Monday, March 18, 2013
Locker has to make sure Fitzpatrick sits
By Paul Kuharsky
Is Ryan Fitzpatrick an upgrade at backup quarterback for the Tennessee Titans?
On Monday, the Titans cut Matt Hasselbeck and signed Fitzpatrick to a reported two-year deal. I hardly feel certain they got better in the process.
Ideally, Jake Locker will be healthy and play well for the Titans in 2013, and Fitzpatrick’s ability to play won’t come into question.
He’s younger than Hasselbeck and doubtlessly cheaper than Hasselbeck was going to be. Hasselbeck had a $7.5 million cap number and a $5.5 million scheduled base salary. The Titans saved that $5.5 million by letting him go. We have no idea yet what Fitzpatrick is getting from the Titans or what Hasselbeck, who's already linked up with the Colts, is getting from Indianapolis.
Fitzpatrick washed out in Buffalo less than two years after signing a six-year, $59 million contract extension in October 2011.
Here’s a report on Fitzpatrick from Scouts Inc:
“Fitzpatrick has been a streaky performer since becoming Buffalo's starter in 2010. He can be one of the more proficient passers in the league, but he also forces the ball into coverage at times. He has adequate size and arm strength, and he possesses excellent vision, which allows him to find second and third options downfield. He can improvise and make plays with his legs, but he's at his best operating from the pocket. Fitzpatrick is a crafty veteran who has likely hit his ceiling.”
Ultimately, whether it was Hasselbeck or Fitzpatrick in line behind Locker, it wouldn’t matter.
Barring injury, if the Titans need to turn to their backup, it likely means Mike Munchak’s third season as the team’s coach will be his last. His replacement will undoubtedly set out to find a different quarterback altogether.