Looking at the latest installment of Monday Morning Quarterback this morning. . .a must-read for anybody on a Monday morning. . .and he's rightfully going on about how well Aaron Rodgers has played this season. He mentions how far Rodgers had fallen in the 2005 NFL Draft, and gives us this passage.
Every team that passed on Rodgers in the draft -- Miami, for Ronnie Brown, Minnesota (Troy Williamson), Washington (Carlos Rogers), Minnesota again (Erasmus James), Jacksonville (Matt Jones), and, just one pick before Green Bay, Oakland (Fabian Washington) -- has to be retching right now.
Projecting Rodgers' full season, with an asterisk next to what would be league records: .725* completion percentage, 5,238* passing yards, 48 touchdowns, 6 interceptions; 129.1* passer rating.
Minnesota twice? Fabian Washington? That has to hurt.
Yes, if you want to get technical about things, the Minnesota Vikings did pass on Aaron Rodgers. Twice. Here's the one minor caveat to that, though.
In April of 2005, when the draft took place, the Minnesota Vikings had a 27-year old quarterback named Daunte Culpepper that was coming off of a season where he had thrown for 4,717 yards (and set the NFL's single-season total yardage record), threw 39 touchdown passes to only 11 interceptions, and had finished runner-up to Peyton Manning in the voting for the league's MVP award.
Why in the blue hell would the Minnesota Vikings have even contemplated taking a quarterback in the first round of the draft that year? I mean, unless there was somebody out there that knew that Culpepper was going to get his knee turned into spaghetti by Chris Gamble seven games into the 2005 season. . .and, if somebody had known that, it would have been really awesome of them to share that information with the team so they could have had a heads-up.
Simple. . .they wouldn't have contemplated it, and they didn't. Their two biggest needs were wide receiver and defensive end. . .certainly not quarterback. . .and they attempted to fill those needs as best they could with the picks they had. Did both of those picks flop? They sure did. That's just the way the draft works.
Hindsight is always 20/20. . .if we had to do it all over again today, do you think 198 picks would pass before Tom Brady's name was called? Do you think Arian Foster would have gone totally undrafted? Heck, John Randle went totally undrafted, and that was back when the draft was twelve rounds long as opposed to seven. Think that would happen if we could do the 1990 NFL Draft all over today?
Yeah, the Vikings passed on Aaron Rodgers in 2005. People like to point that out. People don't always seem to want to point out the fact that there was a good reason.