Monday, August 22, 2011
Poll: Which QB should start for Seahawks?
By Mike Sando
Deep breaths, Seattle Seahawks fans.
No need to hyperventilate over the building quarterback competition between Tarvaris Jackson and Charlie Whitehurst.
A few things to take into account before exercising your SportsNation voting privileges:
- The Seahawks have no real starter. Jackson and Whitehurst are making backup money. The Seahawks haven't committed to either one as a long-term starter. Jackson is the starter until he is no longer the starter. Seattle will revisit the quarterback situation down the line. Carson Palmer could become an option. The team could draft a quarterback or trade for one. This is a transitional year for the team at quarterback. Not particularly dramatic.
- Lawyer Milloy does not get a vote. The former Seahawks safety stirred conversation by supporting Whitehurst, his former teammate, as worthy of the starting job. Milloy credits Whitehurst for helping the Seahawks reach the playoffs last season. He likes what he's seen from Whitehurst during the preseason. Fair enough, but Milloy should know better than most just how misleading preseason performance can be. Despite a 93.1 rating, Whitehurst is averaging 5.4 yards per attempt, which ranks 19th among 22 qualifying quarterbacks.
- Whitehurst has responded. Coach Pete Carroll was a little premature in naming Jackson his starter before camp got under way. The move is looking like a smart one in retrospect. Whitehurst, a non-factor during his first season with the team, has responded well enough to become relevant. He has made strides with his accuracy, mechanics and overall feel for the game. He looks better now than he has in the past. That is a good thing for the Seahawks. Carroll will have to choose between continuing to dangle the carrot or letting Whitehurst have a bite of it.
- Jackson hasn't had any help. It's tough to fault Jackson for struggling with the first-team offense. Pass protection has been weak. Whitehurst has benefited from working against backup defenses. Any quarterback would likely look better going against lesser competition. That goes for Jackson, too.
- Whitehurst has earned first-team reps. I'm with Milloy in thinking Whitehurst has done enough through two preseason games to get a longer look. The third preseason game awaits. That is generally when teams play their first units the longest. Why not give Jackson and Whitehurst an equal number of chances with the starters? Seems like something to consider.