EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- A few of you have noted I got a little aggressive in Friday evening's post on the Minnesota Vikings' decision to keep Tarvaris Jackson as their No. 2 quarterback and trade Sage Rosenfels to the New York Giants. I don't take back any of it, but I do think it's fair to allow coach Brad Childress to close the book on the topic.
Childress addressed the trade in his opening comments of a Sunday news conference and then took a couple questions before shutting down the discussion. In short, he reiterated that Jackson had outperformed Rosenfels in practice and downplayed its significance on the overall bearing of the team; he compared the backup quarterback to "the catcher that plays behind Joe Mauer," the Minnesota Twins' reigning MVP.
So here are Childress' verbatim comments on the issue, for those who want to read his extended explanation. After that, we move on. Promise.
I think I've consistently stated to you guys the development that I've seen within Tarvaris and the camp that he had. I think he's probably positioned himself as I see it with his progress in the system, with his working knowledge, with his athleticism, to give us the best chance to win should Brett [Favre] get hurt.
But once again, I would talk about that in the same light and probably moreso than the catcher that plays behind Joe Mauer. I know Mauer has missed games. I don't think you've seen Favre miss that many. I know it's always the provocative thing to talk about the second quarterback on the roster, but maybe history has a chance to change. I doubt it. Tarvaris gives us the best chance to win though.
Sage seemed to have more productive preseason than Tarvaris. What did Tarvaris show?
That's a good question. I think you have to understand that the guy that started with the first group [Jackson] got to play eight snaps in the St. Louis game. The second guy [Rosenfels] got to play, I think he had 36 attempts. Am I right about that? Eight snaps, 36 snaps. The guys that they played with, the guys that he played with. It's a completely different set of circumstances.
I would hope that if Tarvaris was in there going with the two's that he would have been able to light it up the same way, to throw it to a guy on the post with nobody covering him. One-on-one is usually your best matchup, but the one where Joe Webb had with Javon [Walker] where the corner fell down, one on zero, that's better than anything you can ever imagine.
I don't profess to say that every situation was that situation. It's apples and oranges. You earn those snaps on the merit of how you practice and what you do on the merit of those practices. It's not just what it seems like. Those guys are graded every day. We keep track of every snap they take. We take copious notes on catches, drops and completions. He gives us the best chance. Did Sage progress? He absolutely did in a year, to the point where he's worth a fifth-round draft pick to leave. Again, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. ...
What's your confidence level if something were to happen to Brett?
I'm not going to deal in hypotheticals. I'm done with the backup quarterback. I'm done with it. If that's all you've got to write, good Lord. We're talking about the two highest scoring offenses playing in the league last year. Let's talk about the game instead of Joe Mauer's backup.