Twelve situations worth watching closely in 2007
Posted: Thursday May 17, 2007 10:43AM; Updated: Thursday May 17, 2007 12:25PM
Nothing gets chewed over more every NFL offseason than quarterback questions. Only Indianapolis and New England seem immune to the constant pattern of change, speculation and potential controversies at this position.
Here are the 12 most interesting quarterback situations to watch unfold in 2007:
Rolling the dice
Minnesota -- Maybe no one in the NFL this season is taking the bungee-like leap of faith that Vikings coach/daredevil Brad Childress is ready to embark upon with second-year veteran Tarvaris Jackson. Minnesota's quarterback depth chart owns a combined 12 NFL starts -- Jackson (two), Brooks Bollinger (nine) and Drew Henson (one) -- and (gulp) just three career wins. If any team in recent NFL history has entered a season with less of a track record to lean on at the game's most pivotal position, I really can't imagine when it would have been.
Atlanta -- The Falcons received a veritable windfall from Houston in the Matt Schaub trade. But I'm guessing they'll have to remind themselves of that point on an hourly basis if anything happens to starter Michael Vick early this season due to injury, or say, league suspension? Then again, it's not like Schaub was a proven commodity as a backup. He was more about promise than production, and let's not forget that the newly signed Joey Harrington did win five of his 11 starts in Miami in 2006.
All I know is that Vick better hit the ground running this season (I mean, passing), because if either Harrington or ex-Georgia Bulldog D.J. Shockley happens to win in his absence, that short leash that the Falcons say they'll have Vick on this season might grow noticeably shorter.
Houston -- Texans fans don't have David Carr to kick around any more. But is that the good news or the bad news in Houston, where Carr was held responsible for everything shy of the Oilers leaving town in the first place? So desperate were the Texans to end the Carr era that they have pinned their future hopes at the position on a guy who is 0-2 in his two career starts, with a 69.2 passer rating in his limited NFL action. Schaub has talent, and the odds are he'll quickly make us forget what little he accomplished in Atlanta as Vick's backup. But if he doesn't, he wouldn't be the first career No. 2 to wilt under the glare of the No. 1 spotlight. If he should struggle, one intriguing option to keep tabs of is rookie Jared Zabransky, of Boise State fame.
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