Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Russell Wilson vs Robert Griffin III vs Andrew Luck

     The 2012 NFL Draft class produced one of the best group of quarterbacks in recent memory, where an astounding five quarterbacks from this particular draft class started on opening day last season. Three quarterbacks in particular were able to find success within their first season: Russell Wilson, Robert Griffin III, and Andrew Luck. With their second season quickly approaching, we will predict which quarterback will have the best statistical year in 2013.

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins: Robert Griffin III, the 2012 Offensive Rookie of the Year, was clearly the most dominant rookie of the 2012 draft class. RGIII now holds the record for the highest passer rating of any rookie in NFL history (102.4), as he threw for 3,200 yards and 20 touchdowns. One of RGIII's most dangerous qualities is his ability to run; Griffin ran for 815 yards and 7 touchdowns, but his days of escaping the pocket may soon be over. RGIII underwent surgery on January 9th to repair a torn ACL and LCL, and though he will miss all four preseason games, RGIII will likely return by Week 1. Unfortunately for Griffin, head coach Mike Shanahan will certainly limit his quarterback's rushing attempts. RGIII is rather small considering how frequently he runs the ball, so injury will likely follow RGIII until he transforms into a pocket passer. Robert Griffin III has all the qualities needed to be a successful pocket passer, and with offensive weapons such as Pierre Garcon and Fred Davis, RGIII has the potential to be one of the best passing quarterbacks in the league.
2013 Projection: 3,850 yards, 30 touchdowns, 11 interceptions

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts: Entering the 2012 Draft, Andrew Luck was the clear favorite to be picked first overall by the Indianapolis Colts. With a big arm, the ability to evade tacklers, and leadership qualities, it was no surprise Andrew Luck was considered the number one prospect of the 2012 draft class. Andrew Luck was the opening day starter, and his most important accomplishment was an 11-5 record, earning Indianapolis a Wild Card berth. Andrew Luck broke the record for passing yards by a rookie in a single season after throwing for 4,374 yards. Other parts of his game need drastic improvement if he looks to win a Super Bowl with the Colts. Luck's completion percentage stood at just 54.1%, and his 76.5 passer rating put him behind quarterbacks such as Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder. The Indianapolis Colts rely heavily on their offense, and if Andrew Luck turns the ball over 28 times as he did last season, this offense will not get the chance to succeed.
2013 Projection: 4,350 yards, 29 touchdowns, 16 interceptions

Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks: As a rookie, Russell Wilson gradually improved over the course of the season, and by year's end, he challenged RGIII as the league's best offensive rookie. In his final eight regular season games, Wilson passed for 1,652 yards with 16 touchdowns and just two interceptions. By the end of the regular season, Russell Wilson tied Peyton Manning's record for the most passing touchdowns by a rookie (26). Wilson's spectacular play carried over into the playoffs, as he led the Seahawks past Washington in the first round, yet despite passing for 385 yards with two touchdowns in the divisional round, Seattle lost 30-28 to the Atlanta Falcons. Wilson is an intelligent quarterback with great accuracy and impeccable mechanics. Wilson also uses his speed only when necessary, but it would be dangerous for him to consistently run the ball at just 5 feet 11 inches. The Seattle Seahawks traded for wide receiver Percy Harvin in the offseason, but a hip injury will keep Harvin on the sidelines until the playoffs. If Wilson is able to play all 16 games, the Seattle Seahawks will be a serious threat to dethrone San Francisco as the NFC West champion.
2013 Projection: 3,900 yards, 28 touchdowns, 14 interceptions

Bottom Line: Russell Wilson and Robert Griffin III will both have great second seasons, with the advantage going to RGIII if he can stay healthy. As for Andrew Luck, we predict Luck will make great strides in his level of improvement, but he still needs more time to mature. 

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