The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: QBs, Preseason Week 1

Michael WhooleySenior Writer IAugust 17, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - AUGUST 13:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots throws a pass against the Philadelphia Eagles on August 13, 2009 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Now that the majority of the first week of the NFL preseason has come and gone it’s time to take a quick look at quarterbacks for each team and see how they did.  We’ll keep you updated each week of the preseason to see how quarterbacks are progressing—or regressing—and let you know what kind of impact it will have in fantasy football.  We’ll take a look at “the good, the bad and the ugly.”



Tom Brady (New England Patriots)—In his first action since tearing his ACL last year, Brady looked superb as he was 10-for-15 for 100 yards with two touchdowns and one interception.  Brady showed no ill effects from the injury and looked strong in the pocket.  Both of his touchdowns went to tight end Chris Baker.  On the interception, Brady was trying to hit Randy Moss, who was in single coverage, on a bomb down the left sideline, but left it short and Sheldon Brown grabbed it.  Brady mostly operated out of the shotgun, so it will be interesting to see how he plays under center.  But, remember back in 2007, the record-breaking season for Brady, he spent a lot of his time in the shotgun, so perhaps it’s not something to care much about after all.

Trent Edwards (Buffalo Bills)—For as bad as Edwards and the rest of the Bills offense looked in the Hall of Fame game, the first week of the preseason was a lot kinder to them.  The new, no-huddle offense looked a lot better as Edwards went 10-for-10 for 79 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions.  Edwards appeared a lot more comfortable with the offense and was precise with the ball.  It will be interesting to see where the Buffalo offense goes if it can keep progressing like this.

Joe Flacco and Troy Smith (Baltimore Ravens)—Flacco looked great against a supposedly rebuilt Washington Redskins defense as he was 9-for-15 for 103 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.  Flacco looked more comfortable in the pocket than he did last year and his throws looked good as well.  Smith has looked good in the past in very limited play, and looked good again in the win over the Redskins.  Smith was 14-for-30 for 200 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions.  Smith was accurate with the ball, especially on his 19-yard touchdown pass to Justin Harper, which split the safety and cornerback perfectly.

Mark Sanchez (New York Jets)—The rookie made his debut with the second team against the the St. Louis rams and looked impressive.  His first pass as a professional was a 48-yard strike to David Clowney down the right sideline that he placed perfectly over the cornerback’s head.  Later, he led the Jets on a touchdown drive.  Altogether, he finished 3-for-4 for 88 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.  He has already been named the starter for the Jets’ second preseason game against the Ravens.

Matt Schaub (Houston Texans)—Schaub and the Texans’ first-team offense looked pretty good against Kansas City.  Schaub was perfect on passing, as he was 7-for-7 for 70 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.  His passes were on the money and he spread the ball around, but it would’ve been nice to see him throw a touchdown against a weak Kansas City Chiefs secondary.  There was one play where the Chiefs sent a blitz at Schaub and one player came in untouched.  Schaub had little time to react, but appeared completely composed as to what to do.  Hopefully, his past injuries aren't inhibiting his decision-making process when he’s in the pocket.

Brady Quinn (Cleveland Browns)—Quinn went 7-for-11 with 68 yards, one interception and no touchdowns.  He actually looked pretty good for the Browns against a revamped Green Bay defense.  He should’ve had a touchdown, but Braylon Edwards dropped a pass that him hit in the chest in the back of the end zone.  Quinn’s pick was a result of trying to find Edwards again in the back of the end zone on a forced throw into good coverage.  The Packers had good coverage all night, but Quinn was able to hit his spots well and spread the ball around to multiple receivers.



Matt Cassel (Kansas City Chiefs)—Cassel’s debut as a Chief was one to forget as he was 2-for-5 for 15 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.  Cassel and the offense looked out of sync as the Chiefs failed to advance past the 50-yard line with their new quarterback at the helm.  Cassel appeared hesitant and indecisive when he was in the game and his backups, Brodie Croyle and Tyler Thigpen, looked a lot better even though they were playing against the second and third-team defenses.

Kellen Clemens (New York Jets)—As good as Mark Sanchez looked, his top competition for the starting quarterback position for the Jets, Clemens, looked equally as bad.  Clemens, who started the game, completed all four of his passes but they went for just 27 yards.  Furthermore, he lost a fumble as he was being sacked.  Sanchez has already been named the starter for the second preseason game, which is not a good sign for Clemens.

Jay Cutler (Chicago Bears)—After everything that went down in the offseason for Cutler to become a Bear, his debut was less than stellar.  Cutler was indecisive with the ball as he finished with 64 yards and one interception on 5-for-10 passing.  None of the offensive series he was in for produced anything and he had another pass that was behind Devin Hester and was almost picked off by Leodis McKelvin.

Tarvaris Jackson (Minnesota Vikings)—Jackson, who’s in competition for the starting quarterback job in Minnesota, did himself no favors in the team’s win over the Colts as he was 7-for-15 for just 39 yards with no interceptions or touchdowns.  What made things worse was that Sage Rosenfels got most of the playing time in the first half and looked pretty good in doing so.  Jackson still has time to make up the difference to claim the starting job, but right it’s looking like Rosenfels will be the guy in Minnesota.



Jason Campbell and Colt Brennan (Washington Redskins)—Campbell did not see much playing and didn’t do much even when he was on the field against the Ravens, as he was 3-for-6 for 36 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.  Campbell’s potential is great, but one has to wonder if he’ll ever be able to put it all together.  Colt Brennan, who fans wanted to start after his preseason week one performance last season, was even worse, going 4-for-12 for 43 yards with one interception and no touchdowns against Baltimore’s third-team defense.

Kerry Collins (Tennessee Titans)—Though Collins looked decent in the Hall of Fame game, he was pretty bad in the win over Tampa Bay.  Collins was just 4-for-9 for 37 yards with two interceptions and no touchdowns.  He looked slower—at least slower than he normally is—in the pocket and his two interceptions came on a long pass and a short one.  On the long one, he threw to the end zone into triple coverage, and underthrew the ball pretty badly.  On the short one, he was trying to go over the middle but was picked off by a defensive end who read Collins and made a great play on the ball.  Vince Young looked solid in his backup work but Collins’ job is safe for now.

Rex Grossman (Houston Texans)—Perhaps nobody has fallen further than Rex Grossman, a former first-round draft pick.  Grossman didn't enter the game until late in the fourth quarter, he did not complete his only pass attempt, and he fumbled a snap.  In addition, and this probably won’t surprise you, Grossman also suffered an injury as he apparently strained his hamstring.

Byron Leftwich (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)—Leftwich was the second-string quarterback for the Buccaneers in this game and did not play well despite facing the second-team defense from Tennessee.  Leftwich was just 6-for-14 for 61 yards, with one touchdown and no interceptions.  Even though he did have a touchdown, it was a poorly-thrown pass that was behind receiver Brian Clark, who made a great play to grab the ball, evade a defender and make it into the end zone.

Kyle Orton (Denver Broncos)—Orton started off the game pretty well as he completed six of his first seven passes against the San Francisco 49ers.  He went on to finish 9-for-16 for 89 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions, one which came in the red zone.  Orton has reportedly struggled in training camp and, making matters worse, Chris Simms had a pretty decent night as he was 11-for-17 for 142 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions.