Matt McGloin and Terrelle Pryor go way back. Like WAY back. The two quarterbacks were both star high school recruits in Pennsylvania the same year. Though Terrelle Pryor's star was much brighter and it ultimately blocked out McGloin altogether.
Pryor had schools across the nation beating on his door to come play for them. Among the schools he visited were the likes of LSU, Penn State, Oregon, Michigan, and Ohio State.
The one school on this list that was important to McGloin was Penn State. That's where McGloin was waiting for a scholarship offer, but the school was holding that scholarship in case Pryor chose them. Ultimately he chose Ohio State, but he waited until the deadline to decide and in the meantime, McGloin was left without a scholarship.
Instead, the man we affectionately call McMoxie, appropriately enough, walked on at Penn State and earned a spot on the team. He then languished as a backup for three years before the Nittany Lions hired Bill O'Brien (now head coach of the Texans) and with all the flashy quarterbacks having transferred with the resignation of Joe Paterno, McGloin got the job.
McGloin went on to set school records in his senior season there. And yet with just the one year of production and a less than desirable set of physical attributes - height, arm strength, speed, etc - he went undrafted. He didn't just go undrafted, he had to try out.
After trying out for the Carolina Panthers and leaving without a contract, he tried out for the Raiders and made the team. That's when he was once again faced with Terrelle Pryor as competition. And once again, Terrelle Pryor was seen as the brighter star.
Pryor came into training camp as the number two quarterback and McGloin was the "camp arm". During camp, McGloin surpassed rookie fourth round pick, Tyler Wilson for the third spot, but still behind Pryor.
By the end of the preseason, the starting job was up for grabs. The competition was between Matt Flynn and Pryor, while McGloin's fight seemed to end with simply making the team.
With Flynn sitting out with elbow tendinitis, Pryor was given the nod to start the season. Pryor would suffer a concussion in week three and Flynn replaced him the following week. He started the team's week four match-up with the Redskins and looked lost. A week later he was cut. McGloin was now the number two guy... behind Terrelle Pryor, of course.
Four weeks later, after an historically bad stretch of quarterback play from Pryor, McGloin would get his chance. Pryor was injured once again, and McGloin stepped in. He went out and led the Raiders to a win over the Texans and each week after that played well enough that Pryor never got his job back.
Come the final game of a lost 2013 season, Dennis Allen gave Pryor the start, much to his -- er I mean, "his agent's" -- weird dismay. And after the season, Pryor asked to be traded. The Raiders were pleasantly surprised a team stepped up to offer anything for Pryor and they took what they could get and shipped him to Seattle for the final tradable pick in the draft.
Even with Pryor out of the picture, McGloin was faced with an uphill battle. The Raiders traded for Matt Schaub to be the starter and drafted Derek Carr as the future starter. Come OTA's, McGloin was again buried on the depth chart. Back to square one. The square he has started on many times before.
"Any time a quarterback who starts the year before and then the team brings in a new guy to take your job, it's frustrating," McGloin told FOXSports.com in a telephone interview. "I could be disappointed, but at the same time my mindset has always been, ‘Look, what can I do about this?' I can only control what I can control. Do I want to be that guy who pouts and complains? Or do I want to be that guy that says I'm accepting the challenge? I'm going to come in and compete with him."
All of this has led to tonight when Pryor returns to Oakland as his Seahawks face off against the Raiders in their preseason finale.
As in most final preseason games, neither team is expected to play their starting quarterback. The Seahawks number two quarterback is Tarvaris Jackson. He and Raiders second round pick Derek Carr will each start the game and play the first half, and perhaps some of the third quarter.
After they leave, Matt McGloin and Terelle Pryor will each go back and forth looking to drive their respective offenses down the field.
Thus far in the preseason, the numbers between McGloin and Pryor have been no contest - Just as they were last season for the Raiders.
McGloin is 28 of 50 (56%) for 366 yards and 3 touchdowns with no interceptions. He is the top rated quarterback this preseason by Pro Football Focus.
Pryor on the other hand has completed just 10 of 22 passes (49%) for 147 yards, 0 touchdowns with 2 interceptions.
Things have clearly moved in two very different directions for these two since their high school days. I expect that to continue tonight and in the foreseeable future.