Well it seems more and more that Gradkowski might be starting next week. Russell got benched again and Gradkowski came in and led us on what would have been a game-winning 2:00 minute drill if only DHB didn't create an interception on a pass he should have caught in the red zone.
If Gradkowski is starting, you know Cable wouldn't be doing it unless..........Davis might be wanting him to? If Al didn't want Grad starting, you bet that he'd make sure it didn't happen. Could Al finally be seeing that Russell isn't the future of this team? It's clear from the post-game interview with Gradkowski that he already is a better leader and is definitely a better QB.
So what of QB options after this season? Next year is uncapped after all so Russell can be cut without cap ramifications leaving Davis plenty of dollars to throw at a newer shinier QB. I've done a post on this before yes, but let's take a look at some other QB choices.
The Texas Torpedo, the guy I've always wanted. But now my want for him is steadily declining as this college season has gone on. Though Al may be wanting him more and more.
Fleet-footed, tough runner, rocket-launcher arm, everything Al loves. Accurate, great leadership, tremendously hard worker, everything Russell doesn't have. So why am I not wanting him quite as much?
Well from extensively watching Texas, he has a tough time getting going. Slow starts to games and usually games versus the likes of Baylor, Central Florida, and the like. Not exactly great competition to help you prepare for the NFL game. But if anyone can properly prepare, it's Colt. Unlike Russell, he actually works towards success.
He also makes some bad reads, but he'd be willing to actually work and cooperate with the great QB coaching staff Oakland has. McCoy reminds me a lot of a Joe Flacco except more mobile and a faster developer.
I'm very interested to see how Gradkowski fares as a starter. From what we've seen in limited action, he appears to have really gotten some accuracy issues worked out during the offseason and is clearly capable of leading us downfield. If he can do this as a starter, then I have a plan to propose.
Keep Gradkowski through the offseason
Bring in Jason Campbell as a free agent
Have the two compete for the starting spot
Campbell has good mobility, good arm strength, and once again has a good work ethic. Accuracy and good reads are definitely spotty, but much better than Russell.
And competition only makes you better, this is especially true with QB's. Whoever gets the starting spot would have definitely earned it instead of the fake competition in camp this year between Russell and Garcia/Gradkowski.
Plus this plan allows us to use all our draft picks towards improving the team to help the QB more.
Several people have mentioned Ryan Mallett, though I'm against this option.
Russell-esque arm strength, good speed, but he's also very inaccurate and makes some bad decisions. I don't really know much about him, but from what I've watched of him it doesn't look good. For a team looking for a down-the-road replacement QB option, then here's your perfect long-term project. But the Raiders need immediate success and a game manager. Mallett doesn't fit that mold.
Though I could see Davis drafting him.
Another move I'm against, but one I could live with.
Minus a bad injury to start this season and Bradford has done everything very well. Amazing completion percentages, nice deep ball, decent mobility especially in the pocket, and once again a hard worker. All this with average receiver talent, a great TE, and good running back checkdown options.
Sounds like he's been playing for the Raiders all along.
He's very young and is already playing at the level of Colt McCoy; translation: immediate success with a high developmental ceiling. Lack of experience could be an issue, but he's got the skill set for success and the mentality to keep getting better. Davis should be drooling over this guy.
God save us if we draft Tim Tebow. Aka, Vince Young 2.0 (and not the Vince Young we're seeing now)
The only reason this could be good is that he can run and thus avoid pressure. But he runs way too much. It's his first instinct and intention on every play. Now who else was like that?
Personally I don't what a guy who's only really good at running on our team. He makes some bad reads and really bad throws and is very lucky that he has talent at Florida to make up for it.
Other draft possibilities that I'm just too much against to go into detail about:
- Ricky Stanzi- interception prone
- Jake Locker- very inconsistent on a weekly basis, not overly impressive
- Jimmy Clausen- I'm an ND fan but he's only good because of the insane amount of weapons he has
- Jevan Sneed- see Jake Locker, though I like his mobility and leadership
A draft stocked with QB's and a good free agent prospect in Jason Campbell, and even possibly the game manager we need in Gradkowski already on the team. Which would be your choice?