Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

20 Nov 2009

ESPN: When To Give Up On Young QBs

Here's an ESPN feature on pinpointing the point of no return for young quarterbacks.

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 20 Nov 2009

10 comments, Last at 23 Nov 2009, 10:39am by Noah Arkadia


by AndyE :: Fri, 11/20/2009 - 12:51pm

It would be nice if you labelled Insider content to save the clickthrough.

by Eddo :: Fri, 11/20/2009 - 1:38pm

Everything labeled "ESPN" is Insider content.

by huston720 :: Fri, 11/20/2009 - 3:42pm

Nice article, though it is interesting that it seems like the QBs listed as having a chance to still be ok match up well with what the Lewin QB prediction system thinks. If I recall if thought all three QBs from the Lienert/Young/Cutler draft would be good, and that Quinn would be good while Russell would not be.

My question is that it states that two below replacement level seasons is probably enough to doom a QB, but how do we account for sporadic playing time? for Quinn he now only has something like 7 starts, if he goes the rest of the year that will be 14 starts overall. Does that count as a single season? Meaning that even if he was below replacement level this season he deserves a chance next year, or is 14 starts over several years enough to make an evaluation?

As a Browns fan, with the upcoming scehdule I'm guessing that we will know one way or another on Quinn at the end of the year.

by Key19 :: Fri, 11/20/2009 - 10:49pm

I'd say investing 32 games into a first round pick isn't asking all that much of a team...

by Sifter :: Sat, 11/21/2009 - 1:21am

^We'll see when the Browns and Raiders pick in the top 5 next year. I personally would give Quinn and Russell one more year to prove themselves and where the focus in training camp is on their development. Or maybe that's at least one year of focus in Brady's case, poor guy... but I'd be bringing in a veteran to compete that's for sure just in case there is no development shown by either of them.

by JimZipCode :: Sat, 11/21/2009 - 3:26am

I don't see why anyone would give Russell one more game "to prove himself", let alone one more year. What a waste.


by Whatev (not verified) :: Sat, 11/21/2009 - 3:01pm

The problem is that there are serious deficiencies in a lot of other aspects of the offense. There simply aren't enough draft picks to fix all those problems, and rookie QBs are easily... damaged... by time playing on really bad teams. Given that, I think it makes more sense to try to fix those problems at the risk of leaving Russell in than it does to recruit a new first-round rookie QB and set him on the path to Russellness.

by Sifter :: Sat, 11/21/2009 - 5:48pm

3 reasons stand out: 1) already mentioned, his receivers are awful. So if Al gives him even ONE guy he can trust that might help, 2) his salary. The Raiders have so much invested in him that drafting another QB in the top 5 next year would be insane, 3) Coaching. I'm guessing Cable will be gone next year and whoever his replacement is will want to at least check out Russell and see what he can do. Coaches always think they can resurrect 1st round busts, it's like an ego thing - just look at how long David Terrell stuck around the NFL.

But I'd sure as hell be bringing Jeff Garcia back to let him know that if he sucks, he's gone.

by Scott C :: Sun, 11/22/2009 - 3:44pm

So, this system would have given up on Drew Brees, from what I can tell.

Though mabybe that first year (lower than 0 DVOA) was above replacement barely.

by Noah Arkadia :: Mon, 11/23/2009 - 10:39am

Well, it can't perfect, or we wouldn't need GMs and scouts