It was the perfect set-up. Pryor was fighting for a job and had one last shot to prove himself against the team that didn’t want him. He’d played against that defense in practice. He’d played on that grass and dirt baseball field. He thinks he should still be the Raiders’ starting quarterback and has an opportunity to show Oakland that they messed up.
Did he do enough with his chance? Not quite. It didn’t help him that Derek Carr looked very sharp for the Raiders, making it clear they have the quarterback of the future.
Pryor completed 11 of 17 passes for 134 yards and a score plus 4 carries for 12 yards. One touchdown on five drives was just not sufficient. His footwork did not look clean. He appeared hesitant. The 33-yard touchdown to Phil Bates was a lovely throw, but most of his passes did not look as sharp. He still has that loopy delivery that all tall quarterbacks must relearn.
When BJ Daniels got some time in the fourth quarter, he stole the job. He was 5 of 9 for 71 yards and a score. He ran twice for 34 yards, but it wasn’t about the numbers. He looked more decisive. His feet were planted when he threw. He didn’t look scared to be there. He looked like he’d been studying Russell Wilson.
So what now for Pryor? I wrote earlier that what would be good for him, but unlikely to happen, is to end up in a place like Denver. He has loads of physical talent but needs to polish his passing. Some time behind Peyton Manning or another veteran would be perfect. The Denver Broncos will need a new starting quarterback within a couple years. Pryor could be ready by then.
I like Tyson’s idea that the St. Louis Rams would be a good fit. Rather than a place to develop, it would be a chance to start now with Sam Bradford injured again.
The Seahawks are not in a position, thank goodness, to be developing a young quarterback. Tarvaris Jackson is a reliable veteran backup. I expected Seattle to keep only two quarterbacks, but if you must pick a third, I like Daniels over Pryor. He has another year with the system and plays with more confidence.
It was fun to watch Pryor play and I hope he finds the right place to perfect his craft.