In my view, there are four main routes we can go in 2011:
1. Sign or trade for a starter-level QB. Kolb, Orton, someone along those lines. Either don't draft a QB at all, or don't draft one before the fourth. In this scenario, we seriously attempt to compete in 2011.
2. Bring in a cheaper, placeholder QB, and draft a QB in the first or second. Gabbert, Newton (I'm not saying, I'm just saying), Ponder, Kaepernick, Mallett. In this scenario, we're still competing, but we're ultimately hedging our bets, hoping to limp along until the QB of the Future is ready.
3. Draft a QB in the first or second (more likely the first), and run with them right away. We have a softer schedule next year; the NFC West may be just the mushy goodness that our QB of the Future can safely cut his teeth on. In this scenario, we're not really competing seriously, but you never know--if we can get our D and running game back on track, we might have a chance. This is a "bite the bullet"-type situation, ensuring a better 2012 by partially giving up on 2011.
4. Draft for the whole team, but don't get a QB. Give the job to Jordan or LeFevour, and hope that they magically become starter-ready. (Or, alternately, run the triple-option with a QB/WR hybrid we grab in the fifth, carry four RBs, and utilize Caldwell in multiple ways.) As much as we want both of them to succeed, the bottom line is, this would be not seriously competing, hoping for either a miracle now or Andrew Luck next year. We shouldn't rule out the possibility--after that Marshawn Lynch run, nothing is impossible--but for the most part, this would be a pure rebuilding year, as we tried to get a team that can help our QB of the Future, whoever that is.
I ask you, my fellow Bengals survivors...which would you choose, and why?