The idea for this article came to mind right after I read an article or really a thought from some writer from Sports Illustrated and then a couple of coattail writers regurgitating what the original writer had said. And this will include all of J-Russ' detractors.
I have seen so many articles written about our quarterback saying that he has played 2 years. We all know how incorrect that statement is. He has played one full season and sparingly his rookie season.
The weight issue really bugs me! Why? who cares how much he weighs, as long as the kid can still perform his duties at quarterback this should not be an issue! Mr. Davis did not draft a Michael Vick type player who takes off if a hot dog wrapper gets in his peripheral vision! He picked a quarterback!
What do I feel makes JaMarcus the "guy"? His arm strength for one, the guy can throw what 75 yards from his knees. Big deal that doesnt mean anything! Ok how about what he has endured in his short time in the league!
He has had 3 different playcallers and 2 head coaches. He never has spread the blame and quietly took a beating from Lame Kiffin. He appears to be very mature for someone in his position.
The guy has the tools and now his coach and owner are putting the pieces around him for him to succeed not fail. As Sonny stated in his article, Cables comments he feels were meant to entice Russell to improve and prove the naysayers wrong, not as a negative comment like the media is making it out to be.
I believe this kid has all the makings of what McNabb, Culpepper, and even Garcia already are. Through in Gannon maybe, but to get there J-Russ has to become more outspoken.
He has already shown his playmaking ability. There have been errant throws, over-throwing his receivers on the long passes and not having the touch on the easy passes, that will come with more experience and getting comfortable with his receivers.
He only runs when necessary, just like Gannon. JaMarcus does not look to run, but only when he has to. Again like Gannon as well as McNabb.He has the size and arm like Daunte, now we just need a consistent receiver other than Miller.
Sure there are times when a team picks the player that automatically fits (Matt Ryan/Flacco) but, how often does this happen really?
I realize in today's game players don't have the luxury of figuring it out. They are expected to know the playbook as soon as they are drafted and labeled a bust if they don't know the verbiage by mini-camp.
Now to what got me worked up and the whole purpose of this article. The SI writer was commenting on how when Jeff Garcia joins a team he has somehow made it onto the field during the season, and that that could possibly happen with the Raiders.
This to me is garbage! JaMarcus would have to play worse than Todd Marinovich did to get yanked. The only way Garcia will see the field is if Russell gets injured or in blow-out games.
How can some writer say what could happen? Yes there is the history with Garcia at each stop,but how does this guy know if our quarterback has been really getting to know the playbook? JLH made the comment during camp last weekend that he sees JaMarcus growing, starting to recognize what the defense is doing.
Granted that is one players view and not a coach. And Jerry Macdonald has been taking shots at Russell about his weight and not taking the extra time to work with his receivers.
Another report I read following camp last week stated that JR was having trouble with the short and intermediate passes. What quarterback doesn't make the errant pass? I remember seeing Gannon throw at the receivers feet, Manning has done it! This does not concern me.
Now on to the Garcia issue. Three of the teams he played for 49ers, Detroit and Tampa, who really did these teams have to lead them? Obviously Jeff stepped up and showed he was the clear and obvious choice. Philadelphia, he only got to play because McNabb was injured or else he would not have even made it onto the field.
As far as replacing JR, not going to happen! The writer from SI pointed out that two recent first round quarterbacks have been replaced by veterans, opening the door for Garcia to take over as the starter.
Lets look at these three players. Vince Young- the guy basically had some kind of mental breakdown and needed time to get himself right mentally. Luckily, for the Titans everything clicked and Collins was able to perform for them. No comment on his tenure as a Raider.
Matt Leinart- he was at best a great college QB and doesn't appear to be progressing towards being "The Man". And this was another situation where the veteran did an outstanding job after taking over.
It amazes me that we follow a team that really limits the media access to its facilities yet these media lunkheads think they know the facts without ever talking to anybody to get the true story! Chris Mortensen and any BSPN football "expert".
From what I saw the last couple of games last season JaMarcus was gaining confidence and figuring it out. Even Rich Gannon made the comment during one of those gains that he announced about JR growing as a quarterback and improving.
This is the year where he proves why he was the number one pick and all those who have criticized our QB since he was picked, will have to shut their mouths or admit that JaMarcus Russell is blossoming as a quarterback for the Raiders.