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C-Mac
08-26-2007, 10:40 AM
By ADAM TEICHER
The Kansas City Star

Damon Huard, the quintessential journeyman quarterback, finally has a team to call his own.

For how long is another matter, but for the Sept. 9 regular-season opener against the Texans in Houston, Huard will be the Chiefs’ starting quarterback.

Huard beat out Brodie Croyle, who needed only to show coach Herm Edwards anything of substance in the first three preseason games. Croyle, who threw three interceptions, couldn’t manage that.

Edwards had little choice but to go with Huard, who also hasn’t played well in the preseason but was the NFL’s second-rated passer last year while filling in for the injured Trent Green.

“He gives us the best chance to win on the road in Houston,” Edwards said. “Our team will rally around him. He brings a bit of calmness in the huddle for us right now, which I think we need, and some stability at that position. We haven’t been very consistent on offense.

“There are certain things you know he’s not going to do, or you’re pretty sure about it. You know he’s going to protect the football. We can’t turn the ball over right now. We just can’t. It kills drives, and it kills momentum and it keeps our defense out on the field too long.”

Between that lukewarm endorsement and Edwards’ history with quarterback changes, Huard may not have the job for long. In 2002, Edwards, while coaching the New York Jets, made young Chad Pennington the starter five games into the season over veteran Vinny Testaverde.

The Jets that year started 1-3 but rallied under Pennington, finishing 9-7 and winning the AFC East title. Edwards has said he sees much of Pennington in Croyle’s play.

Asked how long until Croyle gets his turn, Edwards said: “I’m a big guy about production. If you’re producing, you play. If there comes a point where a player is not producing, it doesn’t matter what position he plays. You have to give other people an opportunity.

“Brodie Croyle has a great future for us. He will one day be the starting quarterback for this football team. You can see a lot of flashes, a lot of potential in the guy. But it’s all about winning and all about winning now.”

The move was well-received in the locker room, though players were trying hard to appear not to be taking sides.

“We know what (Huard) has to offer,” guard Brian Waters said. “We know what he gives to us. Damon brings stability. He brings consistency.”

The decision qualifies as something of an upset. From the moments after last season ended, Edwards has been liberal with his praise of Croyle. Trent Green in the spring asked for a trade to Miami because he thought the quarterback competition would be skewed toward Croyle.

Things would have wound up differently had Croyle not appeared lost during the preseason. Edwards didn’t want to play Croyle if he was overwhelmed.

“(Huard) can move the team,” Edwards said. “He’s been in the huddle with these guys before. They have some confidence in the guy because he’s done that.

“(The quarterback) gets the blame for everything. When a guy drops the ball, you get the blame. When a guy doesn’t make a block, you get the blame. When you throw an interception, you get the blame.

“You have to take the bullets for the team. That’s why you have to have a strong-willed and strong-minded guy that can’t get distracted by everything that’s said, good or bad. Damon’s had a great focus his whole career. That’s why he’s been able to do the things he’s been able to accomplish.”

Croyle completed just 44 percent of his preseason passes with one touchdown and three interceptions.

“They didn’t feel I was ready to go,” Croyle said. “Obviously, I didn’t show it at the game. I had the perfect opportunity to go out there and make my claim. I didn’t do it. They were kind of waiting for me to go do it, and I didn’t.”

It’s probably more accurate to say Croyle lost the starting spot than Huard won it. In two preseason games, Huard failed to lead the Chiefs to a touchdown.

“I was observing the situation and wanting somebody to come forward to take the job. It never happened that way,” Edwards acknowledged. “(Huard) earned it in the way he played last year. He’s a veteran guy coming back, and you have to take the job from the guy. It was his job, basically.”

Huard isn’t about to give it back. He spent 10 years rightfully wondering whether any team would make him its starting quarterback.

At 34, Huard has only 14 career starts, eight of them coming last year for the injured Green. He re-signed with the Chiefs last winter hoping for the chance, but knowing it might not come.

Still, he was in no mood to celebrate after receiving the news from Edwards

“It’s good news, but there’s still a lot of work left to do,” Huard said. “It’s my job to help this team win some football games now.

“I felt real good up there in River Falls (at training camp). I think the coaches were happy with the things I did. I wish we had scored some more points in the preseason games, but we’ll get it going.”

Huard didn’t practice Saturday because of a sore calf muscle that also kept him from working last week or playing in Thursday night’s loss to New Orleans. Edwards said it was unlikely Huard would play in the final preseason game Thursday night against the Rams in St. Louis.

Deberg_1990
08-26-2007, 10:47 AM
Huard = The least talented Chiefs starting QB since Steve Peuller

OnTheWarpath58
08-26-2007, 10:48 AM
“There are certain things you know he’s not going to do, or you’re pretty sure about it. You know he’s going to protect the football. We can’t turn the ball over right now. We just can’t. It kills drives, and it kills momentum and it keeps our defense out on the field too long.”


Other drive killers:

Fumbles.

Overthrowing RB's on 3rd down screen passes.

This garbage about Huard protecting the football is absolute BS.

NINE FUMBLES is not protecting the ball.

Just because we were fortunate enough to recover 7-8 of them does not mean he's protecting the ball.

It means we were ****ing lucky.

wazu
08-26-2007, 10:55 AM
Huard = The least talented Chiefs starting QB since Steve Peuller

QB rating second only to Payton Manning, all while passing behind an absolutely awful offensive line last year. I can understand wanting to go with Croyle. I personally did as well. But Huard is more than capable.

And if he does a 180 and starts stinking it up, then Croyle can come off the bench as the hero to save the day rather than having the weight of the world on his shoulders.

BigMeatballDave
08-26-2007, 10:57 AM
Herm Edwards = Coward

htismaqe
08-26-2007, 10:59 AM
QB rating second only to Payton Manning, all while passing behind an absolutely awful offensive line last year. I can understand wanting to go with Croyle. I personally did as well. But Huard is more than capable.

And if he does a 180 and starts stinking it up, then Croyle can come off the bench as the hero to save the day rather than having the weight of the world on his shoulders.

Huard proved he is a VERY capable BACKUP.

All the more reason to start Croyle, because if he bombs, you have an insurance policy.

If Huard bombs, Croyle HAS to play, and all the Huard backers say he's not ready.

Starting the career backup just makes zero sense.

Deberg_1990
08-26-2007, 11:01 AM
And if he does a 180 and starts stinking it up, then Croyle can come off the bench as the hero to save the day rather than having the weight of the world on his shoulders.


Im fairly certain that was the thinking behind the decision. Let the Veteran start and if the team starts to stink it up, then bring Brodie in and let him play.

Kind of like what Dallas did with Romo and Denver with Cutler last year.

Crashride
08-26-2007, 11:03 AM
“There are certain things you know he’s not going to do, or you’re pretty sure about it. You know he’s going to protect the football. We can’t turn the ball over right now. We just can’t. It kills drives, and it kills momentum and it keeps our defense out on the field too long.”


Other drive killers:

Fumbles.

Overthrowing RB's on 3rd down screen passes.

This garbage about Huard protecting the football is absolute BS.

NINE FUMBLES is not protecting the ball.

Just because we were fortunate enough to recover 7-8 of them does not mean he's protecting the ball.

It means we were ****ing lucky.

Most of his fumbles are from when he gets hit from his blind side. Lets not forget who our LT was last year and who the new LT is now...

htismaqe
08-26-2007, 11:03 AM
Im fairly certain that was the thinking behind the decision. Let the Veteran start and if the team starts to stink it up, then bring Brodie in and let him play.

Kind of like what Dallas did with Romo and Denver with Cutler last year.

The problem is that Denver is now 12 months ahead of us. We're always trying to catch up. It's frustrating.

htismaqe
08-26-2007, 11:04 AM
Most of his fumbles are from when he gets hit from his blind side. Lets not forget who our LT was last year and who the new LT is now...

If that's the case, how is Huard giving us a better chance to win?

You basically just admitted that Huard is GOING to fumble this year.

TEX
08-26-2007, 11:34 AM
Im fairly certain that was the thinking behind the decision. Let the Veteran start and if the team starts to stink it up, then bring Brodie in and let him play.

Kind of like what Dallas did with Romo and Denver with Cutler last year.

EXACTLY! :clap:

TEX
08-26-2007, 11:35 AM
The problem is that Denver is now 12 months ahead of us. We're always trying to catch up. It's frustrating.

I understand but let's set our own pace and work withinn our own schedule. Sometimes if you rush things you can't make up ground. In fact, you fall even farther behind.

Chris Meck
08-26-2007, 11:40 AM
I tell you what-

a QB that fumbles the ball away is usually WORSE than an INT, field position-wise.

Elven touchdowns, One INT, and 9 fumbles. Or:
11 TD's, 10 TO's.

Doesn't look so pretty now, does it?