Are the Bucs QBs cursed?

Call it the Curse of the Dilferino, but since Trent Dilfer left in 2000 this team has had five different starting quarterbacks, and that number is likely to increase to six with Chris Simms injury. Thanks heavens, all reports are that Simms should be fine but his season could be over especially if the Bucs are out of contention. Here are the quarterbacks who could possibly make a start next week with their chances of doing so.

Bruce Gradkowski: The sixth round rookie looked good at times during the preseason and moved up the depth chart past Tim Rattay. But he's still a rookie and neither the defense nor running game has looked good enough to make his transition easier.

Chances to start: 55%

Tim Rattay: Rattay, who was added after Griese went down with an injury in week 6, has the most experience in Gruden's offense after Simms. He also looked bad in the preseason.

Chances to start: 30%

Rich Gannon: He is obviously familiar with Gruden's offense, and I would be surprised if Gruden hadn't already thought about giving him a call. The only question is can Gruden lure him out of retirement?

Chance to start: 9%

Jay Fiedler: Fiedler has a good deal of starting experience but he has also been suffering from an injured shoulder. Fiedler was with the Bucs during training camp but was cut because his shoulder injury was slow to heal.

Chances to start: 5%

Other: The Bucs could trade for Brett Favre, they could sign Jeff George, with two weeks to go before their next game against the Saints Gruden and Bruce Allen has a good deal of time to make a decision.

Chances to start: 1%

Whoever earns the start it is too early to write off the Bucs season, although I tend to agree with BH, it's gonna be a long season.

Update: Pro Football Talk is already questioning Simms toughness playing with a ruptured spleen.

Update #2: Grads has been named the starter for the next game.


Gnorb said...

Since I haven't gotten to watch any of the games yet (Damn you, South Florida Blackouts!!!!), I haven't exactly seen much other than numbers on a page and replays. Still, the numbers tell a good story.

First of all, what decission Gruden makes here with QB will be largely based on what his offensive line can do. If he can trust them to protect the passer, then my guess is Gruden may well be looking to bring Gannon out of retirement. Why? 3 reasons:

1) Familiar with Gruden's offense.

2) Gannon is like Testaverde: a proven long-time QB. (Which begs the question, why the hell did the Bucs let go of Brad Johnson?!)

3) Gannon can train Gradkowski just as well as Gruden can. This is something Chris really couldn't do, and takes Gruden's attention away to be able to work with the rest of the team.

As for your other scenarios, I agree that the percentages of things *actually* happening are very accurate. For the next game they'll likely pulling either Gradkowski or Rattay into starting, but still, I expect that we haven't seen the last of Rich Gannon.

As for Favre: I know, outside chance, but still, the question is would you really *want* him here? Not that he's not good -- even now, he is. But the question is whether his style will mesh with Gruden's offense.

As for Jay Fiedler: I'll burn that new training facility down if the bring that dude back in.

All in all, I expect one of the following:

(1) They bring in Gannon (or someone else very familiar with Gruden's offense), but start Gradkowski the next game. Depending on Grad's performance, Gannon will either be made the starter or, if they need someone more mobile (due to a weak OL), then Rattay will start if Grad blows it too badly.

(2) They bring in another second stringer from somewhere else in the league, someone who's not spectacular but solid, and we sit back and talk about our love for the game, and enjoy the empty bandwaggon. If the OL can't perform, then we also start guessing on who the next QB we bring in will be 'cause you know whoever starts will likely get hurt.

* Note: We could always bring in Ryan Leaf. Or Heath Shculer, if that whole Congress thing doesn't work out for him. :-) And then of course, there's still Shaun King...

Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

Too bad Brad Johnson is busy.

I never thought I'd say this but what is Rob Johnson up to?

(I just threw up a little bit.)

Anonymous said...

Not sure if you saw it yet, but Gruden today said that Gradkowski will be the starting QB against New Orleans.

Douglas Scott S. said...

just makes you realize how crazy the NFL is. you can never be too confident going into the season. even though it appears Seattle will make the playoffs. the previous 5 super bowl runner ups hadnt i think. i mean how do you explain that.

bucs won NFC South last year, now i wouldnt be surprised if they finish 5-11.

i wish yall had held on for the win yesterday now that it appears Simms is out for the season and the Bucs probably wont be a factor anymore. id rather you guys be 1-2 and the panthers be 0-3.

but anyways, go falcons tonight

Adam said...

I feel really bad about Chris Simms. It's pathetic to know that your favorite team's offensive line is so bad the quarter had to have his spleen removed after the game.

I wanted to let Chris know that there are a lot of us out there pulling for him so I've created GetWellChris.com - a simple forum where fans can show their support.

(Note: I'm making no money off this site. Paying for it out of pocket as a way of supporting my team and my QB.)