How much influence did Peyton’s ongoing stellar pro career played into Eli being the top prospect? The season before Eli’s draft, Peyton was league MVP and led the league in passing yards. Had Eli not had a Pro Bowl older brother in the league could he of still attempted his holding hostage of the ‘04 Draft by refusing to play for San Diego, and forcing the Chargers to send Eli moments later to the Giants? Of course, nobody dwells on the day that Eli pouted his way to a better franchise since he's gone on to win two Super Bowls.
The same scenario is playing itself out right now in college football—well sort of. In 2002, the newly formed Houston Texans made their inaugural selection and the first pick of the draft in Fresno State quarterback David Carr, who led college football in passing in ’01 with 4,299 yards and 42 TDs. Right now, David’s younger brother, Derek is preparing for his senior year at Fresno State and could be a prospect in the ’14 NFL Draft after throwing for 4,104 yards, 37 touchdowns, and just seven interceptions last year.
How much weight will NFL teams take into account that Derek’s brother has been an NFL quarterback for over a decade? If any, it’s likely to be a whole lot more negative than positive. David has a Super Bowl ring, but it’s from riding the bench behind Eli, as David is considered a bust as the Texans first ever draft pick. Granted, he is not thrown into the conversations with JaMarcus Russell and Ryan Leaf, as most critics understand the difficulties in being the QB of an expansion franchise, but the ’02 quarterback draft class is infamously bad as the first round also produced busts in Joey Harrington and Patrick Ramsey.
Last week another set of brothers became reality in the NFL, as the Jaguars signed Vanderbilt’s Jordan Rodgers as an undrafted free agent. Jordan is the younger brother of the Packers MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers. The signing was big news in the Rodgers household—if you ignore Aaron’s modest new contract signing worth $110 million. Needless to say, it’s going to be a rough road ahead for Jordan.