(Best read in an angry Stephen A. Smith voice – as opposed to the non-angry Stephen A. Smith voice)
I didn’t realize I was so off base with my comments about San Jose State QB Adam Tafralis. For those not familiar with the situation, I last week characterized Tafralis as the “The Next Matt Moore” – an undrafted quarterback with a chance to make a 53-man roster.
The response I’ve received has been interesting to say the least. I’ve been ridiculed for even evoking Tafralis’ name in that sense. Who else should I have suggested – Chad Henne, John David Booty? For those that didn’t catch it the first time, the term “The Next Matt Moore” refers only to undrafted quarterbacks – you know, guys that aren’t supposed to be any good, because, you know, the good ones get drafted. It’s called putting yourself out on a limb. It’s called making a suggestion, or should I just sit back and sing the praises of Brian Brohm and Andre Woodson – both of whom you could have.
I’ve also been badgered, because Tafralis has been projected in scouting circles as a fullback or tight end at the next level. In fact, Tafralis has received an invitation to the Combine as a tight end. Whether or not he accepts that invitation remains to be seen, but I did put in a call in to San Jose State’s Sports Information Director, Lawrence Fan, last night, with an answer to be expected this week.
I will not apologize or flinch for suggesting Tafralis as a legitimate quarterback prospect. Let us peruse over some of the studs and duds that have very recently taken meaningful NFL snaps:
Jonathan Quinn and Henry Burris – Are you kidding me? Arguably the two worst players in league history.
David Carr – Yes I did just go there. He was replaced by an ancient Vinny Testaverde – that’s all I have to say.
Joey Harrington – Let’s face it. Enough is enough.
Chris Weinke – Didn’t Carolina win a game by not allowing him to throw a pass?
Cody Pickett – What the….?!
Brock Berlin – I think the Rams seriously considered starting Drew Bennett at quarterback instead.
Jake Delhomme – I forget, who drafted him? Oh yeah, no one.
Tony Romo – Barely got a Combine invite.
Rich Gannon – Yeah. Great idea. Let’s convert him to a defensive back.
Shaun Hill – At this time last year, Mike Nolan didn’t even know he was on the team.
Let me get to my point. Unless you have a crystal ball, and I know you don’t, laughing off Adam Tafralis, Kyle Wright, or any other under the radar prospect is itself ridiculous. As player personnel history has clearly shown, no one has all the answers. There are too many variables to simply stamp a prospect as “can’t play.” Systems, coaching, physical, mental, and emotional development and maturity all factor into player success and failure. And to assume you can predict how these variables play out – well, you know what they say about assuming.
Let the battles rage on, but take the blinders off.
And to Stephen A., I can’t stand Raw-ja (yes, I spelled it like that on purpose) Clemens either.