NFL Week 4: Derek Anderson and Other Duds Who Could Lose Their Job Soon
After four weeks of play, we've seen some unexpected performances. There have been a handful of shocking breakthrough performances such as Austin Collie and Arian Foster.
On the flip side, there are a plethora of ineffective players who are barely hanging onto their starting job. Players like Derek Anderson. The former Browns quarterback took the starting job in Arizona after the Cardinals waived their 2006 first round pick, Matt Leinart.
Will Anderson be riding the pine next weekend? Are there other quarterbacks with a tentative grasp on their starting role? Read on to find out...
10. Lawrence Tynes
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The New York Giants kicker is only three for six on the season including two misses from under forty yards. On his career, Tynes has been successful on less than 80% of this field goal tries and has missed six career extra points.
With those type of anemic numbers, it's surprising to see that he still has a starting job. My money says he loses the job within the next two to three weeks.
9. David Garrard
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Garrard was on the hot seat before Sunday's game with the Colts, and may have temporarily held onto the starting gig with their improbably victory. By completing 17 of 22 passes for 163 yards and adding 44 yards on the ground, Garrard recaptured the conservative magic that makes him an effective quarterback.
So is this the result of a weak Indianapolis secondary? Or has Garrard changed his season's fortune? A win over Buffalo could give the coaching staff more confidence in their 32 year old quarterback.
8. Jimmy Clausen
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Clausen may only be a rookie, but it's clear he is not ready for the speed of the NFL game. Despite the fact that head coach John Fox was generous in his praise of Clausen, the Notre Dame product looked lost throughout Sunday's improbably win over New Orleans.
Clausen's final numbers, 11 of 21 for 146 yards and a touchdown, are entirely misleading. Clausen connected on a 55 yard touchdown to Jonathan Stewart where the running back found himself wide open downfield...and Clausen still almost under-threw him.
Clausen may be a good QB down the line, but Carolina can't win with a signal caller who is completing only 49% of his passes.
7. Sheldon Brown
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Did Terrell Owens jump in a time machine? It certainly appeared that way on Sunday when T.O. bent the Cleveland secondary over and had his way with them. Owens victimized the rival Browns for ten receptions and a whopping 222 yards.
Even though Cleveland held on to win, Sheldon Brown's poor coverage skills were exposed, and it would be surprising to see him retain the starting role for the duration of the season.
6. Alex Smith
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If not for JaMarcus Russell, Alex Smith would be the biggest bust since Heidi Montag got her puppies enlarged. The top overall pick from the 2005 draft (in fact, drafted ahead of Aaron Rodgers) is averaging 230 yards per game and has a better than two to one interception to touchdown ratio (seven picks, three touchdowns).
After having high off-season expectations, the Niners are off to a 0-4 start that has put head coach Mike Singletary on the hot seat. San Fran has offensive weapons with Frank Gore, Michael Crabtree and Vernon Davis which makes Smith's low level of production all the more baffling.
Smith's job security is helped by the weak back-up in fellow bust David Carr, but another week like his first four and Smith will find himself on the sideline holding a clipboard.
5. Darius Butler
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Although the Patriots play tonight against the Dolphins, this list wouldn't be complete without arguably the worst starting corner in football. Opposing offenses have been throwing away from rookie CB Devin McCourty to take advantage of Butler.
The UConn product was responsible for the 5 catches and 83 yards posted by Roscoe Parrish, Braylon Edwards 5 catches for 45 yards and a touchdown as well as Ochocinco's massive 12 catch, 159 yard performance.
Butler has been spelled at times by Kyle Arrington, but until something dramatic changes, Butler has to be taken off the field entirely.
4. Matt Hasselback
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In an embarrassing 20-3 loss at the hands of the Rams, Hasselback looked more like an uncertain rookie than a seasoned veteran.
The same man who once led his team to the Super Bowl managed a QB rating of only 58.9 against a Ram team that surrendered thirty points to the Redskins just a week prior.
Considering the Seahawks gave up a third round pick for Charlie Whitehurst, it would come as no surprise to see him under center at some point this season.
3. Levi Brown
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Brown, the starting left tackle for the Arizona Cardinals, didn't have a great game on Sunday. He saw his unit give up nine total sacks, and was responsible for at least four of his own.
Shaun Phillips played the game of his life against the Cardinals lackluster offensive line, recording four sacks and returning an interception for a touchdown.
Brown looked lethargic and was extremely slow on his feet during this humiliating defeat. If I'm Ken Whisenhunt, there is no chance I'm letting Brown start again next week.
2. Chris Williams/Frank Omiyale
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To be fair, there are so many people responsible for Sunday night's mega-fail that it's almost unfair to single out one person. In last night's loss to the Giants (who were missing leading sacker Matthias Kiwanuka), the Chicago Bears surrendered ten sacks!
Part of this blame lies with quarterback Jay Cutler who held the ball for two extra seconds on almost every play. Part of the blame falls on Mike Martz for dialing up deep routes on every play despite the negative results. But when a team surrenders ten sacks, the offensive line has to be held accountable.
Defensive ends Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck recorded three sacks a piece by beating the tackles to the outside, so don't be surprised if either of the starting offensive linemen find themselves on the bench next week against Carolina.
1. Derek Anderson
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It's never comforting to know you're in the midst of a quarterback controversy. It's even worse when your competition is Max Hall -- an undrafted 6'1 quarterback out of BYU.
Unfortunately for Anderson, a 7 for 14 performance with two interceptions and three sacks taken doesn't exactly get you off the hot seat. The truth is, the Cardinals are up a certain brown creek without a paddle, and it doesn't matter what castaway QB lines up behind center. Anderson will lose his job, and I'd go so far as to guarantee he takes it back after Hall struggles just as mightily.
The good news? With Jake Locker and Ryan Mallet available in this year's draft, the Cardinals QB deficiency may only last one season.