You always know that feeling you get when you know everything is going to end badly. Call it the doomsday effect, call it being hopefully pessimistic, call it watching every Black Mirror episode, whatever; just know that one team is feeling that sinking ship feeling right now.
Their quarterback is blowing his team’s chances. Here are his stats through 11 games: 2,307 passing yards, 12 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, a 59.5 completion percentage, 5.77 yards per attempt, and just 210 yards per game. Whose passing stats are these?
Guess Who: Can You Name the Struggling Quarterback?
At first glance, Case Keenum or Ryan Fitzpatrick came to mind right? But Keenum and Fitzpatrick aren’t blowing any significant chances, as the Los Angeles Rams and New York Jets have been eliminated from the playoffs for the past few weeks now. Maybe Carson Palmer was the answer, but at 210 yards a game you can cross him off. Palmer is better than just tossing a measly 210 yards per game. The same goes for Cam Newton, even in the midst of a nightmare season.
Here’s what the mystery quarterback’s coach said after their recent loss:
“I think one of the keys to being a good quarterback is being accurate. We work on accuracy with all of our quarterbacks all the time. I think that’s a key. I think [he] will be the first one to tell you. I think there’s been very many times where he has been accurate and there’s been other times where he hasn’t been as accurate as he needs to be. He’s working very hard to be as accurate and improve his accuracy all the time. We work hard on it with him.”
Figured out it yet? A Joe Flacco guess is close. But Flacco’s never averaged an atrocious 5.77 yards per attempt, and John Harbaugh doesn’t release statements like that about his Super Bowl winning quarterback.
So who could it be?
And the Answer Is………….
If you guessed the Houston Texans‘ #17 Brock Osweiler, then you’re spot on (although guessing every Cleveland Browns quarterback the last few years wouldn’t totally be off either).
Again, here’s how bad Brock’s been. He’s 29th out of 32 quarterbacks in completion percentage (59.5%), and dead last in yards per pass (5.77). Quantifying that, no other passer dwells in the five yards per pass average. And going back a few years here’s some of the company he resides with: Blaine Gabbert, Jimmy Clausen, Blaine Gabbert a second time, Colt McCoy, JaMarcus Russell, and Brady Quinn. I’m not making that up.
Does Osweiler have a bad coach that doesn’t really help him? Yes, but you can’t totally blame Bill O’Brien either. It’s not like he was out there making consistently horrible throws. Breaking it down even further, here’s some of the worst ranked passing defenses he’s faced this year with their averages and what he passed for in parentheses:
31st Indianapolis Colts 278 (269)
28th Oakland Raiders 273 (243)
25th Tennessee Titans 270 (254)
26th San Diego Chargers 271 (246)
So even against the easiest pass defenses he struggles. That’s a huge problem. Adding to the misery. He’s equipped with a top-ten receiver, an explosive rookie wideout, and a top-five running back and still can’t produce. Like having eggs, bacon, and pancake mix at your disposal and still screwing up breakfast.
On top of that, he’s been gifted a cupcake schedule (teams over .500 in italics) – Chicago Bears, Kansas City Chiefs, New England Patriots, Titans, a healthy Minnesota Vikings, Colts, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Raiders, Chargers, Green Bay Packers, Colts again, Jaguars again, Cincinnati Bengals, Titans again. That’s six tough teams out of sixteen games.
So What Happens Next?
An interesting thought going forward now: If he can’t get the job done or even if he does, does dumping him for someone like Tony Romo when the Houston Texans still have to guarantee him all that money make sense? That’s right, trade/cut rumors are already swirling.
Forget that he’s been outplayed by his replacement in Denver and also a third string quarterback (Jacoby Brissett) earlier during the year, because for now he has four games left to prove himself – Colts, Jaguars, Bengals, and Titans. Just know that Texans fans can’t shake that sinking ship feeling. They’ve experienced enough already.