Stanford has announced QB Andrew Luck is returning to school and will not be entering his name in the 2011 NFL draft. This is an incredibly shocking turn of events as Luck had been all but guaranteed of the top spot. Assuming he does indeed decide to stay in school, then it's possible we're looking at Missouri Tigers QB Blaine Gabbert as the top QB in the 2011 NFL draft class.
Gabbert is ranked by ESPN's Todd McShay as the second best quarterback ahead of guys like Ryan Mallett and Cam Newton. McShay hasn't been the most accurate projecting quarterbacks (Jake Locker anyone?) so take it for what it's worth but I think it's safe to say that Gabbert is in the conversation with those other guys for the top quarterback spot now that Luck is staying in school.
Gabbert has a lot of likes for you to like. He seems like a good, well-rounded person, has the size to be an NFL QB and has the arm strength. He started for two years at Missouri and made the decision last week to enter his name into the 2011 NFL draft.
We're not sure where the quarterbacks will go in the draft now. It was assumed the Panthers would take Luck No. 1 overall but now that he's gone, would they consider Gabbert? That seems hard to comprehend but it does mean Gabbert is likely going to be a serious player in the top 10 this year.
This is a big time turn of events that will benefit Blaine Gabbert.