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Should Mike Maccagnan Pick The Next Jets QB?

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Philadelphia Eagles v New York Jets Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

Now that the Jets have been mathematically eliminated from contention for a spot in the 2017 NFL playoffs it’s time to turn our attention to 2018 and beyond. Shockingly the Jets need to find a quarterback. That’s hardly ever the case. However, given that the two relatively young quarterbacks currently on the Jets roster have given no indications they will develop into starting caliber quarterbacks in the NFL, general manager Mike Maccagnan will most likely be selecting a quarterback in the 2018 draft. The question is, should he be the one to make that selection?

To begin to answer that question, let’s take a look at his history selecting quarterbacks in the NFL draft since he began his career with the Houston Texans in 2002. There are some substantial caveats here. Mike Maccagnan was not at any time the general manager of the Texans, so we cannot be sure he would have made the same selections had he been the guy in the war room turning in the draft card. In addition, the further back in time we go, the less likely it is that Maccagnan had a major influence on the selection. He began his career with the Texans low down on the totem pole and worked his way up over time. Given these caveats, it is still perhaps instructive to examine the Texans’ history selecting quarterbacks, as Maccagnan most likely had some influence on the selections, and also was most likely influenced himself by the Texans’ organizational philosophy. Let’s see what we can glean here.

Here is a list of every quarterback drafted by the Texans from 2002 through Maccagnan’s last year in the organization, 2014, along with the round they were taken in.

2002 David Carr, Round 1

2003 Dave Ragone, Round 3

2003 Drew Henson, Round 6

2004 B.J. Symons, Round 7

2008 Alex Brink, Round 7

2011 T.J. Yates, Round 5

2014 Tom Savage, Round 4

A couple of things stand out here. First, other than David Carr, the first pick of the 2002 draft, the Texans never devoted premium draft assets to the quarterback position. This is likely because they had Carr from the very beginning, then when they gave up on Carr the Texans brought in Matt Schaub in a trade with the Atlanta Falcons.

The other thing that stands out is the Texans never selected a good QB in the draft during Mike Maccagnan’s tenure. How much of that we can attribute to Maccagnan’s influence is debatable, but the raw track record is not; this is a poor list of quarterbacks.

From 2015 on Mike Maccagnan became the guy turning in the draft card as the New York Jets general manager. The poor list of drafted quarterbacks remained intact. In 2015 Mike Maccagnan selected Bryce Petty in the 4th round. In 2016 Mike Maccagnan selected Christian Hackenberg in the 2nd round. Combining the Jets and the Texans’ quarterback selections, Maccagnan has been involved at some level in selecting nine quarterbacks, at least one in each round of the NFL draft. All nine have been between 6’ 2” and 6’ 5” tall; it’s probably safe to say Maccagnan has a type. Those hoping the Jets might draft one of the smaller quarterbacks in the 2018 draft will likely be disappointed.

Of the nine quarterbacks Maccagnan had some involvement in selecting, only one, David Carr, the first overall selection in 2002, ever started as many as 10 NFL games. None of the nine have posted a career passer rating as high as 75. None have ever played in a playoff game. None have a career completion percentage as high as 60%. None have ever made a Pro Bowl.

Given this track record, is this the man you want to draft the next Jets quarterback? Let us know your thoughts.