I’ve heard many people say that the NFL stands for “Not for Long”, alluding the short careers of players (even by professional athlete standards), as well as the fact that what works today, might not work tomorrow. So while MVP quarterbacks like Drew Brees, Tom Brady, and Peyton Manning still set the bar extremely high, if you believe the mantra “not for long”, it stands to reason that the position is ripe for change.
For many years, the quarterbacks who could stand tall in the pocket and throw the ball downfield seemed to see the most success. Then the occasional dual threat quarterback would come along – one who could beat you with their arm as well as their legs, but not only were they few and far between, but they rarely proved to be effective at beating you both ways.
Last year, the league got great representation from a group of quarterbacks; most of them rookies or in their second season and the fans had no choice but to take notice. No longer is a dual threat quarterback a rarity, it is seemingly becoming the league norm. Quarterbacks who can run as well as pass, give the offense much more versatility and the opposing defenses nightmares.
Three out of the four top rookie quarterbacks from 2012 are above average runners and passers. Russell Wilson, Robert Griffin III, and Colin Kaepernick all had amazing years, and are possibly revolutionizing the position. GM’s from around the league are taking notice and it doesn’t seem like too big of a stretch to think that by the end of the decade, pocket quarterbacks will be an endangered species.
Only time will tell, whether or not a mobile quarterback will be able to maintain their effectiveness while taking hit after hit after hit (see Michael Vick), but teams who have been perennially sub-par, might consider taking a chance on two or three years of greatness by drafting a dynamic quarterback. Instead of stifling that type of play, coordinators and offensive coaches might instead foster the exciting style of play, leading to a league-wide revolution.