San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke got his first NFL job as a scout with the New York Jets. Bill Parcells was head coach and general manager at the time, and has long been viewed as a notable influence on Baalke. I bring this up because the approach of the NFL Draft means it is time to take a look at the "Parcells Rules" when it comes to evaluating quarterback prospects.
ESPN analyst K.C. Joyner put together a rundown of the rules, and how they apply to the 2016 quarterback prospects. Parcells looked at seven criteria in grading quarterbacks for a given draft. Those seven criteria are as follows:
1. Be a three-year starter
2. Be a senior in college
3. Graduate from college
4. Start 30 games
5. Win 23 games
6. Post a 2-1 touchdown-to-interception ratio
7. Tally a completion rate of 60 percent or higher
Joyner pointed out that only ten quarterbacks in the BCS/Power 5 era (includes 1999-2015 NFL Draft) have met all seven criteria. That group includes Drew Brees, Eli Manning, Andrew Luck, Marcus Mariota, Robert Griffin III, Tim Tebow, Byron Leftwich, Chad Pennington, Philip Rivers, and Matt Leinart. Joyner wrote that Parcells said he would include Teddy Bridgewater since he finished his degree when he left early.
In going through the list, Michigan State quarterback Connor Cook tops the list, hitting on six of the categories. The only one he misses on is the completion percentage. His was 57.5 percent. Joyner points out that Cook never even completed 60 percent of his passes in a single season, and he ranked "tied for 82nd out of 89 passer-rating-qualified Power 5 quarterbacks in percentage of off-target passes during the course of the 2013-15 college campaigns (14.5 percent)."
That accuracy seems problematic. If the 49ers do end up drafting Cook, we'll be taking plenty of look at his film. The team is scheduled to host a private workout with the quarterback. They have plenty of visits with other quarterbacks, but there is just this feeling that Cook is the guy Baalke is going to end up wanting out of this draft. Maybe nothing comes of it, but it just feels like I shouldn't be surprised if it happens. Of course, Chip Kelly is expected to have some say in the quarterback position, so this could all mean nothing.
Nobody hit on five categories, while Jared Goff, Paxton Lynch, and Carson Wentz all hit on four of the categories. Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg hit on two of the criteria.