Saturday, August 31, 2013
Time may not have been Young's only issue
By Rob Demovsky
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- It’s easy to say Vince Young didn’t have enough time to learn the Green Bay Packers’ offense.
And it would be true.
After all, any quarterback signed to a new team with an unfamiliar system would struggle to pick things up in less than a month. So when Young signed with the Packers on Aug. 5, he was a long shot from the start, making his release Saturday far from a complete shock.
But after watching Young practice for four weeks and play in all four preseason games, there’s reason to wonder whether an entire offseason with coach Mike McCarthy, offensive coordinator Tom Clements and quarterbacks coach Ben McAdoo would have turned Young into a capable backup for Aaron Rodgers.
Young’s throwing motion and footwork didn’t match with what McCarthy teaches in his offseason quarterback training sessions. Although he praised Young for trying to incorporate some of the team's fundamentals, the coaches might have had a hard time breaking a 30-year-old quarterback of his old habits.
Two issues Young has had in his career -- accuracy and ball security -- were problematic in his stint with the Packers might may not have changed no matter how much time he had been in their system. A career 57.9 percent passer, Young completed just 26 of 49 passes (53.1 percent) this preseason. Although he didn’t throw an interception, he fumbled twice (losing one). In 60 career regular-season games (including 50 starts) with the Tennessee Titans and Philadelphia Eagles, Young fumbled 40 times.
To be sure, most of his playing time this preseason came with second- and third-string players, many of whom also will be released this weekend, but he also played against many players of the same caliber and couldn't take advantage.
The Packers now have to figure out where they will turn for a backup to Rodgers. The only other quarterback they have on their roster is B.J. Coleman, who spent all of last season on the practice squad but never made a strong bid for the No. 2 job this preseason.
Almost any quarterback they bring in at this point -- whether through a trade, a waiver claim or a free-agent signing -- would be in the same position as Young in terms of learning a new offense.