Everyone wanted Miami to select Brady Quinn and let him be this team's franchise quarterback. They didn't. Everyone thought that the Dolphins missed their opportunity to get their franchise QB, the piece of the puzzle this team has missed since Dan Marino retired. They didn't.
Instead, the drafted exactly who they wanted to be this team's franchise quarterback. He didn't play at an over-hyped college and didn't get overhyped himself by the media leading up to the draft. And we, as Dolphin fans, should be happy about that. GM Randy Mueller:
This could explain why the Dolphins, while trading text messages with John Beck towards the mid to late 1st round, were also looking to trade up in the draft to select Beck. It's been reported that Mueller tried as many as 3 times to move up into the late 1st round to secure Beck but with no luck.
However, luck was shining on the Dolphins on that fateful Saturday. When Miami's 2nd round pick (#40 overall) came up, their man was still on the board. John Beck was selected as the Miami Dolphins' franchise quarterback. Like many of you, I questioned the decision. However, after reading up on him and listening to him talk, I don't see how you can not be a huge John Beck fan already!
So let's talk a little bit about him, shall we? Here's part of the scouting report on Beck from NFL.com:
Of course, everyone wants to talk about how he doesn't have good arm strength. And even though it says right in the above scouting report that "Beck's tosses show good zip," people still question him. And you can tell this gets under hi skin. The media has been continually asking him about it. And his response is usually along the lines of, "You can call up my receivers at BYU and ask them about my arm strength." He says that he could "gun it in there" anytime he wants but that he was taught if you don't have to gun it, then don't. It's easier to catch and more accurate if you don't throw rockets when you don't have to. There are also reports that he as thrown the ball from the 45 yard line from his knees through the uprights. Sounds good to me. But if you want facts to back this up, here you go. First, at the combine, John Beck's ball speed was a tremendous 61.1 mph, according to this USA Today article. That was second best among all QBs who threw at the Combine (Russell and Quinn did not throw). Compare that to Drew Stanton's 55.7 or Trent Edwards' 55.2. Oh, and last year when Jay Cutler "wowed" everybody with his arm, he threw it just over 60 mph. Beck out-gunned Cutler. If that isn't enough, I offer you this video:
So, case closed on that arm strength issue that so many people want to talk about.
Next, people criticize the fact that he didn't play elite competition at BYU. It's true that he didn't play elite competition all the time, but he did have many big games against very good teams. Here are a few of them over the past 2 seasons at BYU. I chose to look at 3 games in each season. In 2005, he played at Notre Dame (end of season rank #9 in AP and #11 in Coaches), home against TCU (end of season rank #11 in AP and #9 in Coaches), and their Bowl Game against Cal (ranked #25 in both polls). In 2006, BYU played at TCU, whose defense was ranked in the top 10 in the country. Oh, and in that game, Beck played with 2 sprained ankles that both had to be taped up. See the video below to watch highlights from that game. BYU also played at Boston College (finished season ranked #20 in both polls) and a Bowl Game against Oregon. Here are his stats in these games:
|2005 vs TCU
|L 51-50 (OT)
|2005 at ND
|2005 vs Cal
|2006 at BC
|L 30-23 (OT)
|2006 at TCU*
|2006 vs Ore
Here's the 2006 video of BYU vs TCU with Beck playing with 2 sprained, taped ankles:
And if you still need more convincing that Beck really does have the makings of a franchise quarterback, all you need to do is listen to him talk. The following is a transcript from the end of an interview Beck did with Joe Rose of 790 The Ticket on Monday morning after being drafted. You can listen to the whole thing at their website, but here's the very end:
I also made a comment yesterday about Dan Marino; how I can remember as a kid and through junior high watching him play; seeing a fire in his eyes. That fire was just a competitor wanting to win more than anything. And when I put that Dolphins uniform on, I want to have that fire in my eyes. I'm going to do anything I can to find a way to win.
Rose: Wow, I'll tell you, I'll play with you right now. Let's go out there and line up, kid. I'm ready to go. Hey, I promise you, John, I will never call you at home again and thank you so much for being with us this morning.
Beck: It was my pleasure. And you know what? If you do need to call me, go ahead and give me a call. I'm a Dolphin.
I can't wait to see this guy in action. Something tells me that Cameron and Mueller found a special player who is going to give us Dolphin fans something to cheer about for a long time!!