NFL Quarterbacks: 7 of the Strangest Throwing Motions in League History

Darin Pike@darinpikeContributor IJuly 21, 2011

NFL Quarterbacks: 7 of the Strangest Throwing Motions in League History

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    While much more disciplined than college quarterbacks, the NFL has certainly given rise to some unique throwing motions in recent years.  

    There are a few QBs in the current rookie class that will have an opportunity to hone their skills and their mechanics with NFL coaching very soon.  It will be interesting to see if Colin Kaepernick or Terrelle Pryor receive motion overhauls, similar to what Tiger Woods has done time and time again with his golf swing.

    Please share your thoughts on some of the more unique throwing motions from now or years past in the NFL.

Eli "Pressure Flip" Manning, New York Giants

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    While Eli Manning generally has a fairly solid throwing motion, when he gets under a little pressure he gets a bit soft in the wrist and tends to flip the ball.  

    Not that I watch the Giants on television that often, but it is something that I didn't notice until seeing Eli play live. Now I find myself looking for it when I watch him play.

Brady "Fly Swatter" Quinn, Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos

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    Quinn's throwing motion is difficult to describe.  He doesn't manage to get his arm fully cocked and then pushes the ball away from his body.  Perhaps it is best to just look at the video.

Dan "Eeyore" McGwire, Seattle Seahawks

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    Whenever I think of Eeyore I think of "Don't worry...I'll get there."  The same thing came to mind when I would watch McGwire's throwing motion.

    If it wasn't bad enough that he had further to throw due to his 6'7" frame, he was slow moving through his motion to boot.  Thank you, Ken Behring and Tom Flores, for taking him instead of that schlep Brett Favre that never amounted to anything in his 20 year career.

    Is there still any question they tried to ruin the franchise so they could move the team to California?

Tim "The Catapult" Tebow, Denver Broncos

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    As much work as Tebow spent re-working his throwing motion, 15 years of ingrained mechanics and muscle memory don't go away over-night...or over a single season.

    At times he will demonstrate a quick compact throw, but he seems quick to fall back to the old, clunky throwing motion.  His arm drops back like a fulcrum, circles around the back and then makes a bit overhead swing.  

    Don't take my word on it...watch the video and tell me if you don't start hearing catapult sound effects in your head, too.

Byron "Windmill" Leftwich

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    I would like to compare Leftwich to an old-fashioned pitching machine, but I don't think many readers are familiar with the old arm-style hurlers.

    Leftwich manages to get great extension behind his body and then come up and over in a nice arc.  The problem is, this type of delivery is a touch slow and not as accurate as a tighter motion.

Philip "Slingshot" Rivers, San Diego Chargers

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    Here we have proof that a QB doesn't have to have a prototypical throwing motion to be successful.  

    Rivers is one of the best passers in the league, rivaled only by those distributed at neighborhood night clubs by a certain QB.  But his throwing motion is hardly conventional.

    Just like a slingshot...he pulls his arm back, releases and the ball propels down-field.  

David "T-Rex" Carr, Houston Texans, Et Al.

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    It is hard to explain Carr's throwing motion.  When playing in Carolina, full back Brad Hoover simply called it "weird."

    It is almost like a shot-put, but ones' arm gets drawn back further when tossing the big lead ball.

    It is similar to firing an arrow, if not for the odd cross-body follow through.

    In the end, the best way I can describe Carr's throwing motion is that is how a T-Rex would throw a football with its short, flailing arms.