This offseason we will count down various topics from Monday through Friday, bringing you the top five of the important and definitely some not so important issues in college football. It's the Doc Five, every week until we will thankfully have actual games to discuss.
PLAYERS WITH THE MOST TO LOSE OR GAIN BEFORE 2014 DRAFT
NO. 1, TEDDY BRIDGEWATER
There was a lesson to be learned from the draft class of 2013. Quarterbacks are in the most danger of being over-scrutinized in the draft process and having their draft stock drop like a rock.
Tyler Wilson was once predicted as the first pick of the 2013 draft. Matt Barkley was also predicted by some to be the first pick in the 2013 draft. Landry Jones hurt his stock more than he helped it the more college games he played. They all dropped to the fourth round. NFL teams aren't much different than everyone else. The quarterback will always get too much credit for wins, and too much blame for losses.
Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater is the hot pick to be the first quarterback taken in the 2014 draft. Now comes the hard part: Holding onto that distinction while the NFL scouts search every bit of film for flaws.
Bridgewater hasn't shown too many flaws yet. He has good size. His performance with a seriously sprained ankle and broken wrist against Rutgers last year was legendary, proving he has the toughness to play in the NFL. The Cardinals and Bridgewater likely don't have a chance to have their impressive performance against Florida in the Sugar Bowl without him playing through injury at Rutgers.
Bridgewater isn't a running quarterback but has a great knack for moving in the pocket to buy enough time to throw. And his throws are accurate and strong. At the moment, there's no reason to believe Bridgewater won't be the first quarterback taken next year.
Ah, but a year ago Barkley, Wilson and Jones probably didn't figure coming back for another year would push them to the fourth round. Barkley and Wilson each had reason to believe before their final season that they had a good chance to be the first pick of the draft, the same way Bridgewater might believe that now.
There are quarterbacks who could end up moving ahead of Bridgewater. If all the eligible players come out, Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel, Alabama's A.J. McCarron, Clemson's Tajh Boyd, Stanford's Kevin Hogan, San Jose State's David Fales, Georgia's Aaron Murray, Fresno State's Derek Carr and Oregon's Marcus Mariota make up a really impressive group.
There will be a lot of competition for that top spot among quarterbacks. And no matter how good Jadeveon Clowney is, if a quarterback-needy team gets the first overall pick it will be tough for them to pass on the top player at the most important position.
Bridgewater looks like he is in line to be that top quarterback on the board. NFL.com's Bucky Brooks already listed Bridgewater ahead of Clowney in his players to watch for the 2014 draft. A lot can change over the course of a season, however, especially for quarterbacks.
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