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2011 NFL Draft: Andrew Luck's Draft Defection

So it turns out Andrew Luck won't be leaving Stanford just yet, which messes up a good many 2011 NFL Mock Drafts and probably made Carolina Panthers quarterback Jimmy Clausen's week. It's great news, as well, for Mizzou's Blaine Gabbert, who moves, with Ryan Mallett, into the discussion for number-one quarterback in the draft. (Cam Newton something something pay-for-play joke.) But it doesn't much hinder the St. Louis Rams' plans—unless you were planning your draft-night party around A.J. Green falling to 14th overall, we can safely sit out the draft hysteria that will set in in the immediate aftermath of the quarterback reshuffling.

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I admire anybody who wants to stay in college, but I'm not sure I see this from Luck's perspective—he can always go back to college, but he can't always be the consensus number-one pick in the NFL Draft, especially with labor concerns looming. Suffering a serious shoulder injury, going number-one anyway, and nearly leading your team to the playoffs worked for Sam Bradford, but if I were a sophomore in college and somebody offered me a $50 million writing gig Mizzou's English department would have to have waited a few years to award me my degree. 

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Regardless, the Rams have already had that situation work in their favor—unlike several teams in front of them, they don't have to worry about Luck's defection toppling the delicate house of cards that would allow them to select their quarterback of the future sometime in the middle of the third round.