As the media will constantly tell you – The Broncos have a QB battle. It doesn’t take a genius to see it for yourself without their judgements. When the head coach approaches the press after practise dreading the same question for the 11th day in a row, answers the same way for the 11th time, it has one thinking about questions HC Vance Joseph should be asked.
When 100% healthy – CJ Anderson or Devontae Booker? Jamaal Charles or Stevan Ridley? Brendan Langley or Lorenzo Doss? Obviously, Vance isn’t going to answer, but at least ask them. I’m in the UK, we don’t get the same media coverage or the chance to drive over to practise and see with our own eyes, making us rely on the few hard to find good media outlets to keep us informed.
When there is so much infighting how can you grasp who’s doing well? Reporter A ” QB1 looked awesome today, showed real hustle went 7/9 and a TD, but 2 INTs – 2 abysmal throws to boot.” Reporter B, “QB1 looked out of his depth getting lucky with a TD and struggled to move the ball today resulting in 2 INTs.” Reporter A loves QB1 and reporter B loves QB2. Can you imagine what press confrences would look like if 90 players were in a battle for 53 paychecks and were being properly discussed?
Which is why I’m excited to stay up til stupid o’clock Friday morning, neglecting sleep for the team I love. Here’s a chance to see for myself what’s real. Get answers for the stream of questions I have before kickoff.
What do coaches see in this guy? Or, wow who is this guy, how has he slipped under the radar? After each preseason game, I write a 53 man roster based on the game and ask the head coach questions that we never hear out of any reporter. There is a core squad of 30 players that get bold print every roster, but the fun is in the battles.
A quick example:
RB3 Vs Bears – 18 carries 105 yards 2 TDs 1 fumble lost
RB3 Vs 49ers – 8 carries 42 yards 0 TDs 0 fumbles lost
RB4 Vs Bears – 10 carries 67 yards 1 TD 2 fumbles lost
RB4 Vs 49ers – 14 carries 110 yards 1 TD 0 fumbles lost
RB1 and RB2 are injured, but locks for the final roster. I would ask Joesph, does keeping RB3 and RB4 be a waste of roster space? How many questions a day could be directed about different battles to the OC or HC? The truth is, you’d keep all 4 and use 1 as trade bait for an upgrade.
Could my fullback play as 4th RB and 3rd TE or do you have to choose 1 out of 3? In this day and age do we need a fullback? Is RB4 worth more than FB1? A quick example has turned into a real thinking session. Imagine having these scenarios playing through your mind, along with 40 other camp battles, but instead, are constantly being asked about the same QB battle over and over, again.
Would you end up getting frustrated and evaluate talent wrong due to a line of questioning from media fanboy 1 and 2? What if the team starts out 0-3 – would fanboy 2 (the hater) be allowed to pressure you so much you fear for your job? Would you swap player A and B, or ride with your decision?
Does the media have sway over who makes the roster or who starts at high profile positions? Do fan opinions matter, which often seem to be based on media output? How much do coaches and the organization as a whole, filter out? Maybe after the game, the reporters will find a way to ask questions about the other 21 positions. One can hope, until then, bring on games where we decide who’s full of bull and who’s not.