Josh Rosen has established himself as one of the top quarterbacks available in the 2018 NFL Draft.
The 21-year-old excelled in his three years at the UCLA Bruins in the Pac-12. During his time in the college game he threw for 9,340 yards along with 59 touchdowns to just 26 interceptions. Rosen enhanced his reputation in his final season with the Bruin, bouncing back from an injury-hit 2016 term. He threw for a career-best 3,456 yards along with 26 touchdowns.
He impressed during the evaluation process, although his case has not been helped by reports about his attitude. Former head coach Jim Mora did not instill confidence Rosen, suggesting that he would take USC’s Sam Darnold ahead of the quarterback in the Draft.
As a result, Rosen’s stock has slipped, with some suggesting that he could even drop out of the top-10. It would be a surprise to see him last beyond the fifth-overall pick due to the need for top-quality quarterbacks. Therefore take him to be selected with the fifth selection or below at odds of +125 with 888Sport. We’ll now breakdown his potential destinations.
The Browns are in the market for a quarterback and have the pick of the litter with the first-overall selection. Cleveland have moved to alleviate the pressure on their future Draft pick by acquiring Tyrod Taylor from the Buffalo Bills to start at quarterback for the 2018 season. The Browns have been heavily linked with all of the leading signal-callers in the selection process. However, they’ve not had huge ties towards Rosen, and appear to be favouring towards Darnold and Josh Allen. The 21-year-old would fit into the Browns offense and would have a lot of quality targets in the passing game. Hue Jackson has a pro-style offense, which Rosen played in during his time at UCLA.
Rosen is not renowned for his deep ball, playing with a rhythm in the short to intermediate passing game. Cleveland recently acquired Jarvis Landry to fit into their receiving corps along with Josh Gordon, Corey Coleman and David Njoku. Rosen would bring out the best in Landy, while Gordon and the others would offer shots down the field. Questions of his character could affect the Browns’ decision as they have swung and missed too many times on quarterbacks to make a mistake. General manager John Dorsey has to make the right call in his first Draft – therefore Rosen could present too much of a risk compared to Darnold.
Although the Giants have a potential Hall of Famer at the quarterback position in Eli Manning, the club cannot afford to pass up the chance to draft their man of the future. Manning was the architect of New York’s two Super Bowl wins over the New England Patriots in the 2007 and 2011 campaigns. However, his form in recent seasons has declined, although his performances last term were affected by injuries to key players, including Odell Beckham Jr. At the age of 37, Manning’s best days are behind him and given the sharp drop off experienced by his brother Peyton, it would be wise for the Giants to select his successor.
Rosen has the qualities to thrive in New York and would be working under new head coach Pat Shurmur, who brought out the best in Case Keenum last season at the Minnesota Vikings. With Beckham Jr, Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram in the passing game, Rosen would have quality options to disseminate the ball. All three of those players are excellent route runners and could have great chemistry with the former Bruins man. The only question would be his character and whether he would be able to handle the criticism that comes with playing in New York. The Giants should definitely consider him at number two.
The Jets have been starved of quality at the quarterback position for a long time. They’ve not been able to find answer, despite using high picks in the Draft to acquire potential starters. Mark Sanchez was the last man they turned to in the top-10 in the 2009 Draft. However, after an initial bright start to his career, Sanchez was unable to take the next step and became a detriment to the club. Veterans Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh McCown have filled in over the past three seasons, but the Jets are in dire need of youth at signal-caller to revive the franchise’s fortunes.
New York will likely not have all of the top talent to choose from with the third-overall pick. However, they moved into the position for a reason after trading with the Indianapolis Colts. Rosen should be their first port of call should he last until the third selection. He has a mould similar to that of Chad Pennington, who had success with the Jets by leading the club to their last AFC East crown in 2002. Injuries curtailed his career and Rosen’s injury-hit campaign could weigh on the Jets’ mind during the decision.
The Broncos would be Rosen’s final chance to get off the board before slipping out of the top five. Denver are in an interesting position following the signing of Keenum, while they have Paxton Lynch on their roster – their first round pick from the 2016 Draft. Lynch has failed to develop into a quality option for the club, and although Keenum played well for the Vikings last season, it was an outlier from the rest of his NFL career. General manager John Elway faces an interesting decision whether to select Rosen should he fall into the hands.
Alternatively he could trade the pick away to a quarterback-needy team and collect a haul of picks either later in the Draft or in future years. Those could help rebuild the defense that has lost a number of key players since their Super Bowl 50 triumph. Denver proved that a team can win the Vince Lombardi trophy without a quarterback operating at an elite level. However, their form since then has been poor to say the least. The arrival of Rosen could reignite the club’s challenge in the AFC Conference.
Josh Rosen To Be Selected With 5th Pick Or Higher 2018 NFL Draft
Thursday 26th April 2018 20:00 ET (Friday 27th April 2018 01:00 BST)