Is The Sophomore Slump In Play for the 2011 Rookie QBs?

Its been odd the last two years, with so many quarterbacks being drafted and playing in their first few years at a top level. With the new CBA in place that introduces a new slotting system, teams have free reign to draft players and move forward quickly if they dont meet expectations. We are seeing this already with some of the second year QBs that are struggling, and with Colin Kaepernick’s performance last night, who knows what might be in store.

Cam Newton

To say that Newton is in the midst of a sophomore slump, is an understatement. The Panthers have been in games and lost a number of times this year, sometimes due solely on Cam Newton’s mishaps. The Panthers arent going to give up on him anytime soon, especially with the team around him, but hobby values have reflected his dip in performance. I was completely against Newton being the number one pick 2 years ago, and was legitimately surprised when he played the way he did. However, that’s not saying that defenses wont adjust, and also that his confidence will wain enough to derail his career.

2011 National Treasures Cam Newton 3 Color Patch Auto BGS 9.5 – Remember when this was a $1000 card?

2011 Limited Cam Newton Phenoms Patch Auto /199

2011 Exquisite Black Cam Newton Auto /99 – cant believe these are where they are now.

Jake Locker

Like a few of the other QBs, Locker came into an unusual situation in Tennessee, especially when they were able to play as well as they did with Matt Hasselbeck at the helm last year. This year, its been a complete disaster without Locker on the field, and his shoulder injury hasnt helped. However, I dont think there is any denying that Locker has the talent to be a serviceable NFL starter, and even some flashes of brilliance that suggest he is well on his way to a great career. Again, like Newton, Locker is not in trouble of losing the team’s favor, but collectors havent been as friendly as they once were to his potential.

2011 Contenders Jake Locker Auto Ticket PSA 10 – WAAAAY lower than I expected

2011 SP Authentic Jake Locker Auto 3 Color Patch RC

Blaine Gabbert

If there was one QB on the chopping block, its Blaine Gabbert. He has had some nice games this year, but his team is a black hole of frustration across the board. Even with adding players around him like Justin Blackmon, Gabbert has done little to show he is worthy of a long term investment by the Jags. With Chad Henne coming in and dropping 4 TDs on the league’s most feared defense, the case for keeping Gabbert is weakening by the moment. Jacksonville could end up at the top of the draft next year, especially if KC can eek out a few wins here and there. If that happens, Gabbert is gone. It also doesnt help that they have the smallest fan base in the league, and collectors undervalue their players significantly. There was some indication that collector favor was starting back up during his time in the pre-season, but that has moved on like the team’s favor.

2011 National Treasures Blaine Gabbert Jaguars Logo Patch Auto /49 – It is just nuts how low this went.

2011 Five Star Blaine Gabbert Auto RC – Ha!

Christian Ponder

Of all the top 15 QBs, Ponder has the best record at 6-4 with a surprising Vikings team. Granted, much of that is due to the return of Adrian Peterson’s rushing dominance, and Percy Harvin’s ability to be a freakishly talented player. Ponder has had great games when it counted – playing his best football against San Fransisco and Detroit. Its obvious that his team affiliation has driven a lot of his value, and even despite 2 horrendous games of 50 and 60 yards passing, he still has a pretty good stat line for the year. That being said, the Vikings are committed to him for the short term, and I dont think he is in danger of losing his job – YET. That can change in a whim if he is unable to continue performing at a reasonable level for the rest of the year.

2011 Topps Chrome Christian Ponder 3 Color Patch Auto /10

2011 National Treasures Christian Ponder 3 Color Patch Auto RC

Andy Dalton

Its funny that Dalton has been largely ignored over the last two years, despite putting up some incredibly consistent numbers week in and week out. Him and AJ Green have been liquid gold together, as Green is no doubt blossoming into one of the leagues best receivers. Of course, with Cincy being another collecting black hole, its obvious why Dalton hasnt gained favor with the collecting public. You either have to have a ridiculous game with 500 yards and 8 TDs, or win playoff games, and he hasnt done that. He has put up the best numbers of anyone over the two year span, but chicks only dig the long ball – right? Consistency on the Bengals doesnt matter, unless your resume already shows you can be the best at what you do.

2011 Contenders Andy Dalton Auto Ticket RC BGS 9.5

2011 Exquisite Andy Dalton Auto Patch RC

Colin Kaepernick

The new golden boy of the golden team, Alex Smith’s time in San Fran will never be the same. Once a backup comes in and does what Kaepernick did to a team like the Bears, the whispers will never be silenced ever again. Even if Smith comes back, the calls for the new kid will start immediately after his first slip up. Of all the guys drafted in the first two rounds last year, I had the least amount of faith in him, as he didnt play at a college level that dictated his skills were complete enough to compete in the NFL. As you can see, my barometer, so far, is worth about as much as Jamarcus Russell’s pedigree, so dont take that as anything. However, it took last night for the hobby to jump on board, and I doubt they will jump off untill he royally ruins his new crown.

2011 National Treasures Colin Kaepernick 4 color patch auto /99 – Amazing. Just amazing what one game can do.

2011 Topps Chrome Colin Kaepernick Gold Refractor Auto 10/10

Its easy to say that its too early to pass judgement on these guys, but as mentioned above, the timeline is DRASTICALLY different now. Teams will give up on players so much more quickly, thus leading to a crazy carousel of quarterback controversy, and also cementing that your hobby investment will never be safe. Wonderful for us, right?

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