While perusing the interweb yesterday I came across PFT’s checklist for the Oakland Raiders. No real surprise that re-signing Zach Miller tops the list. What is shocking is the suggestion of going after Vince Young.
Excuse me? Why?
I’m on the record having said Jason Campbell is not the long term solution. Clearly Al Davis has got his work to do in order to keep last season’s momentum going to next season and beyond. Perhaps Campbell will blossom without the worry of Bruce Gradkowski staring at the playbook over his shoulder. First we’ve got to get a resolution to the lockout before crossing that bridge.
But never mind the long term, in the short term VY is as good a decision as handing the Dodgers over to the McCourts. Some people just weren’t built to be in positions that require tough decisions to be made under direst.
Let’s get a couple things clear. Young is not a terrible QB. In fact he’s coming off his best season as a pro and has shown some real progress. His skill set is as unique as you’ll ever find. And for the record if we’re still entertaining Jerry McDonald’s theory on drafting Terrelle Pryor – which I’m also against – I’d take the proven Young over the gamble of TP any day.
All that being said, Young just doesn’t have the mental makeup to be a big time QB in the NFL. I’m not even going down the road of his supposed manic moment a few years back. No need for a blogger to try and play psychiatrist. Let’s just stick to what we see on the field.
Just imagine how upset JC must have been when Tom Cable kept swapping noodle armed Gradkowski in and out of the lineup at Campbell’s expense. Now how often did you hear JC complain about it? Sure, he said he’d like to be the full-time starter but went no further than that.
Now ask yourself how VY would have handled the same situation. I can tell you how he would because he went through the same process with Kerry Collins.
Again, just to be clear I was behind both Campbell and Young last season. To me Cable had no business jerking around the better option just as Jeff Fisher had no business doing the same.
Still Young’s reaction, which has included tantrums and tossing of gear into the stands, doesn’t exactly scream LEADER.
Plus there is another added dimension of Young still not quite as comfortable under center as you’d like an NFL signal caller to be. Now he’s had some great games and some amazing moments including come from behind victories and gut check performances. But those are few and far between.
Now if there is one major argument to be made for VY it would be what he could bring to Oakland’s running game. The thought of having Young and Darren McFadden in some kind of Wildcat or read-option formation is very tantalizing. Beyond that I’m rolling with Campbell.
If there is one thing the entire #2 debacle has taught me it’s that talent alone cannot create a franchise QB. Young has some serious game but how he handles the other pressures of playing quarterback in the NFL still makes him yet another short term solution.
Now if Mr. Davis sees Young as a better backup then Kyle Boller – which he clearly is – and Young is willing to play second fiddle with no qualms then sign him up. Beyond that, banking on Young as a future of the franchise cornerstone is insulting at best.
The argument will be made that AD likes the QB reclamation projects. History has shown Mr. Davis has had great success in finding value on the NFL scrapheap. However he should limit his projects to one at a time. Campbell needs one full season as a starter before it can be decided if getting another project in the works is necessary.
Given all he’s done this offseason and what he did last season Campbell has proven to be much better than Young with regards to the intangibles of playing quarterback. That, to me, is worth much more than the intrigue of Young’s physical capabilities. In the right situation Young could be great for some franchise out there, just not Oakland at least not at this point in time.
Tags: Al Davis, Oakland Raiders, Raider Nation, Fans, Popular, Featured Bruce Gradkowski Darren McFadden Jason Campbell Jeff Fisher Kerry Collins Kyle Boller Terrelle Pryor Tom Cable Vince Young Zach Miller