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I’m all in on _______ as the new quarterback for the Redskins in 2012. Vague? Maybe. But focus not on the blank, but on the word “new”. New as in not Rex Grossan or John Beck. This year more than any I can remember, the QB options abound for teams picking near the top of the draft. All of which seem to be better than what they have had since Jason Campbell left town.
Some likely options:
Peyton Manning- The 800 lbs gorilla in the room is; will he get the strength back and be able to make all of the throws he could in the past? Let’s assume that he can. Save for the neck stuff, he has been an iron man. He’s otherwise healthy, takes care of himself and should be able to play for four or five more years. Mike Shanahan will trust him enough to hand over the control that Manning will need to be effective. With QB of his caliber at the helm, just sit back and watch how much better everyone else gets. The O line suddenly gets better because of quicker decision making and a faster release. The receivers somehow manage to get open more often and now get more yards after the catch. Accuracy makes a mediocre receiver look good. Witness the wideouts who looked good in New England , and could not produce anywhere else. With fewer men in the box, instantly your running backs seem to be more explosive and have better vision. When you play with a lead, watch how many sacks Kerrakpo can post. Manning’s health is a big IF, but even under a best case scenario, they must draft his replacement this year or next. The draft is deep with QB’s this year, so now is probably the time.
Matt Flynn- I know, I know three games is not a big enough sample to judge a quarterback. Kevin Kolb, Matt Cassel, and Scott Mitchell show that it is a big risk to take Matt Flynn. And if I had a dime for every back-up QB who threw 6 TD’s against a play-off team, I’d have….oh yeah. A dime. The big indicator will be if Dolphin’s new head coach, Joe Philbin goes after him hard in free agency. Philbin was Flynn’s offensive coordinator last year, and if the Dolphins are not interested, then nobody should be. I just know that in one game he threw three times as many TD passes as John Beck did in three. Maybe 20 years of mediocrity or worse has made me willing to accept anything new, with the promise of being better than the last. He likely won’t cost any draft picks, and his salary number is reported to be in the 3-4 million dollar range(I suspect it will go much higher). So in that regard the risk is fairly low.
Robert Griffin III- This guy just makes me salivate. I mean he could be the next Heath Shuler. Wait, wait. That’s not what I meant. He could be the highest pick the Redskins have ever used for a QB. Assuming they trade up to the second position to get him. He has everything that you would want. Big arm, fast, smart, accurate, and fast. Did I say fast? The great thing about him is, that despite blazing speed, he always looks to pass first. He moves in the pocket, shifts to avoid pressure, and keeps his eyes downfield the whole time. But when everything breaks down, he’ll bolt from the pocket and make defenders look silly trying to catch him. That is a skill that he’ll need on a team like the Redskins. The downside is it will cost a ton in draft picks to get him. Obviously they’ll swap the #6 pick with (the Rams?) plus next year’s first rounder and another pick. Possibly another first rounder. That’s a lot, BUT… Look at the last 6 or 7 Super Bowls. The odds of winning one without at top shelf QB are slim. So roll the dice. You can build a team safely and get to 9-7. Where’s the fun in that?
Kyle Orton and Ryan Tannehill/Brock Osweiler/Kirk Cousins/Brandon Weeden/etc- Kyle Orton looks like an NFL QB. I liked him at Purdue. He just looked like a pro. But results at the pro level tell a different story. He lost his job in Denver to Tim Tebow, who completes about 45% of his passes. He does not suck. He could improve the Redskins to 10-6, but that is not the goal. He would however serve as a bridge to the new guy. The same role that Grossman was supposed to play, except better. What evidence do I have? None. But could it be worse?
Life under the Snyder regime has lead many fans to a point at which we will take anything over the suckitude that we currently endure. But this year feels different. The landscape is lush with choices. More than half of which should be successful. I’ve been told that Shanahan is a great judge of QB talent. If so, he’ll make the right choice. If not, a fourth whiff in three years will earn him his walking papers. A new QB will buy him at least two more years, but make no mistake, this next choice of QB is his Rubicon. Get it right, and it’s wine and rose. Get it wrong, and it’s… Well we know what it is. We’ve seen it for 20 years.
Recently Grantland.com ran a piece by economists Tyler Cowen an Kevin Grier, who postulated that American football could soon cease to exist. The premise is that injuries and subsequent litigation would eventually lead to so much fear that the monied class would end their support and it would all come crashing down.
It is quite likely that litigation will soon overrun football, as it has nearly every facet of our lives. But litigation never puts an end to things that people love. It can and will likely make it more expensive in the coming years, and we will pay for it in any number of ways. This could be through increased cable rates, more or better commercials, and possibly pay per view.
But they are overlooking a couple of important things. First is informed consent. As we learn more about the risk, future generations will go in with eyes wide open thus reducing exposure to purveyors of the sport. One example of this is, rather than banning the silica packets that come packed in all our electronics, I’ve now been admonished to refrain from eating them. Like mowing in the rain with bare feet, I no longer do it. Thanks lawyers, I really dodged a bullet.
Another thing that they get wrong is when they cite examples of other things that have gone by the wayside. For example 40% of companies on the 1983 Fortune 500, no longer exist. A quick look will show that list contains companies like Eastman Kodak and Polaroid. Another example they cite is Napster. These companies are gone because somebody came up with a better way. Not because nobody wants pictures or music anymore. They also put forth as evidence of invetible change, the collapse of the USSR. So because Polaroid and Communism failed, football will as well?
It makes people look really smart to make bold predictions like this. In 15 years if football is gone, they look omniscient. In the more likely scenario, in which the NFL claims MLB and the NBA as its bitches, we have all forgotten their quaint little premise.
I hate to get all “Oliver Stone” here, but I feel like ESPN (Grantland’s benefactor) has been trying to ram soccer up my descending colon for the last couple of years. With their radio guys telling me how much they now love soccer, despite years of mockery and disdain. They see the writing on the wall. Simple math dictates that those who make more babies will eventually take over.
They are just greasing us up for the inevitable. Football will not end because of injuries in 15-20 years. It will eventually be subjugated by other more Euro sports in maybe 50 or 60 years. By then I should be several years in the ground. But for you whippersnappers out there: Are you ready for some futball?! Look on the bright side you be able to get fresh produce on the freeway off-ramp.
As a Redskin fan, I simply cannot wrap my feeble brain around this. The Giants, who will face the Patriots in the Super Bowl on Sunday, lost twice to the 5-11 team from D.C.. It’s like Julia Roberts marrying Lyle Lovett, or the Alec Baldwin in Pearl Harbor. It strains credulity, and simply makes no sense at all.
The first game in week one was a road game for the G-men, and they came into Fed-Ex field beat up and unprepared for the onslaught of Rex Grossman. That’s fine. It happens. The Redskins still believed that Rex was an NFL caliber QB, and didn’t know they were supposed to lose. But the second loss to Washington defies all logic.
In that tilt, the 4-9 Redskins traveled to New York with 1/3 of their starting offense. In a game that the Giants needed to win the Skins managed to win by 13. The Giants had gotten their front four back and should have made Rex Grossman more uncomfortable than Paula Deen in a Pilates class.
I can’t explain why it happened, but I think it was that loss that eventually propelled the Giants to Super Bowl XLVI. In the parlance of 12 step programs, they had finally hit bottom. When they woke up on December 19th the Giants had to look in the mirror and admit that they had a problem. Losing twice to the Redskins was the NFL equivalent to blowing a hobo for beer money. “Hi My name is Osi and I lost to the Redskins twice.”
After the first loss, they saw themselves like a cocaine user who thinks they can do it occasionally. Antrelle Rolle saying “If we played them 100 times, they might win five.”, was the same as “Yeah I gave my dealer a handjob, but I can quit any time.” The second loss made them put down the crack pipe once and for all and turn their team around.
I’m not sure what, if anything it says about Washington, but to be the League’s rock bottom is shameful. And Devin Thomas is more likely to get a Super Bowl ring than anybody on the Redskins roster.
“Hi my name is Danny, and I’m addicted to overpriced free agents.”