Oh, I dunno. I agree he wasn't as good as Nico Cortez might have been, but I think he could have come into his own had they gone into production. Pilots are rarely ever as good as regular series, giving the actors time to fill into their roles.
The only drawback I see is that everyone who knows the franchise knows what will ultimately happen to the Colonies in another 40-some years. That was also one of the problems with Caprica, or any prequel series for that matter. You always know that, in the end, whatever they do won't matter in the long run. It's just showing us the journey they took to get there.
That aside, I think it could have worked had they gotten a decent budget to play with and good writing.