The race for the #2 quarterback job with the Kansas City Chiefs appears to be on, as both Brady Quinn and Ricky Stanzi got extensive playing time in last night’s 27-17 win over the Arizona Cardinals that opened the preseason. Could Stanzi, in his second year in the NFL, but yet to throw a regular season pass, move up the ranks and take the job for the more-renowned Quinn.
Each quarterback had something they could take out of their stat lines in Friday night’s game. Quinn had the efficiency, completing 7-of-13 passes for 81 yards, in sharp contrast to Stanzi completing just two of seven throws. But Quinn threw an interception while Stanzi did not, and the latter’s 42 total yards meant his completions counted substantially more than Quinn’s.
In either case, I believe the #2 job should be Quinn’s to lose. He’s never gotten a real chance to succeed in the NFL and is a little more of a proto-type NFL quarterback than Stanzi. The latter has a justly earned “all he does is win” reputation from his college days at Iowa, but that does injustice to Quinn’s time at Notre Dame. The Irish have only played in two major bowl games since 1994 and both times it was with Quinn at the helm (2005-06). The fact Notre Dame’s seasons were still perceived as a disappointment says more about media coverage of the program than it does about Quinn’s ability to lead a team.
I like Stanzi, certainly don’t mean to knock him and could easily see him earning the #2 job someday. But “someday” shouldn’t be now, unless Quinn plays himself out of the opportunity. In either case, it’s good for Chiefs fans that this debate centers around quality, and even better that starter Matt Cassell’s strong performance ensures the debate doesn’t move one rung up the depth chart, at least for now.
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