Let’s assume every player in NFL history was dumped into a draft.
Who would you pick No. 1 overall?
The question was posed Wednesday by Ryan Clark, a former NFL defensive back who now works as an analyst for ESPN. It then was kicked around on Thursday’s episode of “Get Up,” with Domonique Foxworth, Jeff Saturday, Dan Graziano and Mike Greenberg chiming in with their selections.
Has Patrick Mahomes already done enough to be the number 1 overall draft pick in a redraft of every football player that has ever played the game? If not him then who?
— Ryan Clark (@Realrclark25) June 24, 2020
Clark asked specifically whether Patrick Mahomes, now entering his fourth season (third as the Kansas City Chiefs’ starting quarterback), already has done enough to warrant being the top pick.
Foxworth believes so, arguing that Mahomes is the most talented QB in NFL history.
“You watch football, you see what this man is capable of, playing the most important position of any major team sport. It’s the most impactful, at least. He’s the best we’ve seen do it, and you can’t even say it’s a fluke because he’s done it two years in a row. And when he was healthy this past season, he was even better than he was his MVP season,” Foxworth said. “So I don’t understand how you can make any argument other than going with Patrick Mahomes at this point, especially considering the fact that, you already mentioned it, he’s 24 years old. Technically, he could still be on his parent’s insurance, and he’s already had two better football seasons than almost any other quarterback that we’ve seen in the history of football. He could still get better.”
Obviously, the parameters — which were undefined in both Clark’s tweet and the “Get Up” segment — are very important here. Otherwise, it’s extremely difficult to evaluate current players — namely an elite 24-year-old like Mahomes — versus past players whose careers already are etched in stone.
Are we choosing based on a player’s peak, in which case longevity and overall accolades are of lesser importance? Or are we heavily weighing a player’s accomplishments, with Super Bowl titles and MVP awards being paramount in the debate? Maybe pure talent is the defining factor, leading one to consider an athletic freak who underperformed for one reason or another.
Whatever the case, Tom Brady undoubtedly is a popular answer, especially if we’re assuming that our make-believe franchise would be guaranteed his six Super Bowl titles moving forward.
Mahomes ultimately might be more talented, but Brady is widely considered the greatest quarterback in NFL history and still is going strong ahead of his 43rd birthday. That counts for something, right?
“Are we talking just projection, because obviously Mahomes. But if you’re talking about guys whose careers have already happened, you don’t have to project,” Graziano said. “Yeah, Patrick Mahomes won the Super Bowl at 24. Tom Brady won the Super Bowl at 24. And he also won it again at 41, and four times in between. So, you know what’s gonna happen there if you draft Tom Brady at the beginning of his career. You know you’re gonna win six Super Bowls. Patrick Mahomes could — he could win six, he could win 10, he could never win one again.”
Saturday was the only person who went defense, picking New York Giants legend Lawrence Taylor, a revolutionary pass rusher who dominated for 13 seasons (1981-93).
Greenberg, meanwhile, opted for a completely different strategy, suggesting Patriots coach Bill Belichick — who spearheaded New England’s dynasty alongside Brady — should be the first person off any draft board.
“The reality is, if you’re starting a football program with any one person in history, you’re starting it with the coach. The coach is the most important person in any football organization. He could take your players and beat his. He could take his players and beat yours,” Greenberg said. “The answer is Bill Belichick. You would take Bill Belichick by a narrow margin over Vince Lombardi if you were starting a football team with any one person in history, and I will defend that to the death.”
So, who you taking?