As draft day approaches the increased speculation of whom the Bengals select with the fourth overall pick increases. Will it be Blaine Gabbert? Cam Newton? Maybe wide receiver A.J. Green? Or even Julio Jones? Do they select a quarterback not named Newton or Gabbert? None of the above? Only time will tell what direction the Bengals decide to head in.
A factor that might dictate the path that the Bengals follow will be the end result of the Carson Palmer saga. If they are able to trade him for a future draft pick or two then acquire another veteran quarterback then do they decide that a quarterback is the still a need in the first round?
One interesting theory was presented by Carlos Holmes in Big C scouting the Bengals: QB Tyrod Taylor worth a look suggesting that the Bengals might look into selecting Virginia Tech quarterback Tyrod Taylor at some point during the draft.When taking a deeper look at Taylor I’ve come to realize that he is an intriguing athlete. He doesn’t have the ideal size for a quarterback standing at 6-1' and weighing 217 pounds, but his athleticism is what sets him apart from some of the other more glamorized prospects. During the combine he ran a 4.47 for the 40-yard dash and demonstrated his arm strength by slinging missiles to all of his targets. Taylor has the ability to make plays with his legs which has overshadowed his passing capabilities. This has caused some rumbling from scouts that he might only be suited for gadget passes and might be better suited for another position.
"The aggravating part of this process is hearing people in the media trying to move me around to play other positions," Taylor said. "That’s not what I’m hearing from most coaches. The things that the media have made up during this process are exactly that, made up. But I have fought through that and ready to get on a team and play. I have no doubt that I can be successful playing quarterback at the next level."
While at Virginia Tech Taylor passed for 7,017 yards, 44 touchdowns, and he even ran for 2,187 yards with 23 touchdowns. Overall those are some very intriguing stats and might draw some comparisons to Michael Vick, a quarterback who was a play maker with his arm and legs.
If the Bengals were to draft Taylor at some point during the draft then Bengals quarterbacks coach Ken Zampese would certainly have his work cut out for him, but Zampese is one of the top coaches in the league when it comes to developing players.
Taylor displays a mobility that allows him to elude the pass rush and to create a play when it looks like a dead end situation. Also he has a strong ability to throw on the run and is capable of keeping his composure under pressure. His willingness to learn and become acclimated with the league is another aspect that is intriguing. Most of the time young athletes want to be on the field immediately and believe they should be, but not Taylor.
"I have no problem sitting behind a quarterback for a few years and learning the system," he said. "I think that’s the best thing to do coming into the league is learn from a guy who has been there. It’s kind of like a redshirt year in college. On the other hand, I don’t have a problem learning on the go and getting the opportunity to play."
One thing that Taylor must improve upon if he wants to survive the brutality of professional football is his consistency. In college he only completed only 57.2 percent of his passes. A completion percentage that low will only carry him a short time, if that.
When draft day comes the Bengals will have many decisions ahead of them on who to draft. The biggest factor into which quarterback to draft will be when there is a resolution to the Palmer debacle. If the Bengals draft Tyrod Taylor then he could be the type of quarterback that the Bengals could develop and mold into the new leader of the offense.