Quarterbacks, can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em. Scipio did a little review of the Jon Gruden quarterback camp featured on ESPN while NateHeupel chimed in with a little extra on Bradford's NFL chances.
Heupel's perspective is particularly useful on the nature of the Kevin Wilson OU offense and how Bradford has not been groomed to lead an NFL offense like Clausen was under Charlie Weiss...typing those names within the same sentence causes me to wonder how all the potential German/nazi jokes were missed in the last few year of Notre Dame football. Hogan's Heros, Colonel Klink, I don't know... too late anyways.
I don't think Bradford is the right fit for the Rams as much as I like him as a prospect for his accuracy. Bradford is the guy who can excel if provided with time to grow and then excellent protection. Obviously that's what all you want for all quarterbacks but Bradford has the tools to really punish teams downfield. The Rams don't need the guy who take them to the highest level yet, they need guys who can take them to any other level. Building blocks. Like Ndamukong Suh.
Speaking of the House of Spears, ESPN's sports science feature used technology to find out who built Suh, how and for what purpose. My guess is the Nebraska "S&C" program, with steroids vigorous workout programs, to facilitate a ridiculous dime base defense and end Texas midwestern hegemony.
Colt, the intended target, is a curious tale as a pro. Watch his interaction with Gruden and look for Chucky's sick serial killer watching a drunk co-ed dancing on a bar grin after asking Colt his first question. The man clearly has some kind of passion for teaching quarterbacks. Watching McCoy and Tebow answer questions about terrible decisions they made in college ball is particularly hilarious, their faces look as though you asked Sergio Kindle about his drunken driving.
Both of them have to break a lot of bad habits but it's hard to root against either of them given their work habits and teach-ability. I wonder if Tebow can maintain the better delivery he's developing and be a successful NFL QB while Colt has to overcome the hero complex and be able to manage a game with more intelligence. McCoy could at least reach Kyle Orton levelwith the right mindset while Tebow I have trouble projecting because new mechanics could have such an impact. His size and strength could lend themselves into producing a guy like Roethlisberger who can get away with hanging on to the ball and finding open receivers but I don't know if he will ever throw a good enough deep ball to really take advantage of the extra time.
Tortilla Retort breaks down linebacker play in their 3-4 defense under Tuberville here and the upshot is they are moving old school, gap-fillin' Brian Duncan into a Kindle-type Buck role. They still have Colby Whitlock there with a host of other huge defensive linemen so they could 2-gap their way into Duncan and Bird flying free to the football.
One remaining question for the Texas defense still centers on Dustin Earnest and the middle linebacker spot. Last season filling in for Muck and in clean-up duty we saw a lot of Earnest's features: Earnest goes to camp was good, Earnest playing behind Kheeston Randall was a worthy sequel, but I'm worried about "Earnest in Space" and "Earnest Saves the deep middle" as being built on questionable premises.
Given that Texas rarely fields a Strongside linebacker I wonder if Emmanuel Acho could get a look at Mike in the fall. He's a guy that needs to be on the field and that can only be achieved with a 3-4 that takes one of the corners out or a position change inside.
In our longstanding and favored section "uppity Huskers getting overexcited about 2010" we have Huskergameday claiming that some guy named Taylor Martinez will have Muschamp up at nights. I actually think Muschamp stays up at night scheming his designs on Iowa St. in June so I'm not sure if this is really as threatening as Husker fans seems to think but the motivation behind the post ridiculous all the same. They should try to break 125 yards of offense before setting expectations as high as actually presenting matchup difficulties for the Texas defense.
Texas has probably struggled with running quarterbacks under Muschamp more than any other type of offense but every defense tends to struggle against a dual-threat quarterback because they change the numbers in the running game. I think Muschamp's "struggles" with mobile quarterbacks at Texas has had more to do with a secondary that is less efficient in zone than it has to do with anything about Muschamp's style. After all, he built his pre-Texas reputation on stoning the Florida Gators with Tebow in his Heisman season.
In zone the defensive backs can keep a better eye on the quarterback and close if he takes off running. The recent Texas recruiting at corner makes me inclined to think that Muschamp prefers pattern-reading zone in the future for it's versatility in the college game, as much as he surely loves having corners who can chase any receiver all over the field without more deep support than what Blake Gideon can offer.
A perusal of the ESPN Big 12 blog reveals that Oklahoma St. is pretty excited about their 2010 as well. DC Bill Young says middle linebacker Orie Lemon is the best Middle Linebacker in the country. Unless they are using a Tampa-2 that's a dubious location to have your best player in this league as stuffing the inside run is no longer the first priority for a defense.
Oklahoma has a mismatched cast of linebackers with several young guys trying to take over for Clayton and Ryan Reynolds. OU does a great job of linebacker development but their most prominent up-and-comer, Ronnel Lewis, is a guy they'll have to take off the field in obvious passing situations, or as Leach used to call them, offensive possessions.
For Texas though, these are all worrisome developments. If Tech, OSU, and the devil truly possess outstanding talent at linebacker that doesn't bode as well for the Jack'N'Jill offense. I still think Lemon and co. will have a different time meeting Tray Allen inside then they do against their own offenses from the shotgun in practice but it's easy to see Texas dropping a game or two in the first half of the season. I think Tech in particular is well built to handle the Longhorns in Lubbock while the Red River Shootout will probably be another defensive struggle.
Well, "Gilbertus freti", until Jack and Jill reach the well of disciplined power running, and of course the real question is whether those teams have DT play worth anything to keep those backers free.
For the purpose of fostering discussion, would you rather have Bradford, Clausen, McCoy, or Tebow as your quarterback in the NFL? Pretend you are the OC of a struggling franchise and you are rebuilding around whatever offensive scheme you want, who would you take and why?