Something is happening in Denver. Either Tim Tebow’s legend is growing. Or it is on its last legs. But if the Broncos do go with Kyle Orton as their starting quarterback, the Broncos may be denying Tebow an opportunity that most first-round quarterbacks automatically receive.
There is a healthy debate in the NFL over whether a hot shot rookie quarterback should be thrown into the fire their rookie year. Teams appear to be split on the issue. In the 10-year span beginning in 2001, 27 quarterbacks were taken in the first round of the NFL draft. Of those, 14 started at least half of their team’s games.
But while the rookie year is a question, most agree that a future franchise QB should be under centre by year-two.
Of the 25 first round quarterbacks in the last 10 years that have been in the league two years, 19 started at least half of their teams games. Of the six that did not, two were injured (Matthew Stafford, Matt Leinart), three were behind All-Pro quarterbacks (Phillip Rivers, Aaron Rodgers, Brady Quinn), and the sixth was, well, Rex Grossman.
Time will only tell if the Broncos make Tebow the next Grossman.
Here are the games started by year of the first round quarterbacks in the last 10 years…
All data via Pro-Football-Reference.com
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