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Former Titans offensive coordinator Norm Chow, who coached Vince Young in the NFL and Matt Leinart at USC, shared his thoughts on both Thursday on "The Opening Drive" on SIRIUS NFL Radio. Chow, now offensive coordinator at UCLA, talked with host Randy Cross.
Cross: "You look at that 2006 draft class that included [Vince Young] and Matt Leinart -- besides the opportunity and either taking advantage of it or not taking advantage of it -- for these young quarterbacks, what are some of the stumbling blocks coming into the professional game from the college game?"
Norm Chow: "I think there are a couple [or] three of them in my mind, and one is the actual maturity level because the season lasts for such a long period of time that there really has to be some staying power to it all. And I'm convinced, and obviously no one really listens, but you need to stay in college for four, five years because it takes so much to be an NFL quarterback and the more mature and the more certain you are, and that's becoming obvious with that class that Matt and Jay Cutler seem to be advancing quicker than Vince. And I tell you what, I love Vince and we had a nice time together but he needed more seasoning. He needed to see more coverages. He needed to see more football before he goes into that high level of NFL play. And I'm convinced that young guys should stay, especially quarterbacks, because the more reps, obviously, the more ready you're going to be..."
Cross: "When you look at the quarterbacks, you had Matt Leinart at USC, you had Vince Young at Tennessee. If someone was to tell you that Matt Leinart could still be a Super Bowl-winning quarterback, could still be a quarterback with a long, successful career, do you believe that?"
Chow: "No question. I don't think there's any doubt in my mind once he gets that opportunity. I think Vince can go a long way. I think the best thing that happened to Vince is what's happening to him right now, that he gets to sit behind a veteran and hopefully he'll learn from it. Hopefully he'll use this, not as a time, 'Well, I'm just waiting my turn,' but rather a time to study and to learn behind a pro like Kerry [Collins] and for Matt to do the same. I think they will take it over. I really do. Carson [Palmer] did the same thing, right? He sat for a year behind, was it [Jon] Kitna? And he spent four years in college besides. And then sat a year behind Kitna and then his career took off. I really believe that. I think Matt and Vince have bright futures."