Mar 16, 2010
I spent most of today updating our keeper rankings on the site, taking into account all the free agent and player movement activity. It’s an extremely tedious and time-consuming process, especially when there’s significant movement, but that’s not really my point here today.
One of my points is how the QB position in dire straights. It’s bad out there. There are still roughly 15 good players at the position, but that means more than half the teams in the league have a shaky option – or a terrible one. And forget about young prospects; they don’t really exist. I’m sure the proliferation of spread/shotgun offenses in college have something to do with this, but there’s also an odd dearth in prototypical passers out there lately (which is exactly why everyone should be looking out for John Skelton out of Fordham, since he’s a physically impressive QB whose size and arm strength compare to Joe Flacco’s).
But back to the point: it’s a wasteland out there at the position, and that’s exactly why, all of a sudden, 3rd string backup Charlie Whitehurst (whose father, David Whitehurst, was a QB for the Packers in the 70s and 80s) is suddenly a hot commodity as a restricted free agent.
I’ve heard good things about Whitehurst for a couple of years, but who the heck really knows about him because he’s yet to attempt a pass in a real NFL game (he does have 2 carries and a rushing TD).
But apparently, things have gotten so bad in terms of young prospects, that at least two teams (the Cardinals and the Seahawks) are willing to give up a 3rd round pick just to get him. Both teams have extended offers, and if Whitehurst signs one of them and the Chargers fail to match, this is a guy who could quickly land on the fantasy radar (he should be now, actually, for those in keeper or dynasty leagues).
And you know what? I don’t blame those teams at all. Whitehurst has the tools and pedigree you like to see, and as I’ve said he’s shown promise in SD the last couple of years. In fact, I’m kind of surprised he’s not generating more interest out there. The Rams, Bills, Browns, and Raiders could really use a prospect who seems to actually have a chance to eventually develop into a good player.
And by the way, the fact that the Cardinals are seemingly willing to give up a #3 pick for Whitehurst isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement for one Matt Leinart.
Again, I really have no idea about this kid, but I do think he’s intriguing. Maybe I think that because there’s absolute skank at the position in terms of young prospects, but it is what it is.
If you’re in a dynasty or deep, deep keeper league, I’d take a look at this guy.
Here’s his rookie profile we have on the site from 2006. It’s worth noting that a lot of his issues are correctable problems with proper coaching, and Norv Turner is one of the better QB coaches the league has ever seen.
Full Name: Charlie Whitehurst School: Clemson
Ht: 6-4.5 Wt: 223 40: 4.78 Year: 5S
Bio: Moved into the starting lineup as a redshirt freshman. All-Conference selection two of the past three seasons. Senior passing totals included 66.9%/2,278/11 after a junior campaign of 50.7%/2,067/7/17. Career-best passing yardage numbers of 3,561 came as a sophomore.
Positives: Nice-sized athletic passer with an inconsistent game. Displays a sense of timing, sets up with proper fundamentals and quickly releases the ball. Tough, stands in against the rush and is patient when given time. Throws with an over-the-top delivery and has an NFL arm.
Negatives: Indecisive, not poised under pressure and makes poor decisions. Falls out of throws and tends to direct passes. Forces the action as the pocket collapses around him.
Final Analysis: Possessing the physical skills to play at the next level, Whitehurst has yet to display the consistent decision-making required of an NFL starter. Practice-squad passer best served spending a season or two in Europe.