Yesterday was a pretty big day for a lot of teams, either putting them on track for a continued drive to the post season, or severely limiting their chance at success. For rookies this week, there was also a lot on the line, as we are finally starting to see the true impact of their contributions this season. Obviously, the most impactful position in the hobby is quarterback, and for Ryan Tannehill and Russell Wilson, there were two very different results on sunday.
Everyone was quite aware of Tannehill’s raw and undeveloped potential coming out of Texas A&M, with very few games on his resume. It was also pretty clear that the Dolphins would have to rely on their defense to keep them in games without Brandon Marshall or a running game to speak of. Through the first three games, Tannehill had flashes of brilliance, but struggled overall. Against the 4-0 Arizona Cardinals, he shook off a lot of the questions about his talent by setting a rookie record for passing yards in a game. As a result, Tannehill’s cards have jumped significantly, even though many collectors were already buying in:
Personally, I think he could end up being pretty good with a long leash to develop the knowledge needed to be a successful NFL QB. With the way rookie contracts are created now, that might not be an available option if the team continues to be terrible under his leadership. Obviously his stats will dictate a lot, but with a guy like him, he will need adequate time. I have to believe the Dolphins understood this, and as long as Joe Philbin is there as coach, he should have the starting job. If Philbin gets the axe, Tannehill could be next.
On the other hand, you have Russell Wilson, the darling of the NFL pre-season, who won out the starting job over free agent pickup Matt Flynn. Yesterday was not his day, throwing 3 picks in a loss to the Rams. Even though he benefited from the ill-fated call in the Green Bay game to pick up the win over the Packers, it didnt do much to help his future value potential around the hobby. Again, that hasnt stopped people for spending crazy money on him:
After a huge spike when he was named starter, his cards have slowly come back down to earth. Wilson definitely has great intangibles from what the scouts are saying, but as we saw with many who came before, Intangibles cant help you on the stat sheet. Wilson may continue to be the starter, but the Seahawks have literally nothing invested in him as a later pick. Flynn is making millions to sit on the bench, and I have a feeling Wilson’s job could be at risk if Seattle continues to lose.
Overall, these two guys definitely have potential, but as I have said numerous times before, its really tough to buy in this early without that voice in the back of your head saying mean things to your wallet. Be careful everyone.