Jimmy Garoppolo, other former starters look to reinvent themselves in NFC West

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Eric Williams

NFC West Writer

The quarterback carousel has spun at a dizzying rate this offseason. In all, 21 QBs have changed teams over the past month. Seven of those were starters headed into last season and will be asked to serve as backups heading into this season.

And four of those signal-callers will play in the NFC West: Jimmy Garoppolo with the Rams, Sam Howell in Seattle, Desmond Ridder with the Cardinals and Joshua Dobbs in San Francisco. Combined, the four quarterbacks went 16-32 as starters last season.

The frenetic quarterback movement is the latest example of the NFL’s continued struggles to evaluate QBs in the draft process and to develop them once they arrive in the league, particularly those prospects who are not first-round picks and need time and good coaching to prosper. 

Take Dobbs for example. The former fourth-round pick began 2023 as a serviceable starter for the Cardinals as Kyler Murray recovered from ACL surgery. Once Murray was healthy, the Cardinals traded Dobbs to Minnesota, where he led the Vikings to an upset comeback victory over the Atlanta Falcons after joining the team just five days earlier. By December, however, Dobbs had regressed to the point where he was demoted to Atlanta’s emergency, third-team quarterback.

Ridder was a third-round pick by the Falcons in 2022 and Howell a fifth-rounder by the Commanders that same year. Both were projected as potential long-term starters and had chances to start last season, but when they experienced growing pains, their teams sent them packing. After all, they weren’t first-round picks.

“The NFL has a QB evaluation and development problem,” FOX Sports NFL analyst Bucky Brooks wrote on X. “There’s no other way to spin it. The league doesn’t know what leads to success at the position. And coaches do not know how to play around a QB’s flaws. Until those issues are fixed, we will continue to see a revolving door at the position.”

Offensive…

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Publish date : 2024-04-01 18:52:08

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