Is Sam Bradford making a mistake by staying at Oklahoma?

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Is Sam Bradford making a mistake by staying at Oklahoma?

t By Bill Smith

Technorati Tags: nfl Draft,NFL,COLLEGE FOOTBALL,Oklahoma,Bradford,Smith,Bengals,Lions,Chiefs,Oregon,Raiders,Russell,Young,TItans,USC,Leinart,Cardinals,Arizona,Tennessee,Kansas City,Detroit,Tebow,Florida

In a previous article I wrote that Tim Tebow made a great decision by staying at Florida. He was going to be a 2nd or 3rd round choice this year but could work his way into the first round with a strong senior year. However, I believe that Oklahoma QB Bradford is making a mistake by staying.

I am reminded of QB Matt Leinart of USC. He would have been the first overall pick had he come out as a junior. But he stayed in school for his senior year and fell to the 10th pick overall in the 2006 draft. Alex Smith from Utah was the first pick of the 49ers. That decision cost Leinart 3.5 million dollars over the first 3 years of his contract.

There is only one first round QB in the 2009 draft—Matt Stafford of Georgia. While USC’s QB Mark Sanchez will probably be drafted in the first round, at this point I don’t see him as a 1st round talent. QB Akili Smith from Oregon started only one year in the Pac-10 and look how well that turned out for the Bengals.

With no less than 14 teams needing either starting or backup QBs, the need will never be greater and the supply seldom lower. [You can see the list on NFLDraftDog.com in my column about the Browns.] In my opinion, Bradford would have been either the first pick by Detroit or the third pick by Kansas City. Bradford would have taken over the top QB ranking at the combine.

Bradford has better accuracy than Stafford but slightly less arm strength. I’m not big on arm strength. Both Vince Young of Tennessee and JaMarcus Russell of Oakland have great arm strength but couldn’t hit snow if they were passing from the North Pole. The NFL has seen dozens of strong armed QBs crash and burn over the last few years. Joe Montana had average arm strength but it got stronger from lifting so many championship trophies.

Bradford is more of a pocket passer than Stafford and has a little more experience throwing after taking snaps from under center than Stafford. That should translate into less trouble mastering the 3, 5, and 7 step drops so critical to developing accuracy in the NFL. Bradford processes information quickly and is accurate. He completed 68% of his passes with 50 touchdowns and 8 interceptions.

Stafford is very inconsistent. Even though he has the better team in all but a hand full of games Georgia played, he still often throws interceptions in critical points in the game. He is not nearly as accurate as Bradford completing 61% of his throws but having only 25 TDs and 10 interceptions.

The risk is that Bradford’s stock will drop in his senior year. He loses WRs Juaquin Iglesias and Manuel Johnson, and probably Jr. TE Jermaine Gresham. While he will still have some good targets, chances are they will not as good or as consistent as those three. They should all be drafted in the first 3 rounds. He will also be missing at least two of his interior linemen Duke Robinson and Brandon Walker as well as his best tackle Phil Loadholt.

Given all the talent the Sooners will lose, it would make more sense to come out now. He will be running for his life whichever bad NFL team he goes to in 2010 and may have to run from less than optimum pass protection next year at Oklahoma. He might as well get paid to do it.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for NFLDraftDog.com and edits fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .


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Is Sam Bradford making a mistake by staying at Oklahoma? by

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17 Responses to “Is Sam Bradford making a mistake by staying at Oklahoma?”


  1. Weight Loss Diet
    on Jan 19th, 2009
    @ 6:08 pm

    He opened the door for Sanchez who rushed through it upsetting his coach at USC.
    Bradford should have made the jump. I don’t think he can make much of an improvement in his senior year over the great junior year that he had.

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  2. Payday Loan Software
    on Jan 26th, 2009
    @ 11:21 pm

    Sam Bradford is a GREAT QB. But he needs to go to the NFL and make the big bucks. Oklahoma is a good team and will definitely be good again next year, but he’s peaked and needs to enter the draft before he gets hurt.

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  3. Finance Blog
    on Jan 27th, 2009
    @ 5:31 pm

    Bradford did absolutely the right thing. There is more in life than how much money you can make in the NFL. He is setting a good example for collegiate athletes of the future. He’s saying “finish school, don’t hop into the NFL the first chance you get.” Tim Duncan also finished school, and look, he was a number one pick.

    Finance Blog’s last blog post..Why the Government Should Budget Like the Rest of Us

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  4. payday loans
    on Jan 30th, 2009
    @ 1:06 am

    Sam Bradford is a GREAT QB. But he needs to go to the NFL and make the big bucks.

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  5. Memorabilia
    on Jan 30th, 2009
    @ 2:04 am

    really nice stuff, just subscribed to your RSS. Googled for “memorabilia” and came to this post “Bradford making a mistake by staying at Oklahoma? | FryingPan Sports”.

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  6. NFL Sports Nut
    on Feb 2nd, 2009
    @ 8:44 pm

    I hate to say it but if you have a chance to go into the NFL and make a couple million take it. You could get hurt next season and you have no guaranteed money like you would if you had a contract. But speaking as a fan, who loves the game, I respect any person who doesn’t view money as everything and is willing to stay for another year.

    Go Sooners!

    Wes

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  7. Payday Loans
    on Feb 6th, 2009
    @ 9:56 pm

    GREAT QB. But he needs to go to the NFL and make the big bucks.

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  8. Payday Loans
    on Feb 7th, 2009
    @ 8:04 pm

    I agree. He needs to go to the NFL and play with the big dogs.

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  9. Steve
    on Feb 10th, 2009
    @ 8:55 pm

    He might not even be a Pro caliber quarterback but if your hot and a couple of teams think you have the potential, take the money.

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  10. Payday Loans
    on Feb 10th, 2009
    @ 5:55 pm

    I agree with you about Tim Tebow and also about Sam Bradford. Bad decision to stay.

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  11. Steve
    on Feb 10th, 2009
    @ 8:53 pm

    Take the money when you can. Look at Sanchez who could be the #1 pick overall this spring.

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  12. payday loans
    on Feb 11th, 2009
    @ 6:42 pm

    i think he made a good choice of staying in school because with sports especially like football injuries run high and one injury can hurt your career. But he made the choice to stay in school that way he at least has his education to fall back on

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  13. Steve
    on Feb 14th, 2009
    @ 7:54 pm

    Interesting as injuries is often a good reason to leave school so you get the paycheck before you can’t compete anymore. But I see your point of having the degree.

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  14. Memorabilia
    on Feb 11th, 2009
    @ 7:35 pm

    very good article. thanks for sharing. Added to my RSS. I’ll return again.

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  15. Steve
    on Feb 14th, 2009
    @ 7:53 pm

    RSS is a great way to stay up on the latest postings. There’s an RSS subscription icon in the upper left hand side of the homepage.

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  16. Bridgman Pest Control
    on Feb 11th, 2009
    @ 8:14 pm

    nice article, i understand that he probably should have gone this year, but maybe he has is own reasons, and is confident he can get the same numbers this season too, i think if he can it could be great, and maybe he doesn’t care about money.

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  17. cash advance software
    on Apr 9th, 2009
    @ 12:15 am

    Yes, Bradford should have gone to the NFL. He will not be able to put up the same numbers because most of his O-line is gone. I think he would have gone #1 this year, but next year he will be a top 10, but not #1. He lost millions from this.

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