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papillon
02-02-2011, 11:02 PM
While we all wait for the game this Sunday evening I got to thinking about legendary quarterbacks and their replacements and how best to go about doing just that.

After Terry Bradshaw retired it took the Steelers 20 years to win the SB again
Since Troy Aikman retired the Cowboys haven't done much in the post-season.
Since John Elway retired the Broncos haven't done much in the post-season
Since Jim Kelly retired the Bills have really struggled
Since Dan Marino retired the Dolphins have struggled

The exceptions:

Rodgers replacing Favre
Young replacing Montana

Why the exceptions worked:

Rodgers and Young both stood on the sideline for a few years before having to be the leader of the offense.

The situation:

Ben is 28 years old, lets say he has 7 more years of high level productivity left
Ben will be legendary when he retires
Leftwich isn't the future
Dixon isn't the answer (maybe, but I don't think so)

The question:

When should the Steelers really draft Ben's replacement? When Ben is 31? 32? 33?
How many years of watching and studying can a team afford?
The Steelers were lucky with Ben, he had a Marino-like rookie campaign, the Steelers can't count on catching lightning in a bottle twice.

Corollary:

The NFL is a passing league and without a good to great quarterback you are the Browns, Lions, 49ers, Panthers, etc
So, you have to be thinking about this way in advance if you want to remain competitive.
We lived through not planning for the future once; I'd hate to have to go through that again.

I think the right time would be when Ben is 33 or 34, hopefully, that would give the Steelers 3 to 4 years to get the quarterback ready. That's 5 years from now, that player is a junior or senior in high school. This is my cue for Dee Dub to give me the rundown on blue chip high school quarterbacks. :P

I was just thinkin...anyone else?

Pappy

Crash
02-02-2011, 11:12 PM
Why the exceptions worked:

They had high pedigrees, each were a #1 pick. As was Ben.

Look at the teams you listed that have struggled since? They have tried to "get by" at the QB position.

Just like we did from 1983-2003.

This is a QB driven league, always has been.

papillon
02-02-2011, 11:26 PM
Why the exceptions worked:

They had high pedigrees, each were a #1 pick. As was Ben.

Look at the teams you listed that have struggled since? They have tried to "get by" at the QB position.

Just like we did from 1983-2003.

This is a QB driven league, always has been.

I realize that, but Rodgers and Young both got to watch and learn without being expected to be the savior. Yes, they both were highly regarded, but the history of the NFL is littered with highly regarded quarterbacks that were thrown to the wolves, failed and were never heard from again, Boller, Vince Young, Jamarcus Russell, Ryan Leaf, Akili Smith, Alex Smith, Jeff George, etc.

Sitting and learning is best, but you have to have a guy with brains, skills and a team with patience.

The league wasn't quarterback driven in the 70s. Bradshaw, Pastorini and Fouts were a few of the quarterbacks that liked to go down field and take control of the game. A lot of HOF quarterbacks and good quarterbacks from that era were game managers, IMO, Staubach, Griese, Dawson, Stabler, Tarkenton, Haden, Sipe, Anderson (Kenny), you ran the ball and made a few plays with your quarterback. The Steelers, Oilers and Chargers were vertical teams and there weren't many others.

Pappy