The Washington Redskins have not had a franchise quarterback since…. I’m not really sure, to be honest. The past dozen seasons, the position has been quite the undesirable job: registering somewhere around an average of 45 sacks a year (Campbell’s last full season I believe there were 62). Since the break up of the gritty group of men known as The Hogs, there really hasn’t been much of a front to protect the guy taking snaps or much less block for the guy running the ball either. The offensive line has been a problem since the exit of Gibbs 1.0, but the quarterback position has been a huge question mark in D.C. as well.
Rex Grossman has made a plethora of mistakes here and in Chicago, though he’s done a lot of good. He’s a high risk high reward type of player, but he’s not a “Franchise Quarterback” by a mile. The team trusts him more than John Beck, but even the sometimes sketchy play calling offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, even admitted that they’re still looking for their guy.
Could they have had their guy before trading away draft picks to Philly for the last leg of Donovan McNabb? The guy coulda had a shot if they protected him. During his tenure, the best protection he had happened when a 220 lb running back by the name of Clinton Portis (self proclaimed “sixth offensive lineman”) was sacrificing himself taking hits for the guy. After he went down with a groin injury, the number of sacks McNabb suffered per game tripled for an average of 30 more lost yards per game. But before McNabb, there was Jason Campbell. A guy who valiantly hung around for 5 years before being notified on the phone by a reporter that his organization had just traded for McNabb (I’d request to leave too after all that). Alas, he didn’t have much help on blocking either. After leaving for Oakland, in an interview, he remarked, “Yall still think I’m the problem?”
Before Campbell, there was Todd Collins, Mark Brunell, Patrick Ramsey, blah, blah blah. It’s like someone puts the quarterbacks’ names on a wheel at the beginning of the season, takes a spin, and goes with it. Aside from not having a lot of offensive line help, there’s no consistency at all at the QB position. So being in a locker room where every year your fearless leader is a different guy can be quite frustrating. Guys lose their jobs due to their performance and then it’s on to the next one. Still, no franchise guy.
The Denver Broncos have found their franchise guy. It took poor play from Kyle Orton and demands from the fans to get him in the game, but Tim Tebow is playing lights out right now. He’s not the most talented. He probably doesn’t have the best footwork. Probably not the fastest. May not have the best “cardiovascular endurance” either. But John Elway has something that Dan Snyder needs. Not another QB from Florida (we’ve got one of those). But a guy that makes every single person in that locker room believe. The un-teachable something special that makes him and his team play beyond their talent level to succeed when the odds are stacked against them. Is it RG3? Is it Flynn? Who knows. They’re both talented. But let’s hope and pray Shanford And Son are also looking past a QB rating and a few sick TD passes for that intangible quality that makes a Franchise Quarterback.
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