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2011 Senior Bowl: Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick Rocketing Up The Charts?

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Since we began talking about the Vikings' prospects in the 2011 NFL Draft, I've often spoken of a "Big Four" at the quarterback position, consisting of Missouri's Blaine Gabbert, Washington's Jake Locker, Arkansas' Ryan Mallett, and Auburn's Cam Newton.

If the buzz coming out of Mobile today is any indicator. . .there's a chance we may have to make it a Big Five.

Yes, the prospect that's clearly making the most noise down in Mobile today is University of Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick. People haven't talked much about Kaepernick to this point, mainly because of their worries about his ability to adjust to the funky "pistol" offense that the Wolf Pack runs. It's hard to question Kaepernick's athleticism. He stands 6'5", was once a Chicago Cubs' pitching prospect (the ability to throw a 95-mph fastball will make those sorts of things happen), and he's one of only two players in NCAA history to pass for over 8,000 yards and rush for more than 4,000 in a career. . .former Missouri quarterback and current New York Jets' Swiss Army knife Brad Smith is the other.

Pro Football Talk is comparing Kaepernick's rise to that of current Bears' quarterback Jay Cutler back in 2006. They have a bunch of links to the raves that Kaepernick has been drawing over the past couple of days. . .some people are saying he's even outshining Locker, thought to be the best quarterback in Mobile before the practices got underway.

Cutler came out of relative obscurity to become the 11th overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft. . .will Kaepernick make a dramatic enough rise where the Vikings could take him at #12 in 2011?