn't though it's not like he was getting underpaid by $25m a year.  A few million less a year still puts him in the expensive QB category, not the rookie QB contract category.  I don't think you can really dismiss him as "eh Brady doesn't count, he took slightly less money" because he was still making a LOT more than a rookie QB contract.

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20 minutes ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I don't think guys like Foles, Flacco, and maybe even early career Russ really make the case for Lawrence here.

The whole "idea" people have here is getting elite QB play at rookie contract money.  But the Eagles, Ravens, Seahawks were just really good teams that could get by on modest QB play.  Really that makes more of a case for "ignore QB, just get someone mediocre or a game manager and build your team elsewhere" than it does for "get an elite QB on a rookie deal".

Really the only guy that's won a Super Bowl on truly elite QB play alongside modest rookie pay is Mahomes, and his new contract doesn't seem to be slowing down KC at all as they are having their best year ever now.


Yes, yes, yes!!!!

OL/Defense- replace the skill guys until you get guys who wanna play for less and win more!

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34 minutes ago, STEADYMOBBIN 22 said:

 


Get the memo? This philosophy has been said ad nauseam since Seattle won with Russ.


I don’t see the same things you guys seeing Watson.

I vote neither. 
 

Trade the first pick for a haul of picks. Build a team with a strong OL/DL, focus on defense and special teams. 

Offense stays run first, ground control.

This keeps you from ever having to pay the skill positions. Specifically the QB. 
 

 

bold strategy cotton, lets see if it pays off for him.

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28 minutes ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I don't think guys like Foles, Flacco, and maybe even early career Russ really make the case for Lawrence here.

The whole "idea" people have here is getting elite QB play at rookie contract money.  But the Eagles, Ravens, Seahawks were just really good teams that could get by on modest QB play.  Really that makes more of a case for "ignore QB, just get someone mediocre or a game manager and build your team elsewhere" than it does for "get an elite QB on a rookie deal".

Really the only guy that's won a Super Bowl on truly elite QB play alongside modest rookie pay is Mahomes, and his new contract doesn't seem to be slowing down KC at all as they are having their best year ever now.

Joe Flacco's 2012

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56 minutes ago, Dr. Octopus said:

If a major part of your job was to win games, I think he has a right to some beef with what Houston has done the last two seasons. And how much "chirping" has he actually done. It seems the same story just keeps getting repeated over and over.

Yes, I should have said "alleged" chirping. 

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A good exercise is to look at Super Bowl winning QB pay relative to playoff performance. Let's see:

2019: Mahomes (rookie deal, strong play)

2018: Tom Brady (underpaid, solid pay)

2017: Nick Foles (underpaid, strong play)

2016: Tom Brady (underpaid, strong play)

2015: Peyton Manning (elite pay, poor play)

2014: Tom Brady (underpaid, strong play)

2013: Russell Wilson (rookie deal, solid play)

2012: Joe Flacco (rookie deal, strong play)

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11 minutes ago, Edgar said:

Joe Flacco's 2012

Flacco in 2012 threw for 3800 yards with 22 TDs and 10 INTs.

He happened to get hot for a 4 game stretch in the playoffs but he wasn't an elite QB.  Lots of mediocre QBs have played great 4 game stretches before.

He's not really applicable to what people are talking about with Lawrence, hoping to get an elite top 3 QB on a cheap deal.  Flacco is more applicable to someone saying a team should just pay a modest amount for Ryan Fitzpatrick or Alex Smith and hope he happens to get hot at the right time, while building a strong team elsewhere.

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45 minutes ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I don't think guys like Foles, Flacco, and maybe even early career Russ really make the case for Lawrence here.

The whole "idea" people have here is getting elite QB play at rookie contract money.  But the Eagles, Ravens, Seahawks were just really good teams that could get by on modest QB play.  Really that makes more of a case for "ignore QB, just get someone mediocre or a game manager and build your team elsewhere" than it does for "get an elite QB on a rookie deal".

Really the only guy that's won a Super Bowl on truly elite QB play alongside modest rookie pay is Mahomes, and his new contract doesn't seem to be slowing down KC at all as they are having their best year ever now.

Mahomes’ cap hit was only ~6M this year. 

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11 minutes ago, FreeBaGeL said:

Flacco in 2012 threw for 3800 yards with 22 TDs and 10 INTs.

He happened to get hot for a 4 game stretch in the playoffs but he wasn't an elite QB.  Lots of mediocre QBs have played great 4 game stretches before.

He's not really applicable to what people are talking about with Lawrence, hoping to get an elite top 3 QB on a cheap deal.  Flacco is more applicable to someone saying a team should just pay a modest amount for Ryan Fitzpatrick or Alex Smith and hope he happens to get hot at the right time, while building a strong team elsewhere.

It's less about having elite play on a rookie deal, it's more about never paying a QB elite money.

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2 hours ago, Concept Coop said:

Lawrence pretty easily. That’s a lot of money to invest elsewhere on your roster. It’s essentially Lawrence and any non-QB on the market, with some change leftover. 

I think I will go with a guaranteed top end QB over Lawrence and any other player.  

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18 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Gotta say, if I ink you to a 4 year/$156 million contract, I don't think you get to tell me what to do with the management of my team. Just do your job.

Big strike against Watson with his chirping lately.

I disagree with your vibration on this post however...I am honestly wondering why we are even having Watson discussions just because he won't answer the phone, is that all you have to do to get out of an NFL team?

So what he doesn't answer his phone if I own the Texans, I cannot understand why this trade needs to happen suddenly in the next couple of days...how about a 2 week cooling off period?  

-Also I find your last sentence pretty heinous. You are comparing Watson to a bird or a bird brain by saying that he chirps, pretty derogatory and it's obvious you feel money trumps all feeling and emotions that Watson might have. 

-And when you pay someone $156M you empower them to speak up

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28 minutes ago, Ministry of Pain said:

 

-Also I find your last sentence pretty heinous. You are comparing Watson to a bird or a bird brain by saying that he chirps, pretty derogatory and it's obvious you feel money trumps all feeling and emotions that Watson might have. 

Please, please tell me you're joking with this.

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13 minutes ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Please, please tell me you're joking with this.

You said he chirps and that's not a compliment. Good leaders speak out and call notice to things that are not right, that's what Watson is doing, He's NOT CHIRPING! Why would you want to shut him up? What right do you have to say that a player should just take his money and not chirp? 

You couldn't be more wrong in your view of Watson. He's not chirping, the Silence was Deafening, ever hear that one? That's what Watson is doing, he's not some little sparrow chirping on the fence. 

Watson is one of the Top5 QBs in the NFL IMHO and I think he also is a very intelligent player that just produced 88% of his team's entire offense, not sure that has ever been done before and between all that chirping he does according to you. 

:boxing:

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3 minutes ago, Ministry of Pain said:

You said he chirps and that's not a compliment. Good leaders speak out and call notice to things that are not right, that's what Watson is doing, He's NOT CHIRPING! Why would you want to shut him up? What right do you have to say that a player should just take his money and not chirp? 

You couldn't be more wrong in your view of Watson. He's not chirping, the Silence was Deafening, ever hear that one? That's what Watson is doing, he's not some little sparrow chirping on the fence. 

Watson is one of the Top5 QBs in the NFL IMHO and I think he also is a very intelligent player that just produced 88% of his team's entire offense, not sure that has ever been done before and between all that chirping he does according to you. 

:boxing:

You're a weirdo.

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49 minutes ago, Ministry of Pain said:

-Also I find your last sentence pretty heinous. You are comparing Watson to a bird or a bird brain by saying that he chirps, pretty derogatory and it's obvious you feel money trumps all feeling and emotions that Watson might have. 

Is this real?

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20 hours ago, ffmail4me said:

Leaf, Shuler, Manziel, Russell, Leinart, Vince Young, David Carr, Jeff George....need I go on? Why would anyone prefer ANY rookie over a proven young all pro QB?? 

LOL at comparing these guys to Lawrence.  Lawrence is a generational talent without any baggage. 

For me it was close but I did side with Lawrence plus the additional cap space.  But I can side with Watson if QB was the only piece needed to immediately contend and that team could fit Watson under the cap.

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1 hour ago, Edgar said:

A good exercise is to look at Super Bowl winning QB pay relative to playoff performance. Let's see:

2019: Mahomes (rookie deal, strong play)

2018: Tom Brady (underpaid, solid pay)

2017: Nick Foles (underpaid, strong play)

2016: Tom Brady (underpaid, strong play)

2015: Peyton Manning (elite pay, poor play)

2014: Tom Brady (underpaid, strong play)

2013: Russell Wilson (rookie deal, solid play)

2012: Joe Flacco (rookie deal, strong play)

I will add that of the 16 starting QB's for the team that made the Super Bowl during those 8 years (and I am counting Wentz as the starting QB for the Eagles since that is what he was until he was hurt, and the Eagles probably don't make the Super Bowl if Foles were QB the whole season), 7 were on their rookie deal, 4 were Tom Brady on his below market salary, and 5 were experienced QB's on market value contracts. So 11 out of 16 (68%) were either on rookie or discounted contracts.

I actually voted for Deshaun because he is a known quantity. He has shown that he can perform well with JAGS at WR (Coutee/Hanson having 100 yard games when Cooks was out) and he has learned how to avoid the big hit since he got his ribs broken against the Cowboys in his first full year in 2018. He throws such a nice deep ball. As for him allegedly chirping, every thing being reported is things he is allegedly saying. Whether he actually said them is unknown. Also Cal McNair is showing himself to be an incompetent owner and the players are starting to pick up on that which is why the atmosphere around the Texans right now is just horrendous.

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20 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Gotta say, if I ink you to a 4 year/$156 million contract,

Just do your job.

Big strike against Watson with his chirping lately.

You kind of glossed over the 88% of the total offense he accounted for, nobody else anywhere close to that as far as I know, what part of the job didn't he do Andy?

Watson did his job to the absolute best some may have ever seen this season and they still went 4-12, maybe you could take a half step back from being irate with Watson because he isn't a robot and speaks up for himself and the team.

The fact that Watson is in the position he is in right now is a total indictment of the Houston Texans franchise and why they won't be competing for a title anytime soon. I think the Texans are the one who are chirping not Watson. 

Now would you like to retract any part of your statements from earlier? 

BTW I love you Andy and the energy/humor you bring in here. I am going overboard to prove a point and I feel you can handle me. 

;)

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2 minutes ago, Ministry of Pain said:

Now would you like to retract any part of your statements from earlier? 

Since I already amended it earlier, no.

He can be disappointed and upset at the direction the franchise is going, sure. But if he thinks he has a right in the say so of who coaches or GM's the team...he's out of bounds.

Now quit your squawking and go hen peck someone else.

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On 1/18/2021 at 8:25 AM, farfromforgotten said:

Love Watson but went with Lawrence. Having a young, talented QB on a rookie contract can be a stepping stone to turning a franchise around. On the other hand having Watson can turn a good team into a Super Bowl contender. 

I don't think Watson is going anywhere so his career will be mostly "wasted" in Houston. 

Yes, and in some cases that Young/Talented QB is David Carr, Jamarcus Russell, Sam Bradford, Jameis Winston or Jared Goff - and sets the team's QB position back for years. That risk has to be part of the equation.

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47 minutes ago, BigJim® said:

Yes, and in some cases that Young/Talented QB is David Carr, Jamarcus Russell, Sam Bradford, Jameis Winston or Jared Goff - and sets the team's QB position back for years. That risk has to be part of the equation.

Of course it's part of the equation.  But he could also be Elway, Manning or Luck which his scouting reports indicate he's closer to than the busts you and a few others have mentioned.  If this is a normal year than I think 95% or more would be on the Watson side of this, including me but Lawrence is a talent that only seemingly comes around once per decade.  I'll take that chance.  I'm expecting a Herbert type season for Lawrence next year and I wouldn't trade Herbert for Watson straight up either.  

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1 minute ago, Pipes said:

Of course it's part of the equation.  But he could also be Elway, Manning or Luck which his scouting reports indicate he's closer to than the busts you and a few others have mentioned.  If this is a normal year than I think 95% or more would be on the Watson side of this, including me but Lawrence is a talent that only seemingly comes around once per decade.  I'll take that chance.  I'm expecting a Herbert type season for Lawrence next year and I wouldn't trade Herbert for Watson straight up either.  

The only difference is that Herbert has actually done it at the NFL level so the risk is diminished quite a bit so I wouldn't give up Herbert for Watson either.  Lawrence on the other hand has risk.  Scouts are not perfect.  I see the absolute best outcome for Lawrence is to have a year like Herbert.  That is if all goes right for him.  It was a historic rookie QB performance.  The chances of that happening are small which is why Watson would be my choice.  

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1 hour ago, BigJim® said:

Yes, and in some cases that Young/Talented QB is David Carr, Jamarcus Russell, Sam Bradford, Jameis Winston or Jared Goff - and sets the team's QB position back for years. That risk has to be part of the equation.

None of those QBs were considered to be in the same league as a prospect as Lawrence is. This does nothing to change my stance. 

Edit: I worded my 1st post poorly so I get your point. 

Edited by farfromforgotten
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