Your quarterback drops back to pass. The pocket begins to collapse. The left guard gets beat but your running back is there to help. The Quarterback allows himself the briefest moment to check his blind spot behind him, leaving his front wide open. He doesn’t see the corner blitz.
The quarterback gets taken down.
Something like this.
He doesn’t get up. He’s grabbing his throwing shoulder. It doesn’t look good.
A few minutes later, through the magic of technology, and the fact that no one can keep their mouthsshut word gets out.
Out For Season.
And there’s an Ambulance Driver wanted for Manslaughter
You turn to your backup quarterback. The guy who’s there for just such an emergency.
The guy you are paying to BACK UP the starter.
And what happens as soon as the game is over?
You start looking for someone to replace the backup.
Such is the case for the St. Louis Rams and Kellen Clemens.
But it’s sort of a league wide issue.
I’ve talked before about sunk cost theory (short read: whatever you’ve paid in the past has no bearing on what you expect in the future.)
But cases like this transcend that theory, because the moment the person who is given the opportunity to perform the job that he is paid to do, you take the job away from him!
When Sam Bradford went out, St. Louis, in their infinite wisdom, contacted Bret Favre.
800 year old, hasn’t played in years, Bret Favre.
What the heck is going on!?
When you are an NFL GM you have a limited budget to work with, and a guy who, in a perfect world, never plays for you, isn’t the highest priority. You still have to have some faith.
If you have no faith in the guy you employ, then he shouldn’t be employed by you.
I understand that Kellen Clemens is not a very good quarterback. I understand that Kellen Clemens is not a very good 2nd Quarterback. I’m a Jets fan, I saw it. I get it.
But what I don’t get is, if the moment you NEED Kellen Clemens you do everything in your power to not use him…
THEN WHY THE HELL ARE YOU PAYING KELLEN CLEMENS!
And yes, I understand that St. Louis has no 3rd QB on their roster.
But you don’t call Bret Favre to come out of retirement to backup the guy who backed him up on the Jets in 2008.
As a manager, if you never entertained the thought of “Gee, how the heck am I going to react if Kellen Clemens becomes my starter” then you have failed as a manager. Because if you asked yourself that, then you wouldn’t be scouring the scrap heap for someone else.
Trading for a QB is separate issue, in this case. As it’s right before the deadline, you might be able to pry another backup from a different team that has had some more success or has worked with your OC. But that is potentially a future investment, where you believe there is a chance of success and y0u might be able to re-sign or keep him.
However, when you are faced with a situation, that again, you are completely prepared for, and you think the best course of action is find a guy who isn’t playing to play for you, you are making it clear that you are not going to compete.
And you have failed as a manager.
Just ask Josh Freeman how easy it is to learn a new offense in 2 weeks.
You are doing your team a disservice. The Backup has been working with the team and has some sort of rapport. And again, this is the sole purpose of his existence on your team. Now you’re telling the team, hey, all the work you did? Screw you.
If you don’t want Clemens, and plan on trading for Jason Campbell, then SIGN JASON CAMPBELL.
While Campbell may have a higher price tag (again this is the Theory of Jason Campbell), you won’t have to go out and sign the guy after paying someone else to do the job you want him to do!
People hammered the Washington Monuments when they drafted Kirk Cousins after RGIII. But they were right. Not only because RGIII got hurt, but because the guy they trust to run the offense should Griffen get hurt, is the guy the have to run the offense should Griffen get hurt.
It’s why you pair young qb’s with veterans. It’s why you pair veterans with a young pair of legs. So that you continue on.
Bottom line, when you desperately try to replace your now starting backup, you have paid someone for a job you don’t want them to do.
Because if Kellen Clemens can’t lead an offense, that’s fine.
But someone who thinks that, hired him.
That’s not on Kellen Clemens. That’s on management.