By name and reputation, two perennial players like Brett Favre and Michael Vick are the ones that would always be picked first on a recess kickball team. You know the type: Disregard the age or felony, but a name will always outshine the least popular personality.
August was rocked by the major returns of quarterbacks Favre and Vick in the NFL. One was an aging master of craft indecisive about retiring for two straight years. The other was in a jail cell for the past two years for associating with dog-fighting crimes.
The media orchestrates the news to cover every movement, update, and reaction of these glamorized stars. It’s as though major hurricanes struck Minneapolis and Philadelphia.
So what does this mean for the young and restless? It’s a soap opera itself behind the scenes (where the media chooses to ignore) young quarterbacks. The Vikings have three young quarterbacks with potential—Tarvaris Jackson, Sage Rosenfels, and John David Booty. The Eagles have a young gun in Kevin Kolb.
Jackson has compiled through three seasons decent statistics (3,442 yards/20 TD/18 INT) but sub-par leadership skills on a Viking team that desperately needs it.
Rosenfels may be the sleeper in all the commotion. He played well for the Dolphins in 2005 when he led valiant comebacks in Week 13 against the Buffalo Bills and Week 15 against the New York Jets. Signing with the Houston Texans for 2006, Rosenfels finally started five games in 2007, finishing 4-1 as a starter.
In one of those starts, he led a comeback (down 32-7) against the Tennessee Titans, tying an NFL record with four touchdown passes in the fourth quarter. Overall, Rosenfels is 6-4 as a starter.
Rosenfels is in a class much like Kevin Kolb of the Eagles. Raw talent aside, both quarterbacks have yet to prove their full worth to either of their respected teams.
Kolb was utilized when McNabb hit a low point in 2008 against a vaunted Baltimore Ravens defense. Popular opinion says that didn’t work out so well. Rosenfels has crammed few starts in his young career, but he has not started more than 10 games in a row.
It is unfortunate that these potential future stars must warm the bench for Favre and Vick.
No question that the Vikings and Eagles wish to appease the demand from Super Bowl deprived fans of a shot in 2009, but I merely see the Favre experiment setting aside a promising future for an aging present.
For the Eagles, I foresee more trouble than Vick is worth. He can provide gadgetry, but a wall of McNabb and Vick will truly hinder Kolb’s hope.
Let this be a lesson that you can’t be picked first in kickball if your name has no value.