After having some time to reflect on Al Davis’s decision to draft Terrelle Pryor, I have paid some thought to the pros and cons of the decision, and how they are likely to effect the Raiders in both the short and the long term.
Pryor’s acquisition has received a generally positive reaction from Raider fans, and has predictably been greeted with derision by the haters.
Do they both have a point?
Here is how I would break it down. I will start with the negatives, as I always like to finish on a positive when it comes to my Raiders.
· The Raiders do not have a good track record in drafting quarterbacks and then developing them (Kenny Stabler aside)
· Effect on Jason Campbell. Bruce Gradkowski was let go so as to avoid a quarterback controversy on Oakland as he was a fan favourite. We just generated another one, and I have to think that it will be at the back of Campbell’s mind.
· Pryor is a run first quarterback – They have a poor success rate in the NFL. When they do succeed, they need a lot of time to develop.
· Pryor has inconsistent mechanics. You can’t always fix that.
· It leaves Oakland without a pick rounds 2 through 4 in the 2012 draft, and they have holes to fill on this roster (CB, OLB).
· At a 3rd round pick and about $5 million, this isn’t a huge gamble.
· Pryor has a unique skill set that should if used correctly cause nightmares for defensive coordinator, especially in the red zone. A silver & black Wildcat comes to mind.
· He could contribute in certain situational packages early on, and his addition to an offence already loaded with off the scale speed (McFadden, Ford, Jones, etc) will create opportunities that a coach like Hue Jackson should be able exploit.
· Pryor stepped into the breach at Ohio State when needed, proved he was a winner and consistently did all that was asked of him in high pressure situations.
Lastly, and importantly, I believe that Pryor is a good kid who is totally committed to football.
He has the confidence to see himself as a quarterback, but the commitment to say he would play any position asked of him. I like that.
As ever, time will tell.