Staff Writer Omar Kelly breaks down Blaine Gabbert vs. Cam Newton
Blaine Gabbert: Started 26 of 31 games at Missouri, competing 60.9 percent of his passes while throwing for 6,822 yards as a senior. He threw 40 touchdowns and 18 interceptions.
Cam Newton: Completed 66.1 percent of his passes in his one season as a starter at Auburn, throwing for 2,854 yards with 30 touchdowns and seven interceptions.
Gabbert: At 6-foot-5, 235 pounds he possesses prototype size. He also has a powerful arm that generates velocity, but can throw with touch and accuracy.
Newton: Possesses unmatched size (6-foot-6, 250 pounds) and has unquestioned athletic ability, which allowed him to rush for 1,473 yards and 20 touchdowns last season.
Gabbert: He ran a typical spread offense, where he only read one receiver on many plays. That means he'll likely need time to transition to a pro-style scheme.
Newton: He took virtually all of his snaps out of shotgun and if he didn't like what he saw, he usually took off running. That doesn't translate well at the next level.
Gabbert: Carolina, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Arizona, San Francisco and Tennessee all need a QB and his intellect, size, and arm strength will likely make him a top-five pick.
Newton: His talent is deserving of the No. 1 overall pick, but character concerns will make him drop. Washington could use his skill set effectively in a West Coast offense.
Gabbert is the safest bet to contribute right away, but Newton possesses the most upside if given time to develop. He could be another Vince Young, which is good and bad.
Best of the rest: Washington's Jake Locker, Arkansas' Ryan Mallett, Nevada's Colin Kaepernick, FSU's Christian Ponder, Iowa's Ricky Stanzi
Worth noting: There could be as many as seven quarterbacks selected in the first two rounds, but Mallett, plagued by concerns about his character and personality, is the wild card of the batch. His stock is falling, much like Jimmy Clausen's did last season before the Panthers selected him late in the second round. Delaware's Pat Devlin, TCU's Andy Dalton and Idaho's Nathan Enderle could be late-round steals.
Dolphins' focus: The Dolphins desperately want to add a quarterback who can push Chad Henne for the starting spot, but the unsettled CBA issues might handcuff the organization. Trades for veteran quarterbacks like Carson Palmer, Kevin Kolb, Kyle Orton and Vince Young won't be allowed until a new deal is completed. If a deal isn't done before the draft, the Dolphins might be forced to select a quarterback early because Henne and Tom Brandstater are the only options presently on the roster, and the free agency crop isn't promising.
Bucs' focus: The Bucs hit a home run selecting Josh Freeman in the first round two years ago; he's developed into a franchise quarterback. Josh Johnson and Rudy Carpenter are capable backups for Tampa Bay.
Jags' focus: David Garrard is coming off the best season of his career, but it's time for Jaguars General Manager Gene Smith to find someone young to develop.