It has been a little over three weeks since Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams announced that his quarterback Vince Young would not be returning to the team for next season. Instead they will either try to trade or release him as they search for their next quarterback.
The announcement should have led to many teams making phone calls to the Titans organization to inquire about getting Young's services for the up-coming season. It's not everyday that a starting-caliber quarterback is on the market for next to nothing.
Despite all of the reports out there about Young's lack of work ethic, and him being a diva, there is no question that he can still play the game better than most quarterbacks in the league.
Young might not be putting huge numbers week in and week out, but he is a player who does enough for his team to win games. Sure he isn't out there throwing for 300 yards every game, but he is doing the little things right and is putting his team in positions to win each game they play in. His career record of 30-17 illustrates this.
Before a thumb injury ended his season prematurely, Young was having what could have been a career year.
Young threw for 1,255 yards, ten touchdowns and just three interceptions in nine games this year. He also completed 59.6% of his passes and had a quarterback rating of 98.6, easily the highest total throughout his five year career.
In my eyes there are twelve teams in the NFL who should pick up the phone and try to get Vince Young to improve their quarterback play for the 2011-12 season. Even with some question marks he still can be an above average NFL quarterback, and help a team get over the hump and get into the playoffs.
Here are the 12 teams in play (or rumored to be) for a new quarterback for the up-coming season and their chances of landing Vince Young for their squad.
The Buffalo Bills are a team who haven't made the playoffs in 11 straight seasons and have been searching for a franchise quarterback ever since Hall of Famer Jim Kelly retired in 1996.
Bills coach Chan Gailey, who is entering his second year with the team, is an offensive mastermind, known for taking average quarterbacks, and helping them produce and put up solid numbers in his offensive schemes.
Young would certainly bring a high talent to the quarterback position in a Gailey offense, something that usually doesn't happen. Young could also help led the Bills to some wins, something that hasn't been around Buffalo in a long time.
The only reason the Bills haven't made a call yet to the Titans about Vince Young is the emergence of Ryan Fitzpatrick this last season.
"Fitz" put up 3,000 yards passing to go along with 23 touchdowns, 15 interceptions and a quarterback rating of 81.8.
And while Young would improve the Bills on paper, he doesn't have Fitzpatrick's veteran savviness or ability to read defenses, and would come to a team who got production from rookies and breakout performances at the wide receiver position.
The Bills have made it know that Fitzpatrick deserves to start the 2011 season off at starting quarterback for the team and also made it known that they will try to find a future quarterback in the draft, so they can groom him to one day replace Fitzpatrick.
A team that is still in rebuilding mode is more than just one player away from competing in 2011. While Young is an upgrade over Fitzpatrick skill wise, I don't think it would be best for the team when they are going to try to build around what they already have in place.
They also want to continue to groom and build around the young players they already have in place.
Chances of Happening (out of 10): 1
The Miami Dolphins are another team in the AFC East that makes sense to take a run at Young to be their starting quarterback.
Unlike the Bills though, the Dolphins seem more likely to do it as their starting quarterback, Chad Henne, has come under enormous heat as he has been unable to perform.
Henne was once the quarterback of the future for a Dolphins team that was on the rise. He has cooled off considerably since then and now looks like a guy who shouldn't even have the starting job.
Sure Henne threw for over 3,300 yards last season but that came with 15 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. For his career, Henne has six more interceptions than touchdowns and has a record of 13-14 as a starter.
The Dolphins are a team that already have a lot of talent in place, and can play stride for stride with the New York Jets and New England Patriots, their two toughest foes in the division.
This team is really a quarterback away from making a run at the post season, and Vince Young could be the guy to come in and help take them over the edge.
Chances of Happening (Out of 10): 6
The soap opera show continues for the Cincinnati Bengals this off-season, and for once it isn’t because of a guy with the last name of “Ochocinco”.
Quarterback Carson Palmer has made it well known that he wants to be traded to a new team and if he doesn’t get his wish, he will contemplate retirement rather than continue with his current team.
If the Bengals were smart, they would call his bluff.
At this point in his career, Palmer is a dead-armed quarterback not capable of making the throws that he once was able to. He is a mere shadow of his former self and is years removed from his best season in 2005.
He is also one of, if not the most, overpaid players in the entire league and is due $38.5 million through 2014.
A grossly overpaid player on the decline is the perfect time to cut your losses and move onto a younger, promising quarterback which is exactly where Vince Young fits in.
The only downside to this scenario is the fact that Bengals owner Mike Brown has already made it clear Palmer is going nowhere this season, as he still continues to think that Palmer is a big part of the Bengals future. Yikes.
It’s the wrong move for a team that needs to get closer to the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens who have dominated the division. They need a change at quarterback and have the option to get one in Vince Young that will improve their play on the field.
As we all know though, owners rarely change their minds once it is already made up, no matter how foolish it is.
Chances of Happening (out of 10): 2, unless there’s a change of heart.
The Denver Broncos continue to come up in quarterback rumors despite the fact that they already have two starting caliber quarterbacks on the roster.
For some reason, the Broncos are easily moving on from Kyle Orton, one of the most underrated and underappreciated guys in the league. Orton, who is on the verge of being on his third team in four seasons, can be had by any team for the right price.
It comes as a shock to me because he has put up solid numbers (3,653 yards, 20 touchdowns this year in only 13 games) and has been on the winning end of his fair share of games throughout his career.
A back up that is on the roster that is viewed as “the savior” could certainly force you out though.
Tim Tebow stepped in very nicely at the end of last season, starting three games due to an injury to Orton, and put up some pretty good numbers (in those three starts he threw for 621 yards, four touchdowns and three interceptions).
I am very high on Tebow, as he has all the intangibles you want for a NFL signal-caller, and is a proven winner with a ton of athletic skill that he brings to the table.
More importantly though, he progressed very nicely throughout his rookie season, and is a better player than he was coming into the year. He will continue to get better reading defenses and better accuracy (two of his biggest weaknesses) as more and more time goes on.
Not everyone in the organization is sold on Tebow though as conflicting reports have emerged in recent weeks on how people inside the Broncos look at Tebow and what role he will have on the team next year.
Even though Tebow wasn’t drafted by this new regime, he has a chance to be great in this league and it should be his team moving forwards.
Chance of Happening (Out of 10): 0
The Oakland Raiders are a team on the rise, and some solid quarterback play can help push them towards the top of their division
Their current stable of quarterbacks, Jason Campbell, Kyle Boller and J.T. O’Sullivan, are a who’s who of other teams castoffs and don’t really scare anyone in the league.
Going out and getting a guy like Young would greatly improve this offense and give it even more big play capability.
They already have an above average running back in Darren McFadden and a bunch of different targets at the wide receiver position.
And who knows, with Young’s ability to scramble and keep plays alive, maybe this could be the year Darrius Heyward-Bey finally breaks out, as opposing defenses would only be able to cover him for so long with his great speed.
The Raiders are really close to finally making it back to the post season and turn their once proud franchise back into a winner again. Owner Al Davis is known to go after guys he really wants and if he was smart he would make a run to get Young in a Raiders jersey today to help get them back to the playoffs.
Chances of Happening (out of 10): 5
This one just makes too much sense for both parties involved for it not to happen.
One side wants to start for a NFL team. Check.
The other wants a difference maker at the quarterback position. Check.
Vince Young, welcome to the Minnesota Vikings!
The Vikings currently have one of the worst quarterback situations in the entire league. With the aging Brett Favre lost to retirement (we think), there is no one standing behind him ready to take over the starting spot.
Fans were screaming for Tavaris Jackson to start last year when Favre struggled mightily, and we all got to see what the Vikings already knew—Jackson just isn’t very good.
Joe Webb could be the next guy in Minnesota but it’s not like his play was top of the line or anything when he got the chance to fill in, and he still has a long way to go to be effective in the league.
This is a team that still has the veteran talent in place and has great offensive playmakers at its disposal at all of the skill positions.
Vince Young is a winning quarterback and the pieces are still in place in Minnesota to win now. Hiring his former coach Craig Johnson to coach the quarterbacks for the Viking makes the possibility of Young coming to Minnesota even greater,
This one should get done but you just never know.
Chance of Happening (out of 10): 8
Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has seen firsthand just exactly what Vince Young is capable of on the biggest of stages.
And with their current starting quarterback Matt Hasselbeck possibly on his way out, Young to Seattle makes more and more sense.
If Hasselbeck does indeed move onto a new team in free agency, bringing in Vince Young would help them not miss a beat on offense and might actually make them better off than they were before.
The Seahawks did play without Hasselbeck at various points throughout the season. During those times he was out, the Seahawks turned to back up Charlie Whitehurst, who played ok in his time in, but I don’t see him as a good starting quarterback.
J.P. Losman, the current third stringer, isn’t good enough to lead a team either.
Even if Hasselbeck wasn’t leaving, Young is a better option than any quarterback that the Seahawks have to offer.
The other two are viable options and Hasselbeck is getting up there in age and he isn’t as durable as he once was as injuries have slowed him down the past few years.
Only one team in the entire NFC West has a quality quarterback at the helm (St. Louis’ Sam Bradford).
Landing Young would give the Seahawks a chance to rule the division once again, and it will be better than their 7-9 record this year.
Chance of Happening (out of 10): 7
Coming into this season the Washington Redskins looked like they would be set for years at quarterback with Donovan McNabb coming over in a trade last off-season.
Now it looks like just after one short season together, they might be in the market for another starting quarterback.
After a season where McNabb clashed with head coach Mike Shanahan and played poorly to his standards, the Redskins look to be moving on.
If McNabb truly is gone, that means the Redskins have only Rex Grossman and John Beck left.
I certainly would not want that to be my season opening depth chart.
Vince Young would fit perfectly in Washington. They already have two good targets in deep threats Santana Moss and tight end Chris Cooley.
Bringing in someone of Young’s skill set would open up the offense even more, something that struggled tremendously this season.
Who knows though? Shanahan isn’t exactly the easiest person to read but owner Dan Snyder loves to spend money and would part with some draft picks to get Young there.
Chance of Happening (out of 10): 5
The Carolina Panthers are an absolute mess right now and even with spending a second round pick on a quarterback last off-season, this is a team in serious need of good quarterback play to get them out of this hole.
Looking around them, the Panthers are surrounded by teams with top notch quarterbacks in the division. With Drew Brees in New Orleans, Matt Ryan in Atlanta and Josh Freeman in Tampa Bay, that trend will continue for years to come.
Having a good quarterback on the team could help mask a lot of their other problems.
And you wouldn’t know by looking at the box score each week, but Steve Smith is still on the Panthers team and is begging for the team to bring in someone who can get him the ball.
Vince Young would give them time to work on their offense as he could get it done with their targets and their rushing attack. His ability to create plays on his own would also take some of the pressure off of the offensive lineman too.
This is a team desperately looking to rebuild and there is no better way to start that process than to get your team a quarterback that can lead it for years to come.
Vince Young is that guy and would come at a pretty cheap price, knowing full well he would be starting at quarterback no matter what.
Chances of Happening (out of 10): 5
Back to the NFC West we go!
This time it is to talk about the Arizona Cardinals quarterback situation, who better yet there lack thereof.
This is a team with only John Skelton and Derek Anderson as its only options at this point.
Why not take a run at Vince Young to try to improve the horrific offensive passing game? It could be your last chance to convince star wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald that the organization is serious about winning (Fitzgerald is a free agent after the up-coming season).
This is a team in a very winnable division and if they can land a capable starting quarterback this off-season, they are right back in the race in the poor NFC West, which it seems any team could win now going into next year.
With the Cardinals already having two good running backs and two good weapons at wide out, they are only a quarterback away from returning to the powerful offense that they had just two seasons ago.
Chances of Happening (out of 10): 7
And you thought we were done with talking about the NFC West; Nope not yet.
We still have one more team to talk about with the San Francisco 49ers.
Their fans are probably happy that they will never have to see Alex Smith play quarterback for their team ever again. The problem is that the 49ers don’t currently have anyone on their roster better than him.
Troy Smith and David Carr certainly aren’t although Vince Young is better than all of the quarterbacks I have named on this team so far.
Like most teams that we have touched on, the 49ers have good targets in place (in Vernon Davis, Michael Crabtree) and a great running game (with Frank Gore) and all they need is solid quarterback play and they are right in the race in their division.
Chances of Happening (out of 10): 7
This is a team that I really didn’t consider to even put on the list but I know that they will be in the rumors just as much as the other teams when it comes to Vince Young, and that is of course the Tennessee Titans.
With the firing of long time tenured coach Jeff Fisher, a lot of people out there quickly thought that Titans owner Bud Adams reconsidered and chose the wrong guy to get rid of.
Not so fast.
Adams said all along that the decision on his head coach would be a separate one and it was.
He chose he didn’t want either guy in the organization anymore.
No way would Adams go back on such a dire decision like that. You can’t cut your starting quarterback who you have stuck up for many times, and then just take him back like nothing happened.
Funny, I don’t see Vince Young real eager to head back to Tennessee either.
This is a team on the rebuild now, and will be a year or two away until they find their answers at quarterback.
Chances of it Happening (out of 10): 0