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Back-To-Back Quarterbacks In The First Round Is Rare

The Cardinals, at this point, have done a nice job staying quiet about what they will do with the first overall pick in the draft. But if they go quarterback and take Kyler Murray, they will become the rare franchise to take a QB in the first round in back-to-back drafts after taking Josh Rosen in the first round last year.

In fact, it's happened just two previous times in the last 50 years. In 1989, the Cowboys took UCLA's Troy Aikman first overall -- and yet, later that offseason, gave up their 1990 first-round pick in the 1989 supplemental draft to take Miami's Steve Walsh. Walsh and Aikman battled as rookies before Aikman ultimately won the job and went on to a Hall of Fame career.

The other time it happened in actual consecutive years was when the Colts used the second of two first-rounders (still fourth overall) in 1982 to take Art Schlichter of Ohio State. A year later, they drafted Stanford's John Elway first overall. The Elway story is well known, because he let the Colts know he'd never play for them -- saying he'd play baseball for the Yankees -- and eventually was traded to the Broncos. The Colts needed a QB, though, because Schlichter was suspended by the league for gambling after just a season. The situation couldn't have been more complicated.

There was an era in the NFL when teams spent first-rounders on QBs in back-to-back years a few times, however. The 49ers did it in 1956 and 1957. The Redskins did it three straight years, in 1959, 1960 and 1961. The Rams also did it three straight years, in 1962, 1963 and 1964.

UPDATE: The Cardinals went back to back, picking Murray first overall.

** FILE ** In this Dec. 10, 1989, file photo, Dallas Cowboys' quarterback Troy Aikman is unable to get a pass off as he is tackled by Philadelphia Eagles' Reggie White during the first half of NFL football game in Philadelphia. The Eagles-Cowboys game on Thanksgiving in 1989 was known as the “bounty bowl”, when a Cowboys player said the Eagles had bounties out on Troy Aikman. (AP Photo/Brad Bower)
Cowboys QB Troy Aikman is sacked in a 1989 game.