This should come as no surprise, but Ryan Mallett has declared himself eligible for the 2011 draft, after a very strong (regular) season. Here is an excerpt from the press release in which he announced his intentions.
"Ever since I was a kid, my dream has always been to play for the Razorbacks and I am thankful I had the opportunity to do so. A year ago, when I returned to school I said I wanted to help lead this team to a place among the nation's elite and for the Razorback community to have a mindset to expect greatness. There is no doubt we got there together and this program will continue to play games on the biggest stages and when it does we'll come out swinging. Playing in the NFL is a goal of mine and I am grateful to the people that have prepared me to take the next step."
My first question is, was playing at Arkansas really a dream of yours considering you only attended the school after transferring there from Michigan? But that's besides the point.
Despite a relatively poor performance in the Sugar Bowl against Ohio St., Mallett still figures to be taken in the middle of the first round, which means he should be available when the Redskins pick either 10th or 11th. Is he the type of quarterback that Mike Shanahan would like to build his team around for the foreseeable future?
Conventional wisdom says no. Shanahan usually likes to have a quarterback who can move around in the pocket. I'm not saying they need to be Michael Vick, just more so Ben Roethlisberger. Someone who can move around and throw accurately while in motion. Mallett has demonstrated an absolute cannon of an arm that is accurate when he is standing still in the pocket, but has not proven that he can maintain that accuracy and arm strength when moved out of the pocket. The game clinching interception he threw in the Sugar Bowl came with a little bit of pressure that forced Mallett to move ever so slightly.
The Redskins need a quarterback, and Mallett should be available. We'll have to wait until April to see if the Redskins feel as though he is a good fit.