Luke-erella? Doubt It…

Posted: September 9, 2011 in Jacksonville Jaguars
Tags: , , , ,

I’m pulling for Luke McCown. I’d be thrilled if the 30-year-old quarterback became the NFL’s Cinderella story of the year, leading the Jaguars to the playoffs.

He’s capable of being more than a stop-gap starter for the Jaguars as the team waits for rookie Blaine Gabbert to develop. McCown showed flashes of what he could do with Tampa Bay in 2007. In back-to-back starts that year for the Bucs, McCown was 54-for-75 for 579 yards and two touchdowns. Those are impressive numbers. The fact that he has earned paychecks for seven years in the NFL is proof he has some skill. So does the fact that since being drafted in the fourth round by Cleveland in 2004 he has been traded twice – and that means Tampa Bay and Jacksonville sought out his services.

The mystery, of course, is why hasn’t he earned a regular starting job? What are his shortcomings? Cleveland wasn’t a powerhouse when the Browns shipped him to Tampa Bay. The Bucs were played musical chairs with quarterbacks during McCown’s four years. He was eventually beaten out for the starting job by Jaguar reject Byron Leftwich.

The bottom line is McCown has been given opportunities to be a starter and he didn’t cash in. Maybe this time will be different. Maybe he’ll be another Kurt Warner, who was cut numerous times and played Arena football before landing in St. Louis. Warner retired with two Super Bowl rings. Rich Gannon was a journeyman before becoming an NFL MVP with Oakland after turning 30.

So, yeah, I’m pulling for McCown, a soft-spoken father of three sons who grew up in Texas in a football family and is known for his faith and charitable deeds.

But my expectations are low. I still think cutting David Garrard was a bad decision, one made by General Manager Gene Smith who is chomping at the bit to get his guy, Gabbert, on the field as a soon as possible.

McCown first test comes Sunday when the Jaguars opening the season by hosting AFC South rival Tennessee. The Jaguars were a better team than the Titans with Garrard at quarterback. For what it’s worth, the Las Vegas oddsmakers had Jaguars as a 3-point favorite. After the QB change, the Jaguars are a 1-point favorite. Don’t be surprised if Tennessee is favored by Sunday’s 1 p.m. kickoff at Everbank Field.

McCown has been with Jacksonville for 53 weeks. He’s a student of the game and he knows the offense, but I expect the Jaguars will try to win by running the ball and counting on its overhauled defense to stop QB Matt Hasselbeck and slow down RB Chris Johnson.

I don’t think it will work. I don’t think the glass slipper with fit McCown. I see the Titans winning 21-17.

  1. The Jags are making it easier for them to move to California…PEACE.

  2. Why do I feel an opening game blowout of the Jaguars is coming? Despite the fact I feel Garrard would have made this team much better, since he can run when chased out of the pocket, Luke McCown strikes me as the least of this team’s problems.

    Will the Jaguars offensive line really play 4 quarters of quality football? Will the defense really stop being porous? Will receivers really catch passes for the whole game? If so, McCown may be able to put points on the board, while not being knocked out for the season. The Jaguars have too many questions.

    I predict a blowout of the Jaguars, with the potential for a disasterous season to look forward to. David Garrard may end up thankful he’s not the Jaguar’s QB. The decision was made when Blaine Gabbert was drafted to start him as soon as it appeared feasible. Luke McCown, barring one miracle game after another, is destined to head back to the bench or to the out for the season list.

    I hope I’m wrong. Would love to be wrong. Roderick may be onto something. If the Jaguars are a disaster this year, might it be time to move to L.A.? Will Blaine Gabbert be able to attract enough season ticket holders to keep the team in Jacksonville? Sunday begins to tell the tale. Like I said, I hope Im wrong. Jacksonville deserves better. Maurice Jones-Drew better stay healthy all year.

  3. I WAS WRONG. 16 to 14 JAGUARS WIN!

    Thankfully, it was a nice opening game. The Jaguars even found a defense. An 8-8 season might be an optimistic prediction, but today, I congratulate Luke McCown and the entire Jaguars organization on a nice win. There will be other days to discuss the challenges the Jaguars must meet. Right now, they’re tied for first in the AFC South Division.

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