- Created on Sunday, 26 February 2012 18:49
- Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 07:51
- Written by Travis Pulver
Baylor Bears quarterback and 2011 Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III is more than likely going to be the No 2 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. The St. Louis Rams currently hold that pick, but with Sam Bradford already established as their QB there are a number of teams that could be looking to trade up in order to take Griffin.
With the performance that he turned in at the NFL Combine the asking price may have just gone up.
Some doubters have wondered if the actual Griffin is anything even remotely close to what the hype makes him out to be. Is he really taller than 6-foot? Is he too small? Is he just an incredible athlete that thrived in a college friendly system? Can he be the face of a franchise?
Much of the doubt on Griffin comes due to his rise from relative obscurity to Heisman trophy winner. Griffin was more than ready to take their concerns in stride while at the combine:
“People think that I just came onto the scene this year. So they haven’t had as much time to evaluate me. So I’m just excited to show them who I am as a person.”
While the 2011 season could be considered his breakout season, Griffin has been one of the better quarterbacks in college football since his freshman year at Baylor. He finished the 2008 season ranked No 31 in the nation in total offense, just below USC’s Mark Sanchez and above Tim Tebow and Andy Dalton.
An injury knocked him out for the majority of the 2009 season, but he came back in force in 2010 helping the Bears to the No 13 offense in the nation. On an individual level he ranked No 6 in total offense beating out the likes of Cam Newton, Kellen Moore, Ryan Mallett, and Andrew Luck.
What has kept people from knowing about Griffin was where he played. Baylor has not been known for its football prowess. Prior to last season the last time Baylor ended a season ranked was in 1986; dating back to 1956 it is something they’ve only done on eight occasions. Since the Big 12 formed in 1996 the Bears won one game or less in conference play 11 times.
The lack of exposure has had skeptics doubt everything about Griffin, from his height and weight to his ability to handle the complexities of an NFL offense. He’s been quickly putting all those concerns to rest with a stellar performance at the combine that has included a 4.38 run in the 40-yard dash, fastest time by a quarterback in over a decade.
His overall performance during the interviews as well as skill oriented drills will likely encourage some teams in dire need of help at quarterback to trade up with the Rams to get Griffin. If there evaluation is anything like Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak they’ll do whatever it takes to draft Griffin:
“Athletically, he’s as good as I’ve seen…It looks like he can handle a great deal. His throwing motion is excellent. He makes all the throws: the big throws, the small throws. . . . One thing about that young man, he’ll fit in any scheme he wants to do.”
Any trade deals could of course be impacted if the Colts decide to shock the world and take Griffin instead. Then again, it’s probably safe to say that anyone hoping to trade up for Griffin will not complain if they happen to get Luck instead.