Another gem from our buddy Pete Carroll according to SI.com:
If the Raiders don’t take LSU quarterback JaMarcus Russell with the first pick of the April 28 draft, stop the presses. At a speaking engagement near Palm Springs the other day, USC coach Pete Carroll said he figured he knew his former protégé, Lane Kiffin, would pass on Notre Dame’s Brady Quinn in favor of Russell, now that Kiffin is the head coach of the Raiders. His reasoning: Kiffin likes throwing it downfield, and Russell’s downfield arm is much stronger than Quinn’s. “The kid from LSU is exactly what they’re looking for, more than the kid from Notre Dame,” Carroll said. Just another brick in the wall of the evidence that says we don’t quite know where Quinn will go, but we know where Russell is likely to go.
I find it just a little bit coincidental that Carroll would make public comments about a quarterback, Quinn, from a school he has to recruit head to head with and face every year, not being what the Raiders were looking for. Quinn going #1 overall would be huge for Notre Dame and recruiting in the future, especially at the quarterback position.
For Quinn’s sake I hope he doesn’t get drafted by the Raiders because I think Lane Kiffin is going to be an absolutely terrible head coach for the Raiders, and I would like to see Quinn go to a place where he has a better chance to succeed. Based on reports that Randy Moss has already cursed out Kiffin, the situation in Oakland doesn’t look too promising.
Back to Russell over Quinn for a second though… Does anyone else remember Russell being a likely candidate for the top overall pick before the Sugar Bowl? First the media compared Quinn to Troy Smith all season and now that Smith stank it up in the title game, its Quinn and Russell. Russell is a fine quarterback with a lot of raw talent, but any scout who watches the Sugar Bowl and doesn’t see that his gaudy stats were a result of some of the most shoddy defense in a BCS game is blind. Russell was throwing to wide open receivers and was actually behind them on numerous occasions.
Should the Raiders pass on Quinn, the Lions at #2 could very well take him. With Roy Williams at receiver and Kevin Jones at running back, Quinn would have some weapons to work with in Detroit. After a decade of incompetence from the Lions, there are certainly better situations for Quinn to walk into, but there are also plenty of worse situations.