A tip of the hat to you, Blaine Gabbert. A pat on the back. An attaboy.
You played well Saturday night against the Jets. Very well. You looked like a real NFL quarterback, a quarterback who could lead a team to victory.
Now you have to do it again . . . and again . . . and again.
If you couldn’t make all of the throws you wouldn’t have been drafted in the first round; you wouldn’t have survived two years in the NFL. All NFL quarterbacks can make the throws.
But in the NFL it isn’t about what you CAN do, it’s about what you DO -- time after time. Yeah, it is a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately world you live in.
Bad performances have to be the exception, not the rule. You proved you could do it. Now keep proving it.
The difference between the superstar quarterbacks, the middle-of-the-pack quarterbacks and the bad quarterbacks is that old buzz word: consistency. Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady make the good throws 80 to 90 percent of the time. I’m talking about getting into the right play, finding the open receiver and throwing the ball accurately. The average quarterbacks do it 50 to 60 percent of the time. The stinkers, which is what you’ve been, do it 20 percent of the time.
You’ve had a small handful of really good games in your brief career, but in most games you’ve repeatedly looked puzzled, looked nervous, looked blind and missed the target you were trying to hit. Not having a strong supporting cast hasn’t helped you, but your bad play speaks for itself.
Against the Jets, however, you made the deep throw right off the bat, hitting Ace Sanders down the middle. You made a couple of difficult sideline throws with defenders in your face. Ironically, your worse throw came on your 5-yard touchdown pass to tight end Allen Reisner. Reisner had to make a good catch on what was a throw any high school quarterback could make. Still, 13 of 16 for 165 yards and a TD is a good game for any quarterback.
I’ve been your biggest critic. Honestly, I still don’t have high expectations for you. But Saturday night against the Jets was you taking a step to prove me wrong. Good luck.
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