It never ends for Washington Redskins fans. This week, the realization that John Beck is not an NFL starting quarterback has set in. There is a litany of empirical data to prove that point, but after last week's disaster against the Buffalo Bills, are numbers really necessary?
You want numbers? Fine. Last week's stat line included nine sacks, two interceptions, a fumble and some of the worst deep balls ever thrown in the NFL. How about a career 65.5 QB rating, or six career starts in five years in the league?
If Beck could play, he would have. Good quarterbacks are a rarity in pro football, and even decent quarterbacks are a fine commodity. If Beck could play, some poor team that started the likes of Rusty Smith, Brian Brohm, Keith Null or Kyle Boller in the last few years would have made a move for him. But those teams knew what Redskin fans are now finding out: Beck stinks.
But none of that matters. The guy cannot play quarterback in the NFL.
Beck does not have the arm or pocket awareness necessary for the position, and this Redskins team lacks any dynamic offensive player to take the pressure off him. Even the Canadians are making fun of John Beck. In the National Post (Toronto) following the Bills game, columnist Bruce Arthur accurately described Beck's poor play and its impact on the Redskins.
"It helped, of course, that the visiting Redskins were a car accident in burgundy, gold and white," Arthur said. "At quarterback, Washington started the same John Beck who once backed up Cleo Lemon on a Miami team that would finish 1-15."
The Redskin offense is like a young child learning to swim. You wouldn't tie a cinder-block to that child while he learns. Beck is that cinderblock. The Redskins are drowning this year, but Beck will only make it happen faster. There is one remaining move for coach Mike Shanahan and the Redskins:Free Rex Grossman.
Rex is capable of horrendous quarterback play. There is no arguing that point. Since his NFL career began, fans in Chicago and now Washington often sit cursing Rex and the turnover cocktail he can produce.
But when Rex is right, he can play. He can make every throw required of an NFL quarterback. Beck can't.
Rex gives the Redskins a chance to win. With Beck under center, the Redskins have no chance.
For Redskin fans, a once encouraging season is now lost in a torrent of horrid quarterback play. There are certainly big picture problems beyond the immediate inadequacy at quarterback. But for this Sunday, and for this season, the Redskins deserve Rex and the football volatility he presents.
It is time to relegate Beck back to the bench where his career numbers dictate he belongs. When a player's ceiling can best be measured at mediocrity, that player does not belong on the field. Beck has never won a game as a starter. Rex Grossman has been to the Super Bowl. Let's stop kidding ourselves here.
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