Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Sam Wyche Makes Bold Prediction For Tebow

Former NFL quarterback Sam Wyche, more known for his NFL coaching days and probably best known for his antics as a coach, has gone way out on a limb for Tim Tebow.
Wyche once coached both Joe Montana and Boomer Esiason and says Tim Tebow will be in that class of elite NFL QB.
That isn't a hard bet to take. Being an elite QB is difficult enough. Many were thought to have that kind of potential and failed, some miserably and some just never lived up to the hype. Timmy Tebow, on the other hand, has very little in the way of expectation, so if he becomes a good quarterback at the next level, Sam Wyche gets a little justification in his bold prediction. I guess it comes down to what Sam's definition of "elite" really is.
It is the prediction here that Tebow will not become an elite QB, nor will any other QB coming out in this year's draft. Not that they don't have that potential, it's just any easy bet to say that they won't. See, elite means elite. That is very few by the way. Trying to say Tebow, with all of his issues going in to the NFL (slow delivery, bad balance, lack of experience under center, style of offense at Florida), the likelihood of achieving an elite level is extremely small. Tebow has a handful of QB coaches trying to remake his delivery in a very short time, but isn't that what Scott Loeffler tried to do over months last off-season?
He will not throw at this week's combine, but is scheduled to do so at the Gators' pro day in April.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

2010 Draft Class: Weak

When the best QB prospect in the NFL draft only played a handful of plays during his junior year and is coming off an injury to his throwing shoulder, you know there is trouble brewing for the entire class.
That is the state of the potential quarterbacks for the April draft that are currently preparing to show their stuff at the annual combine coming up soon.
Mel Kiper, Jr. and Todd McShay, ESPN's resident draft gurus slate Sam Bradford as the top pick at the most important position in sports, followed by either Jimmy Clausen or Colt McCoy, with Tim Tebow finishing #5 on both boards.
Compared with recent years, this seems to be one of the weakest QB classes in some time. None of the top names will sell any more season tickets for their teams, but they may land on decent football teams, since they probably won't go near the top, even though there are plenty of teams in need of a long-term signal caller.
I too would put Sam Bradford at the top of the board, if his shoulder is deemed sound. I've always liked Colt McCoy as a player, but the injury in the BCS Title Game was a little scary and mysterious. He says he is just about ready to throw at the combine, but will leave that up to his advisors.
I have written in this column before that I don't have a good feeling about Jimmy Clausen's mechanics and I just don't see him endearing himself to an NFL team or town.
Obviously Tim Tebow is the crowd favorite, but I agree with the masses, that his "unique" mechanics will not allow him to be successful as an every down QB at the top level. He is working with a couple coaches to "fix" his throwing motion, but I doubt we will see a difference at the combine or in mini-camps with whatever team takes the chance on him.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Brees QB's Saints To Super Bowl Win

84 passes, 37 runs. Enough said. Super Bowl XLIV was one for the QB's. Peyton Manning owned the first quarter and staked the Colts to a 10-0 lead.
In last year's Super Bowl, the game changed just before halftime with an interception returned 100 yards for a touchdown. The Cardinals almost overcame that potential 14 point swing and if it wasn't for Ben Roethlisberger and Santonio Holmes fantastic play, they would have.
Tonight, the Saints had a 4th down and goal to go before half. Sean Payton went for it and lost, but went for it again to start the second half with an onsides kick and it paid off with needed momentum and kept Manning off the field for an extended period.
Drew Brees was as efficient in the biggest game of all as he was all season, going 32 of 39 for 288 and two TD's. His completions tied Tom Brady's SB record. He won the MVP and cried with his young son in the afterglow of reaching the pinnacle of the football world, both for his family and the family of New Orleans!

Scholarship Conversation Not Appropriate

It doesn't matter how great any 13 year old athlete is in any sport, having any contact or conversation with a coach from a college or university about a scholarship offer is wrong and should be outlowed by the NCAA.
Lane Kiffin was known for some outlandish things before and during his tenure at the University of Tennessee, but news of a scholarship offer to a 13 year old quarterback takes the cake. Even if it was just a good-natured, fun talk and not a formal offer, this should not be acceptable.
National signing day was last week and many players that had made verbal commitments to certain schools, were disappointed to find out that there was not going to be a formal offer after-all. Anything could happen to Kiffin's career at USC and since 13 year olds haven't even entered high school, a scholarship is something to strive for, not commit to. This just opens the door to parents and kids worrying about things beyond their need.
As a private trainer, I am in the business of getting players in position to earn scholarships, but this is just too early and needs to be addressed by the NCAA, so that coaches, players and parents don't get more carried away than they already are.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Caution: Weighted Footballs and other "aids"

I have seen QB's being trained to drop back with bungie cords and throw with weighted footballs. To this I say "HOLD ON". Throwing with a weighted football will do more to damage your throwing motion and maybe injure your elbow and shoulder than to improve your strength and/or power. It will most likely make you throw off-balanced to compensate, but most surely puts more strain on those two joints.
In similar regard, I do not agree with using bungie cords to add resistance to your drop back. More than likely, it will cause you to lean too much away from the line of scrimmage and change your balance. The more resistance, the more you must gain leverage to push against it.
I would encourage any and all bungie work while training to run faster, but do not use it to train your drop back! I am all for foot quickness, running speed and plyometric power and strength, but not at the expense of reducing your balance and not at the risk of injury to your arm.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Super Bowl Problem: No Bad Guy

Picking a winner of the Super Bowl is usually pretty fun and while any fan can make a case for their team winning the game, there is usually a favorite. I haven't been able to come up with a good reason to pick either team, because both have the "it" factor needed to win the game Sunday night.
Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints are America's symbolic team because of what the area has been through in recent years and they have never won the Super Bowl before. Peyton Manning needs this win to really put him up there with the All-Time Winners. He is already one of the all-time greats, but winning in the Super Bowl is another matter and he needs another win.
Both quarterbacks are the consummate professionals and leaders of their teams. They are the driving force of the success of their teams. Both teams are offensive-minded and can make a comeback if down by a score or more.
It really comes down to a coin toss between the best team from each conference. Although I believe the Saints could have the best offense in all of football,
with the coin spinning in the air, I believe Peyton Manning will will his team to victory in Super Bowl XLIV.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

National Signing Day For High Schoolers

Today is the first day of the rest of your life! Or at least the next four years and for some it won't even be that long. Earning a college scholarship is the dream of many players and their parents. Today was cutdown day, decision day. Some had made the decision long before this day and others were still trying to decide which school would be the most like home.
Phillip Sims was the top high school QB prospect in the country, heading to Alabama.
I was at Tampa Catholic High School this afternoon to witness Christian Green, a four year starter at quarterback, but will be a receiver at Florida State this fall and his offensive tackle Chaz Green, who will take his great feet and strength to the University of Florida. Chaz is rated number 52 and Christian 53 on ESPN's list.
It is a day to remember for the rest of your life and can shape your future, depending on how it is approached mentally. Some will get homesick and run back to their hometowns. Others will never go back to their hometowns except for short visits. It was fun to be part of the action, after watching Christian Green start for four years and lead his team to the state championship game more than once, and reporting live here in the local market as ESPNU carried it across the nation.
The packed room of students and media was quite a different scene than when I signed my scholarship papers 25 years ago at my kitchen table with my parents.
Congratulations to all who are taking another step in living their dreams!