Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Andrew Luck Sweepstakes -- Preseason Week 2 Update

NFL QB or sex offender? You decide!
One week ago, I handicapped what will likely be the most interesting subplot of the season for about a third of the league; the Andrew Luck Sweepstakes. With another week of preseason in the books, let's look at where everyone stands.

Note: I ranked the teams last week. Since I've been clear about my 'preseason is meaningless' thoughts, I figured I wouldn't bother ranking anything this time. This is just a pure update and they are arrayed in no particular order.

Washington Redskins

Current Starter: John Beck
Last Game: 14-17, 140YDS
Also in the mix: Rex Grossman
Last Game: 7/12, 88YDS, 0TD, 1INT
Summary: Ironic that Washington pops up first right after I explain that the teams are in no particular order. Oh well. It is what it is...unlike John Beck, who masqueraded as a real life NFL QB against the Colts. Of course, it was against the Colts, who kinda suck at defense and who don't give a crap about the preseason. Don't get too excited 'Skins fans, you still only scored 16 points. On a more positive note, Rex Grossman returned to form, throwing an INT and having a QB rating under 50. We knew you'd be back Sexy Rexy! Safe to say, Washington is still VERY interested in Luck. VERY!

Detroit Lions

Current Starter: Matthew Stafford
Last Game: 6-10, 85YDS, 1TD
Summary: Stafford didn't end up on the IR after the game, so positives all around! Seriously though, Stafford is throwing the ball really well. Again, it's only preseason, so don't start thinking Super Bowl, Lions fans. But hey, for a franchise that went 0-16 just a few years ago, seeing your #1 overall pick perform like this can only be a positive.

Cleveland Browns

Current Starter: Colt McCoy
Last Game: 10-18, 96YDS, 3TD
Summary: COLT!!! He's so amazing! I love him! OK, I'll calm down now. Like Stafford, McCoy is having a fantastic preseason. More importantly, it looks like his shoulder is in much better shape than last year. We'll see what happens when the real games start, but for now, he certainly looks like the answer in Cleveland. Here's my one gripe -- GET THE BALL DOWNFIELD! He's never going to be a great downfield passer like Peyton Manning, but his effectiveness will always be limited as long as his Y/A hover in the 5.0's. Maybe it's the personnel around him, maybe it's the playcalling...whatever it is, it's a trend that must end.

Miami Dolphins

Current Starter: Chad Henne
Last Game: 15-24, 194YDS
Summary: Henne wasn't terrible, but he wasn't good either. At this point, you have to think he's literally terrified to make big mistakes. If that's the case, then he has 0% chance of succeeding...which is a big drop from the 1% chance he had before.

Carolina Panthers

Current Starter: Cam Newton
Last Game: 7-14, 66YDS
Also in the mix: Jimmy Clausen
Last Game: 9-15, 69YDS
Summary: The good news is that neither Newton nor Clausen threw a horrible INT. The bad news is that they still managed to suck. If I'm gonna rip on Colt McCoy's Y/A, then I'm gonna go borderline homicidal about the combined 4.7Y/A these two clowns put up. Those are junior high school numbers! Thankfully, after getting praised for (insert ESPN's made up reason to praise Cam Newton here) last week, Newton took a lot of hits for his performance against Miami. His accuracy, pocket presence, and ability to read defenses are every bit as bad as I expected. This is going to be a fun year!

Arizona Cardinals

Current Starter: Kevin Kolb
Last Game: 6-11, 80YDS
Summary: We all know Arizona isn't going to get the #1 pick, so I don't even know why I'm including them. Honestly, I can't even rip Kolb because he's been every bit the average QB I thought he was. What a boring team! We want John Skelton!!!

Jacksonville Jaguars

Current Starter: David Garrard
Last Game: 7-12, 99YDS, 0TD, 1INT
QB of the Future: Blaine Gabbart
Last Game: 11-23, 96YDS
Summary: 11-23 passing?! That's Cam Newton territory right there! I gave Gabbart a small measure of credit last week for "looking like he belonged on an NFL field..." Wow, that's a back-handed compliment if I ever heard one! I didn't even realize it came off so mean! This week, I can't even muster up one of those for him. He was so bad! Yes, with David Garrard already at mid-season form and Blaine Gabbart giving us a taste of the future, I'd say Jacksonville is is in a pretty good spot for these sweepstakes.

Tennessee Titans

Current Starter: Matt Hasselbeck
Last Game: 7-9, 74YDS
QB of the Future: Jake Locker
Last Game: 8-18, 82YDS, 0TD, 1INT
Summary: Much like Gabbart, Locker looked great in his first preseason game and had everyone (not me) jumping on the Jake Locker bandwagon. Never mind that we had four years of inconsistent play at Washington to go on. Never mind that we had hundreds of poorly thrown, inaccurate passes to draw conclusions from. No, one preseason game is all we needed, apparently. Well, welcome back to earth, Jake Locker. I expect you'll be staying awhile?

Oakland Raiders

Current Starter: Jason Campbell
Last Game: 5-7, 74YDS
Summary: In a pre-cursor to future events (like, very near future), Jason Campbell is already banged up. Turns out he doesn't have a concussion, but don't worry, he'll be dead soon. After him...umm...Trent Edwards? (Sound of every Raiders fan throwing up in the corner)

San Francisco 49ers

Current Starter: Alex Smith
Last Game: 8-13. 126YDS, 0TD, 1INT
QB of the Future: Colin Kaepernick
Last Game: 6-8, 52YDS
Summary: I don't really have too much to add here for Alex Smith. Pretty decent outing by Kaepernick, but nothing spectacular.

Buffalo Bills

Current Starter: Ryan Fitzpatrick
Last Game: 6-16, 44YDS, 0TD, 1INT
Also in the mix: Tyler Thigpen
Last Game: 11-20, 118YDS, 1TD
Summary: Never a good sign when Tyler Thigpen falls into the "Also in the mix" category. Fitzpatrick was absolutely brutal against a terrible Denver defense. Preseason or no, that's not a good thing.

Denver Broncos

Current Starter: Kyle Orton
Last Game: 10-13, 135YDS, 1TD
Also in the mix: Brady Quinn
Last Game: 10-16, 130YDS, 1TD, 1INT
Former QB of the future: Tim Tebow
Last Game: 1-2, 10YDS
Summary: It's a rough week for Tebow fans, after seeing our hero demoted to the third string...behind Brady Quinn! Taking my illogical love out of the equation, it's pretty clear that Orton is far and away better than his competition. One of the positives of having Orton is that you pretty much know what you're going to get. He's solid, he doesn't make a ton of mistakes, and he'll give you chances to win games. One of the negatives is that he's good enough to keep them from landing Luck.
Side Note: I'm totally serious when I say that Jacksonville or Buffalo should trade for Tebow. They need a shot in the arm and you might very well strike gold at the meager cost of a 4th round pick.

Minnesota Vikings

Current Starter: Donovan McNabb
Last Game: 6-8, 81YDS
QB of the Future: Christian Ponder
Last Game: 6-12, 63YDS
Summary: Once again, Ponder doesn't totally look like an NFL QB. Honestly, given the level of experience he got at Florida State, that's a bit surprising. It's not like I ever thought he'd be good, but I thought he'd at least look like he knew what he was doing. Apparently the ACC isn't quite the NFC...who would've thought?

Seattle Seahawks

Current Starter: Tarvaris Jackson
Last Game: 11-21, 75YDS, 0TD, 1INT
Also in the mix: Charlie Whitehurst
Last Game: 14-19, 97YDS, 1TD
Summary: Here's the real big development from preseason Week 2...according to John Clayton, Charlie Whitehurst is closing the gap between he and Tarvaris Jackson. Shocker. After this classic T-Jax performance, I'd say the fact that there even is a gap is completely ridiculous. On the plus side for Seattle fans, Whitehurst played pretty well. And you're still going to lose a lot of games...

That's all for this week! Check back next Wednesday for the preseason Week 3 update!


  1. I can't believe that you said Locker looked great in his first preseason game. This is seriously driving me insane. Everyone looks at the box score and thinks he was amazing. Listen, I'm a Vikings fan so I watched the whole game and Locker got half his stats on one fluke play. Locker starts by fumbling the snap, then he somehow picks the ball up off the ground and chucks it downfield to a wide open reciever who was supposed to be covered by the Vikings 4th CB, but instead the corner stopped after seeing the ball on the ground. This TD was 45 yeards which was just over half of the 89 total yards he had. Without this crazy play his Y/A would have been 4.89, which I think you would classify as horrible.

  2. The fact that he STILL didn't throw it to the other team is impressive to me. It's Jake Locker we're talking about, not Tom Brady. Any positive play is something.

  3. Can we update Oakland's QB mix now? I can't stop hating Al Davis for dooming another (albeit one of several tainted) former OSU players to a terrible least somewhere else he could have held a clipboard for awhile and maybe learned a thing or two...

  4. No, I refuse to include Pryor in the mix. He's not, and never should be. Also, I'm pretty sure Pryor's lack of ability and brains actually doomed him to failure...though Al Davis certainly won't help that.

  5. Hey, can we update the column with week 3 already, so that we can officially inaugurate Josh McCown as 'in the mix'?