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Green Bay Packers: Who Should Replace Graham Harrell at Backup Quarterback?

Dave RadcliffeContributor IIIJuly 30, 2016

Green Bay Packers: Who Should Replace Graham Harrell at Backup Quarterback?

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    Many people say that being a backup quarterback is the best job in sports—getting paid hundreds of thousands of dollars just to suit up every week and stand on the sidelines.

    What many of these people may not realize, however, is how being a backup quarterback is also one of the most important jobs in sports.

    The Green Bay Packers know this all too well—first with Aaron Rodgers succeeding Brett Favre, and then with Matt Flynn filling in admirably on a few different occasions for Rodgers.

    Now, Flynn is gone and the Packers are left with Graham Harrell, the 27-year-old who has never really been higher than third on the depth chart. Harrell was a bit of an unknown coming into the season, but now it's beginning to come into focus that Harrell doesn't have what it takes to back up Mr. Rodgers.

    To be fair, Harrell isn't allotted the talent Rodgers gets to enjoy around him while he's in the game, but Harrell's statistics in his two preseason games—27-of-51, 235 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions—leave a lot to be desired.

    Call it a rash decision, but the Packers may want to look into finding a new backup for Rodgers, so here are five guys who fit the bill.

5. Matt Leinart

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    Matt Leinart to the Packers may seem unlikely considering he just made the move from Houston to Oakland, but consider this:

    Leinart is currently signed to a one-year, $700,000 deal, so the Raiders cutting him isn't the most inconceivable proposition in the world.

    But why would the Packers want to bring in Leinart, a career underachiever?

    He may be an underachiever, but he's been around the block. At 29, he's used to the backup role and has been the second-string quarterback for parts of the last five seasons.

    Not only that, but the Raiders are committed—mostly financially—to Carson Palmer, so Leinart doesn't appear to be going anywhere in that organization. He's a security blanket at best, and although Terrelle Pryor is still a big question mark, he's someone fans are more excited to see than Leinart.

    In closing, Leinart is a better option than Harrell, even though this didn't look all that fun.

4. Rex Grossman

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    Packers fans would be the first to tell you they don't want anything to do with Sexy Rexy, but the experience factor comes into play for the case of Rex Grossman backing up Aaron Rodgers.

    Rex Grossman didn't really get a fair shot in Washington last season, and now he's "mentoring" Robert Griffin III while buried behind the second overall pick of this year's draft.

    First of all, can't the Redskins find a better mentor? And secondly, with RG3 in the nation's capital and Grossman only signed through 2012, the former Chicago Bear can't tutor the former Baylor Bear for long—he is highly expendable. 

    He's 31 and has had plenty of experience both as a starter and a backup, and while Green Bay has witnessed firsthand just how awful Grossman can be at times, he still provides much more support in the backup role than Harrell.

3. Matt Hasselbeck

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    How about it, folks? Matt Hasselbeck returning to his former role as backup quarterback on the Green Bay Packers?

    The 36-year-old from Tennessee is feeling a lot of heat from young gun Jake Locker in what is one of the closest competitions this preseason.

    Should the Titans side with Locker, there's nothing left for Hasselbeck in Nashville.

    That's not to say there would be much for him in Green Bay, but Hasselbeck has proved he still has what it takes to play in this league. The experience factor greatly favors Hasselbeck not only in comparison with Harrell, but with everyone else on this list.

    Of course, the Titans would probably want to hold onto Hasselbeck even if Locker wins the job as an insurance policy and mentor, but the Packers have several enticing entities, including at wide receiver, a position Tennessee could be in need of come opening week.

    His contract ($11 million remaining over two years) makes this an unlikely scenario, but Hasselbeck would look good wearing the green and gold once again.

2. Colt McCoy

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    This guy has been receiving the most buzz when it comes to who the Packers should pursue as Harrell's replacement, and there's some substance to these rumors.

    The Browns have seemingly given up on Colt McCoy after just two seasons by bringing in Brandon Weeden and anointing him as the starter.

    McCoy (25) is three years younger than Weeden and didn't even have that bad of a season statistically in 2011 on an offense with virtually no threats.

    Why the Browns are giving up on McCoy so early boggles the mind, but the Packers would gladly swoop in and claim the former Longhorn in exchange for a draft pick.

    He didn't get all that much time in the recent preseason game in Green Bay to put on a rehearsal, but he still looked a heck of a lot better than Harrell.

    He's younger than Harrell and has plenty more NFL game experience, so he's certainly someone who should be on Green Bay's radar.

1. Matt Moore

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    Neglected. Disregarded. Overlooked. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you none other than Matt Moore.

    Passed over time and time again despite continuing to perform, Miami is at it again after drafting Ryan Tannehill to essentially replace Moore right off the bat.

    It's not looking good for Moore, who also has David Garrard lurking around despite his recent injury.

    Yes, the position battle is ongoing, but it's inevitable that Tannehill will win the starting job and Moore will again be the odd man out.

    Despite Moore being overqualified to be a second- or even third-stringer, the Packers would gladly take in Moore's talents and have him serve as the backup to Aaron Rodgers. The Dolphins don't have enough room for Tannehill, Moore AND Garrard, so I could easily see them ditching Moore.

    And that's when Green Bay should take action. Matt Moore is the best option to replace Graham Harrell as the Packers' backup quarterback. 

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