There’s nothing that can alter your take on a team before the season begins than a good quarterback controversy. Even the hint of one can drop a team’s odds in the futures. Staying up on the latest when one of these shows its ugly head is absolutely crucial to the gambling community.
I mean, let’s face it. If you’re team were really in the running for a Super Bowl crown this season, it wouldn’t have a quarterback controversy. The only time that doesn’t apply is when an elite QB gets hurt and is ready to come back mid-season only to see his replacement putting up such incredible numbers that it’s hard to switch back. Think back to Brady/Bledsoe, although calling Bledsoe anything close to elite is a stretch.
So applying this to the upcoming season, we see a few areas where a QB controversy is already making headlines. Let’s start in the NFL with Arizona. Warner is gone, so you’re looking at Leinert vs. Derek Anderson. Leinert really should’ve overtaken Warner at least a season ago, so you have to question his ability to step up now. That being said, I still have faith in his talent, and it’s not like he still doesn’t have Fitzgerald downfield as a nice, big target. Anderson is coming from banishment in Cleveland, looking for a fresh start, as well. Anderson is a turnover liability compared to Leinert, as well. Right now, it’s Leinert’s spot to lose, but don’t think he can’t or won’t lose it.
I’ll skip Buffalo since I already covered them recently and stay with the NFC in Carolina. The Panthers predictably dumped Jake Dellhome (wish I’d never drafted him in fantasy football last year), and have Matt Moore penciled in as the No. 1. The only other guy in the mix is Jimmy Clausen, and you have to mention him because of his draft position. The guy is also crazy talented. Still, the Panthers will likely give Moore a full season to run with this sucker and sink or swim…or at least half a season. If he doesn’t stick somewhere around that 6-2 record he currently holds, the powers that be in Carolina might get an itchy trigger finger for JC.
And I can’t end this without talking about Denver. Poor Kyle Orton just can’t catch a break. First it was getting no respect in Chicago (like, none, even WITH a .750 winning percentage). Then it was watching his great first half last year tank like nothing I’ve ever seen, and now it’s being forced to compete again for a starting role. Although, I’m not so sure he deserves to be a starter based on talent alone anyway. To make matters worse, you know Denver gambled on Tebow that high just so they COULD throw him in there. So Orton not only has to look over his shoulder on the field, but watch that owner’s box, as well. And, don’t forget, Brady Quinn is on this team, too. Remember him? He threw 4 or 5 TDs in one game last year and somehow became relevant again.