The Vikings Quarterback Shuffle

Posted by Mike Wobschall on December 22, 2010 – 12:54 pm

Oh let me count the ways the Vikings 2010 season is different than the 2009 season. Actually I don’t want to do that. But perhaps the biggest difference is the stability of the QB position.

A year ago the position was as stable as possible, with Brett Favre producing the best season of his career and not missing a game. This season, however, things haven’t gone as well and the Vikings currently find themselves in the midst of a QB shuffle.

Since December 7, the Vikings have made the following QB roster moves: signed R.J. Archer to the practice squad (12/7), placed Tarvaris Jackson on IR (12/16), signed Patrick Ramsey to the Active Roster (12/16), signed R.J. Archer to the Active Roster (12/20), waived R.J. Archer (12/21) and signed Rhett Bomar to the Active Roster (12/21).

And with all of that, Favre suffered a concussion on Monday night. Vikings Interim Head Coach Leslie Frazier described Favre’s status this week as “day-to-day” and indicated doctors have not cleared him to return to the field. As a result, rookie Joe Webb – who replaced Favre on Monday night – is in line to start on Sunday night against the Philadelphia Eagles.

If Favre is indeed unable to play on Sunday night, Frazier said Webb would be the starter with Ramsey as the backup and Bomar as the 3rd (emergency) QB. Got all that?

Frazier was asked about the his newest QB – Bomar – while meeting with reporters on Wednesday and he indicated the Vikings signed the former University of Oklahoma and Sam Houston State passer with a combination of thoughts in mind.

“We needed a live arm, a guy who we thought could come in and maybe in an emergency give us a little bit more than what we were getting otherwise,” Frazier said. “Not knowing what Brett’s situation is going to be from day-to-day or week-to-week with the games we have remaining, but also to maybe take a look at him for the future. So it’s a combination of the two.”

Asked what stood out to Frazier about Bomar, the Vikings coach said a “strong arm” and his intellect.

“In the little time we spent with him yesterday and this morning, he’s done a good job of grasping some of the concepts we have on offense,” Frazier said. “We knew of his intelligence, so to see how he’s responded has been a boost for us. So we’ll just see how much we can give him as the week goes on.”

As for Ramsey, whom the Vikings acquired last week, Frazier has been impressed so far.

“We knew that he had a background in this offense,” Frazier said. “But we didn’t know it was quite as extensive as it turned out to be. We really weren’t concerned, if he had to get in the game, from a knowledge standpoint on Monday night. He has a great deal of knowledge about what we’re doing and how we’re doing things and what we expect. That’s one of the things that really impresses you is the way he studied and the way he’s been able to comprehend what we’re trying to get done from a concept standpoint.”

All of the roster shuffling presents a good illustration of two points: 1) building and maintaining an NFL roster is a never-ending process that requires constant evaluation and 2) stabilizing the QB position is paramount to both long-term and short-term success. The obvious reaction from a fan’s standpoint to this blog entry and to the Vikings current QB situation is to call for the organization to find that coveted long-term answer at the most important position on the field.

Obviously it’s much more complicated than just going to the store and buying a QB of the future. So, this is an issue that will be on-going for the Vikings throughout the offseason and leading into the 2011 season. But it’s also an issue that I’m confident will be resolved by the organization in a way that will lead to success in 2011.

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QB Decision To Be Made In The Next Couple Of Days

Posted by cjsiewert on December 16, 2010 – 1:58 pm

With Brett Favre’s sprained throwing shoulder placing his availability for Monday night’s game against the Chicago Bears in question, coupled with the decision to put Tarvaris Jackson on injured reserve, the Vikings signed journeyman QB Patrick Ramsey to add depth to an injury-plagued QB unit.

Ramsey, an 8-year veteran out of Tulane, spent his first 4 seasons with the Washington Redskins, the 2006 season with the NY Jets, 2007-08 with the Denver Broncos, 2009 with the Tennessee Titans and Detroit Lions and was with the Jacksonville Jaguars and Miami Dolphins this year. He hasn’t played in a game since 2008 and hasn’t started since 2005.

Ramsey’s most productive season was in 2003 where the 6-2, 225-pounder started and played in 11 games completing 179 of 337 passes for 2,166 yards, 14 TDs and 9 INTs. His career totals are 511 completions on 913 attempts for 5,930 yards, 35 TDs and 30 INTs.

The signing of Ramsey doesn’t necessitate his presence on the playing field this week, but rather gives the Vikings more depth at the QB position that is lacking it. As far as Favre’s status goes, Vikings Interim Head Coach Leslie Frazier mentioned during his Thursday press conference that his condition would be made clearer as the week progresses.

“We’re trying to determine when and if he’ll be able to do anything at all this week,” Frazier said. “So we’ll see what happens probably a little bit later in the week.”

Even with Favre’s availability up in the air and Jackson placed on injured reserve, there are still uncertainties on who will be the Vikings starting QB come Monday night. Joe Webb is the team’s #3 QB, but has been dealing with a hamstring injury that he suffered early in the game against the Buffalo Bills a week-and-a-half ago.

“We’ll see,” Frazier said in response when asked if Webb would be the starter. “Just give it a couple of days and see if things change. We’ll see what happens.”

In just a matter of a week, the Vikings have gone from a team that never had to worry about its starting QB, since Favre had started an NFL-record 297 consecutive times before, to a team that may be starting a QB who has never made a start and has played in only 2.

Given the circumstances, though, Frazier acknowledged that Webb would be taking reps with the 1st team offense in practice this week and that the rookie QB is up to the challenge. Also, the interim coach said that Webb “may be passed that hamstring (injury).”

“Just in talking with Joe, he’s really excited about the opportunity,” Frazier said. “He can’t wait to line up and play and have a chance to start. If that happens, he’s not running away from it and we have confidence that he can get it done.”

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