Oakland Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor wasn’t himself on Sunday at MetLife Stadium. Not based on the interception he threw. Not judging by the 11-for-26 accuracy he displayed.
Rather, the telling statistic for Pryor was the 19 yards rushing. In nine career starts dating back to last December, it’s his lowest single-game rushing total.
We knew Pryor had injured a knee in the blowout loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Nov. 3, but all indications were that the third-year signal caller was all systems go for the New York Giants on Sunday.
Man, did they read that wrong. When your hyper-athletic quarterback is suddenly rendered … un-hyperly athletic, maybe? … it’s going to be a much bigger problem than if a quarterback with ordinary or less-than-ordinary speed and athleticism have a leg problem.
Consider this, Dan Marino came back from a torn Achillies tendon in less than a year for the Miami Dolphins in the 1990s, played the rest of his career with a noticeable limp and no one could tell a difference. Why? Because Marino couldn’t outrun a freaking garden slug at his very best, that’s why.
But with Pryor, it was noticeable. Very noticeable.
Mobile quarterback rendered not very mobile playing behind an offensive line that is, to put it generously, porous. Methinks you’d be inclined to rush one’s throws in that situation, too.
Pryor has struggled the last four games, ranking dead last in the NFL in quarterback rating at 44.2 and completion percentage (50.8) among qualified passers.
So maybe, just maybe, the Raiders should consider adding a third quarterback to the roster. The only other signal caller on the 53-man right now is rookie Matt McGloin, whose first NFL action came in the fourth quarter of the Philadelphia game when the outcome has been decided.
Is he really the guy you want thrown into the fire if the game is still hanging in the balance? Seriously?
The most obvious answer is no longer available; Matt Flynn, who went through training camp with the Raiders and even started a game before he was released, signed with the Green Bay Packers on Monday.
So who’s out there? David Carr has gone unsigned since he was released by the Giants at the end of the preseason. Trent Edwards, a Stanford product, is available, but hasn’t seen any real playing time since 2010. The Raiders let Matt Leinart go at the end of the preseason, so he’d at least know the playbook (so long as the play calls focused on throws of six yards or less).
Then there are the mobile athletic guys with directionally impaired throwing motions—Vince Young and the quarterback who shall not be named lest he blow up my comments section with raging fanboys and even more raging haters (Tim Tebow, anyone?)
None of those quarterbacks is a viable long-term option. But with Pryor obviously limited athletically by the knee and McGloin greener than the underside of a frog’s chin, it might be nice for the Raiders to have someone who has at least been on the field in something other than a mop-up situation.