The Bears like Oregon’s Marcus Mariota. But the benefits of moving up to select a quarterback in the first round are rarely worth the cost.
It’s a fact of life in the NFL that should scare off first-year general manager Ryan Pace, among other reasons.
Since 2000, there have been 15 teams that have traded up to draft a quarterback in the first round. And there are only two Super Bowl winners — Eli Manning and Joe Flacco — among those quarterbacks.
The best quarterbacks drafted as a result of those trades include Michael Vick (Atlanta Falcons, 2001), Manning (New York Giants, 2004), Jay Cutler (Denver Broncos, 2006) and Flacco (Baltimore Ravens, 2008).
The misses vastly outnumber the hits, and it’s a stunningly bad list: Kyle Boller (Ravens, 2003), J.P. Losman (Buffalo Bills, 2004), Jason Campbell (Washington Redskins, 2005), Brady Quinn (Cleveland Browns, 2007), Mark Sanchez (New York Jets, 2009), Josh Freeman (Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2009), Tim Tebow (Broncos, 2010), Blaine Gabbert (Jacksonville Jaguars, 2011), Robert Griffin III (Redskins, 2012) and Johnny Manziel (Browns, 2014). The Minnesota Vikings also traded up to select Teddy Bridgewater in 2014, but he’s their starter and showed promise as a rookie.
Bears coach John Fox wasn’t part of the Broncos regime that traded second-, third- and fourth-round picks to the Ravens to move up and select Tebow at No. 25. He joined Denver the following season.
Florida State’s Jameis Winston still is widely projected to be selected first overall by the Buccaneers. That leaves Mariota at No. 2 for the Tennessee Titans.
If teams want the second overall pick to take Mariota, ESPN front-office analyst Bill Polian, the former general manager of the Indianapolis Colts, said there’s already a price set for it.
Three years ago, the Redskins gave up three first-round picks and a second-rounder to select Griffin. Washington only moved up from No. 6 to No. 2.
“It was in a very similar situation,” Polian said in a recent conference call. “Marcus played in a similar offensive system, and they had similar levels of success, with Marcus having a little more than RG3.
‘‘So why wouldn’t that be the benchmark? It’s easy to say we’ll go up in the draft, but what’s the price?
“Keep in mind, with all this talk, which is great, that’s what the draft is all about. In many ways, it’s fantasyland. Everybody has their own needs, desires and deals that they want to cook up. That’s what makes it fun.
‘‘But the fact is that it takes two to tango, and the people that are trading down are the ones that set the level of compensation.”