WHERE ARE THEY NOW? First-round QBs from recent NFL Drafts and how this year's crop compares

The first day of the NFL Draft should be a mad scramble for quarterbacks as there are expected to be five or six taken in the first round.

The NFL Draft is often a crapshoot, especially for quarterbacks as teams often reach in the hopes of drafting a franchise player.

Below, we take a look back at the last 22 QBs who have gone in the first round of the NFL Draft, what the draft experts thought at the time, how their careers have turned out, and the six who could join them this year. The QBs are ranked by their pre-draft, Scouts, Inc. draft rating.

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Ranking recent first-round QB picks against 2018's crop
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Ranking recent first-round QB picks against 2018's crop
28. EJ Manuel — Buffalo Bills, 2013

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 76

Pick overall: 16

What the draft experts were saying: "As gifted as any quarterback in the class, with a strong arm and good mobility. Scouts appreciate his leadership qualities and toughness, and hope he can improve on his consistency." NFL.com

Where they are now: After Manuel started ten games as a rookie with the Bills, he fell out of favor and started just seven more games over the next three seasons. He is now a backup with the Oakland Raiders.

(Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
T26. Mason Rudolph — 2018

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 78

Pick overall: ?

What the draft experts were saying: "Tt's never too early to grab a franchise quarterback, right? Rudolph is a blue-collar QB with the leadership skills, intangibles and solid overall game to flourish as a QB1 in a conservative offense." - Bucky Brooks, NFL.com

Where they are nowIn a recent survey of 13 NFL Draft experts, three have Rudolph going in the first round. One expert has Rudolph going as high as the 12th pick.

(Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images)
T26. Tim Tebow — Denver Broncos, 2010

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 78

Pick overall: 25

What the draft experts were saying: "It will take Tebow 3-4 years to learn an NFL offense to where he could actually start a game. Tebow's best fit at the next level will be at fullback or H-Back because his best skills are his running abilities; there's too much development involved to draft Tebow as a franchise quarterback." - Walter Football

Where they are now: Tebow spent just two seasons with the Broncos, winning one playoff game. He was traded to the Jets where he spent one season mostly on special teams. He later failed to make the rosters with the Patriots and Eagles and is now pursuing a career as a professional baseball player.

(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
25. Patrick Mahomes — Kansas City Chiefs, 2017

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 82

Pick overall: 10

What the draft experts were saying: "Mahomes' ability to improvise and extend plays can lead to big plays for his offense, but he will have to prove he can operate with better anticipation and be willing to take what the defense gives him in order to win from the pocket. Mahomes will be a work in progress, but he's a high ceiling, low floor prospect." - NFL.com

Where they are now: Mahomes spent the 2017 season backing up Alex Smith, who was traded to the Washington Redskins after the season. Mahomes is expected to be the starting quarterback for the Chiefs in 2018.

(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
T23. Paxton Lynch — Denver Broncos, 2016

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 85

Pick overall: 26

What the draft experts were saying: "But based on film and projecting for the future, Paxton Lynch is the best quarterback in this NFL Draft. Period." - Sporting News

Where they are now: Lynch has started four games in two seasons and is expected to backup newly acquired veteran Case Keenum in 2018.

(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
T23. Christian Ponder — Minnesota Vikings, 2011

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 85

Pick overall: 12

What the draft experts were saying: "He doesn't have the strongest arm and will have some trouble driving the ball downfield, but he does an excellent job of anticipating and delivering the ball in stride on short-to-intermediate routes. He is also light on his feet and can buy time within the pocket." - ESPN

Where they are now: Ponder led the Vikings to a 10-6 record in his second season, but injuries and inconsistency cost him his job over the next two seasons. Ponder briefly spent time with the Broncos and 49ers, but never appeared in a game.

(Photo by Tom Dahlin/Getty Images)
T21. Lamar Jackson — 2018

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 86

Pick overall: ?

What the draft experts were saying: "He has rare speed and athleticism and can single-handedly win games. Jackson's accuracy is clearly spotty and teams must decide the level of accuracy they are willing to live with relative to his ability to create explosive plays ... Like Deshaun Watson in 2017, Jackson has the ability to counter mental mistakes and turnovers with a high number of explosive, touchdown-making plays." - NFL.com

Where they are nowIn a recent survey of 13 NFL Draft experts, ten had Jackson going in the first round. One expert projected Jackson to go as high as No. 9 overall.

(Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
T21. Brandon Weeden — Cleveland Browns, 2012

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 86

Pick overall: 22

What the draft experts were saying: "Weeden is accurate and can get the ball out of his hands quickly, plus he has a very strong arm. However, there are concerns about his ability to make sound decisions under pressure." - ESPN

Where they are now: Weeden was cut by the Browns after just two seasons. He later started games with both the Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans. After spending the 2017 season as a backup with the Tennessee Titans, Weeden recently rejoined the Texans.

(Photo by: Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images)
20. Deshaun Watson — Houston Texans, 2017

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 87

Pick overall: 12

What the draft experts were saying: "[His interceptions] are worrisome. But then you watch him play like he did in the national title game win over Alabama and you see a potential top-five pick. At 6-2, 221, Watson doesn't have ideal size, but he has the arm strength, toughness and athleticism to play for a long time." - Mel Kiper

Where they are now: Watson was handed the starting job in Week 2 of his rookie season and immediately became one of the most exciting players in the NFL. A torn ACL cut his first season short after just seven weeks.


(Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
19. Mitchell Trubisky — Chicago Bears, 2017

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 88

Pick overall: 2

What the draft experts were saying: "Trubisky is the favorite to be the first quarterback selected. Some team sources see him as a second-round talent, while others have him in Round 1. While he isn't a true top-of-the-draft talent at quarterback like an Andrew Luck or Jameis Winston, Trubisky will probably go high in the first round because of teams desperate to find a franchise quarterback." - Walter Football

Where they are now: Trubisky started 12 games his rookie season, throwing 7 touchdowns and 7 interceptions.

(Photo by Patrick Gorski/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
18. Teddy Bridgewater — Minnesota Vikings, 2014

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 89

Pick overall: 32

What the draft experts were saying: "Compensates for a lack of elite arm talent and prototype measureables with the intangibles and football intelligence that could elevate the other 52 players around him." - NFL.com

Where they are now: Bridgewater led the Vikings to the 2015 playoffs and showed signs of a promising NFL career. But Bridgewater has thrown only two NFL passes since the 2015 playoffs and was recently signed by the New York Jets where he will likely battle a top-rated rookie to backup Josh McCown.

(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
T16. Johnny Manziel — Cleveland Browns, 2014

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 90

Pick overall: 22

What the draft experts were saying: "Nick Saban is the best defensive mind in football and he had no answers for Manziel. That carries a lot of weight with NFL people, knowing he had no answer for Manziel in two football games. He's no guarantee, he's a wild card. But in a league that protects quarterbacks, he can have success." - Mel Kiper

Where they are now: Manziel showed glimpses of promise in two seasons with the Browns, but was cut after reports that he had missed a meeting with the team the final week of the 2015 season. Manziel is now attempting a comeback, although he is expected to first play in the CFL.

(Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
T16. Jake Locker — Tennessee Titans, 2011

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 90

Pick overall: 8

What the draft experts were saying: "Erratic performance has certainly hurt his draft stock. An extremely gifted athlete, Locker's production does not match his talent. He possesses a cannon for an arm, but he is not an efficient passer. At this point, his greatest asset is his athleticism and it is unclear if he will ever be a starting quarterback at the next level." - NFL.com

Where they are now: Locker spent four seasons with the Titans, starting 23 games. But after the 2014 season, he announced his retirement from the NFL, saying he no longer had a desire to play at the level required for the NFL.

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
T12. Baker Mayfield — 2018

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 91

Pick overall: ?

What the draft experts were saying: "Russell Wilson is the closest NFL comparison for Mayfield in our opinion, but there are still some obvious flaws in that comp. Mayfield is one of the most polarizing players in this class, in large part due to his outstanding football character and leadership but debatable maturity. In our opinion, Mayfield grades out as a good NFL starter but he clearly comes with some red flags (measureables, footwork, played in spread offense)." - ESPN.com

Where they are nowIn a recent survey of 13 NFL Draft experts, Mayfield had an average draft position of 6.5 overall, and was projected to go as high as No. 3 to the New York Jets.

(Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
T12. Blake Bortles — Jacksonville Jaguars, 2014

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 91

Pick overall: 3

What the draft experts were saying: "At 6-foot-4, 230 pounds, with not elite but good arm strength, and the ability to move both in the pocket and to make plays down the field as a runner, he has a chance to add value and eliminate negative plays with his mobility as he develops as a passer." - Mel Kiper

Where they are now: Bortles has started all but three games in his four-year NFL career. Bortles' career has been much-maligned, but he did lead the Jags to the AFC Championship game in 2017 and was rewarded with a new 3-year, $54 million contract after the season.

(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
T12. Carson Wentz — Philadelphia Eagles, 2016

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 91

Pick overall: 2

What the draft experts were saying: "With a body type that is as prototypical as they come and a background in reading the entire field and working through progressions, Wentz will immediately check a couple of boxes that many college quarterbacks won't be able to check. While his arm strength is OK, he can still make all the throws and he can make them with accuracy." - NFL.com

Where they are now: Wentz emerged as an MVP candidate in 2017, but a torn ACL cut his season short and Nick Foles took over and led the Eagles to a Super Bowl win. Wentz is hoping to be back in the starting lineup for the first game of the 2018 season, but may miss the preseason.

(Photo by Gavin Baker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
T12. Jared Goff — Los Angeles Rams, 2016

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 91

Pick overall: 1

What the draft experts were saying: "He might need time adjusting to an NFL playbook coming from a wide-open system. He is one of the top two quarterbacks in this class and has the tools and acumen to develop into an above-average starter. " - ESPN.com

Where they are now: Goff had a rough rookie season under Jeff Fisher but turned things around in his second season under rookie head coach Sean McVay. The Rams went 11-4, reached the playoffs, and Goff was named to his first Pro Bowl.

(Photo by Josh Lefkowitz/Getty Images)
T10. Josh Rosen — 2018

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 92

Pick overall: ?

What the draft experts were saying: "Rosen is the most polished quarterback in this class when he's at his best, and he has rare arm talent. But he was inconsistent in 2017 and dealt with a serious shoulder injury in 2016. His medical reports and interviews with teams at the combine will be extremely important." - Mel Kiper

Where they are nowIn a recent survey of 13 NFL Draft experts, Rosen had an average mock draft position of 4.5, with one expert projecting him to go as high as No. 2 in a draft-day trade.

(Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
T10. Josh Allen — 2018

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 92

Pick overall: ?

What the draft experts were saying: "Likely be the biggest boom-or-bust quarterback prospect in the draft. Allen's size and arm talent are prototypical for early first-round picks, but it's rare to find a quarterback with such a low college completion rate become a successful pro." - NFL.com

Where they are nowIn a recent survey of 13 NFL Draft experts, most now feel that Allen will be the top pick by the Cleveland Browns. Nine of the experts have Allen going No. 1 overall.

(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
T8. Marcus Mariota — Tennessee Titans, 2015

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 93

Pick overall: 2

What the draft experts were saying: "Will face the same challenges that several quarterbacks before him have faced in terms of learning how to read defenses and go through progressions. The tape was less kind to Mariota than expected, but his size, athleticism and consistency of football character throughout his career are necessary traits in becoming a good-to-great quarterback. " - NFL.com

Where they are now: After Mariota had a strong sophomore campaign with 26 touchdowns and 9 interceptions, he regressed in Year 3 with 13 touchdowns and 15 INTs.

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
T8. Cam Newton — Carolina Panthers, 2011

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 93

Pick overall: 1

What the draft experts were saying: "There are the polarizing intangibles. Some question his maturity and ability to win over the locker room at the NFL level, while others point to his record as proof that he's an effective leader." - ESPN.com

Where they are now: Newton has become one of the top QBs in the NFL. He is a three-time Pro Bowler and was the 2015 NFL MVP. He signed a 5-year, $104 million contract prior to the 2015 season.

(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
T6. Sam Darnold — 2018

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 94

Pick overall: ?

What the draft experts were saying: "There are a lot of similarities between Darnold and [Philip] Rivers. They have similar builds with hitches in their throwing motions that make them a bit unorthodox. Both are pocket passers who throw the ball accurately with timing and precision. Both also are known to be good leaders, workers and teammates." - Walter Football

Where they are nowIn a recent survey of 13 NFL Draft experts, the majority have Darnold going No. 1 to the Cleveland Browns or No. 2 to the New York Giants. Nobody thinks he will drop farther than No. 3 to the New York Jets.

(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
T6. Ryan Tannehill — Miami Dolphins, 2012

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 94

Pick overall: 8

What the draft experts were saying: "Tannehill is a dynamic athlete at quarterback, so much so that he was a major contributor at receiver for his first two-plus years with the Aggies before becoming their starting signal-caller. In his early starts at quarterback, this NFL-sized prospect was more of a gunslinger, but he has now morphed into an effective and efficient passer in the pocket." - NFL.com

Where they are now: Tannehill started all but three games in his first five seasons with the Dolphins, but missed the entire 2017 season with a knee injury, and is yet to reach the playoffs. Tannehill is expected to be the starter in 2018.

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
5. Blaine Gabbert — Jacksonville Jaguars, 2011

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 96

Pick overall: 10

What the draft experts were saying: "Gabbert has the frame, intangibles and arm strength teams look for. He is a tough leader who can play through pain and rally his teammates, and while he needs to improve his pocket mobility and ability to handle pressure he has the toughness and foot speed to do so." - ESPN.com

Where they are now: Gabbert was traded to the San Francisco 49ers after just three seasons and just prior to the Jaguars drafting Blake Bortles. After three seasons as a part-time starter, he spent the 2017 season with the Arizona Cardinals as a backup, starting five games due to injuries.

(Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
T2. Robert Griffin III — Washington Redskins, 2012

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 97

Pick overall: 2

What the draft experts were saying: "He's accurate, throws a fantastic deep ball, is a proven leader and has shown evaluators he's a QB first, athlete second. Great kid, great pick." - Mel Kiper

Where they are now: After a strong rookie campaign, injuries and inconsistent play limited his playing time over the next two seasons to the point he was reportedly playing safety in practice. After being cut, Griffin spent the 2016 season with the Browns, missing 11 games de to another injury. He was out of the league in 2017 and recently signed as a backup with the Ravens.

(Photo by Daniel Kucin Jr./Icon Sportswire/Corbis via Getty Images)
T2. Jameis Winston — Jameis Winston, 2015

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 97

Pick overall: 1

What the draft experts were saying: "Winston scares the hell out of me, but he is better than the other guy [Mariota]. He is a player. I like him. He is not afraid. He tries to do too much, but just looks like a winner when he plays." - Anonymous NFL offensive coordinator

Where they are now: Winston made the Pro Bowl as a rookie and led the Bucs to a 9-7 record in his second season. This led to the Bucs being a sleeper Super Bowl pick prior to the 2017 season, but Winston and the Bucs struggled to a 5-11 record. Winston still has two years left on his rookie contract.

(Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
T2. Sam Bradford — St. Louis Rams, 2010

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 97

Pick overall: 1

What the draft experts were saying: "Very competitive and a strong leader. Extremely productive and successful in college. " - NFL.com

Where they are now: After Bradford spent five seasons with the Rams, he has bounced around and is now on the Arizona Cardinals, his third team in four seasons. Still, Bradford has made over $114 million in his career, thanks in large part to the decision to go pro after an injury and enter the final draft before the NFL curbed rookie salaries.

(Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
1. Andrew Luck — Indianapolis Colts, 2012

Scouts, Inc. draft rating: 99

Pick overall: 1

What the draft experts were saying: "[Talking to] everybody and anybody, I have never yet heard a dissenting vote about Andrew Luck...If he's not great, then everybody is wrong. Because nobody has stepped up and said Andrew Luck is slightly overrated, not as good as advertised, over-hyped, or this concerns me about his game. Nothing concerns anybody about Andrew Luck." - Mel Kiper

Where they are now: Luck lauded by some as the second-best QB prospect ever, behind John Elway, and early in his career he appeared to be living up to the hype. He was a Pro Bowl QB each of his first three seasons as he led the Colts to the playoffs each year. But he has only played in 22 games the last three seasons and missed the entire 2017 season with a shoulder injury. Setbacks in rehab have not helped and the start of the 2018 season now appears to be in jeopardy.

(Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
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