Picture credit: Bucs O.C. Byron Leftwich – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
I can’t remember when it began.
But one day the NFL (and our society) started throwing young college men into the fire.
It used to be that these young men wouldn’t start a game for at least a year.
They would be mentored by the coaching staff, maybe even a legendary Q.B. on his way to retirement.
I feel that the expectations of the League and fans have hurt the sport.
Here is a quote from Byron Leftwich on the topic and I obviously agree with his take.
“Now I don’t want to speak on anybody’s players, so I don’t want to talk about Josh Rosen, but I have a lot of respect for what he can do as a football player, I really do. But the quarterback position is turning into a right now position, where it’s never been that. It’s never been that you drafted a quarterback – we say it’s the hardest position in sports and then we draft a kid, not him, but just in general whoever comes out, and we throw them in the lineup. We’ve got to have an understanding that this kid may be only 21, 22, 23 when we drafted him we said he had these issues here and there and then we play him.
Say you start him in Week 1. You just said we drafted this kid and he had this and got to get him better at that. A lot of those things you can’t get better in three months, right? So, you stick a kid out there to lead the franchise and this kid is 19 years old and hell he barely knows what’s going on and you put him out there in a National Football League game you can lose people that way. You can really lose quarterbacks – there’s been some very talented quarterbacks that have been drafted high that really should’ve been, could have been Hall of Fame, Pro Bowl type guys that were put in situations early where they had no chance of really succeeding.
So, just having the opportunity to just go through that, I see that difference. When I’m in this position I see it completely different, because it’s a hard job to play quarterback in this league especially when you’re 22, 21, 20-years old, that’s difficult to ask anyone. You look at any other position, you don’t really do that, but the quarterback which is the hardest position. So, I’m a little understanding of how difficult it is to get the job done, especially at a high level.
So, I try to coach him that way, really try to coach and help the people. Help the players as much as possible, so they one day can play at a Pro Bowl, Hall of Fame level all the time, but I’m smart enough to know that’s really difficult or tough to happen. Especially early on in the quarterback career.”
That makes sense! That’s why when I look at what Winston has done at his age, it makes every person who cuts him down look foolish!
You can disagree, but after reading Leftwich’s statment, your “opinion” doesn’t really hold water.