The fine line of finding a quarterback

Posted by Darren Urban on January 6, 2014 – 11:39 am

So if you are the Cincinnati Bengals, what are you thinking about with Andy Dalton? And what does it say about “finding” your long-term quarterback?

These questions are not easily answered. The Cardinals have been looking for their “long-term” quarterback since, well, since they moved to Arizona. There were the Kurt Warner years, but the time where Warner was both the unquestioned and winning (a key adjective) quarterback for this franchise was less than three seasons: A few games into the 2007 season through 2009. Carson Palmer has come along, and was 10-6 in his first season, and likely is the Cards’ starter in 2014, but how long does he have?

Again, finding the young replacement isn’t simple. Look at Dalton. He has won nine, 10 and 11 games in his three seasons in Cincinnati. The Bengals have made the playoffs every single season. It’s a foundation many teams — even the Cards — would love to have with a quarterback after he was drafted. He threw for almost 4,300 yards this season and already has 80 TD passes in his young career. It’s the definition of finding a long-term guy … right?

Yet the Bengals have lost all three playoff games Dalton has quarterbacked, and he has not played well in any of them. He is, not surprisingly, getting hammered about it again and there are some who think the Bengals should look elsewhere. Now, there are QB-needy teams across the league who would probably love to have Dalton. Yet his situation underscores the minefield that is filling that position.

Russell Wilson, Andrew Luck and Cam Newton have worked well. It looks like Colin Kaepernick has too (although I think he still tends to be more up and down than you’d like at this early stage) and Nick Foles flourished in Chip Kelly’s offense. Side note, you look at the playoff teams and the winners and it drives home the point this league is about good quarterback play.

Is Matthew Stafford the answer, even with all his gaudy stats? (Ken Whisenhunt may be hired soon to find out.) Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder were not. Sam Bradford? It’s no wonder Steve Keim says he has to fall in love with a QB to want to draft him, because let’s face it, if you do draft one early, you are married to him for a few years to see if he works out.

And, in the case of someone like Dalton, you still may be wondering if he is working out even when it seems like he is.


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41 Responses to “The fine line of finding a quarterback”

  1. By Travis on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Gingers are suspect

  2. By gbrim on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    If I was the Cincy front office I would take a hard look at Jay Gruden as OC, and his system. Lots of talent on that team.

  3. By Bigtom on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Shoot, I wish we would have drafted Andy Dalton. Instead, we drafted Ryan Williams during that round.

  4. By Patrick Hoog aka Don't Take Losses on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    On point Darren.

  5. By wampag on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    D- read an article on PFT about Lovie Smith using cover 2 and Revis might not be such a great fit, can you imagine him and PP and TM…any chance??

  6. By Darren Urban on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Wampag —

    RE: Revis

    Lovie made very clear today there is a spot for Revis to thrive in his D.

  7. By Jeff Gollin on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Darren – Agree, but logical conclusion is that much of what goes into finding a franchise QB is a matter of (no pun intended) luck.

  8. By Darren Urban on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Jeff Gollin —

    RE: QB

    I don’t disagree.

  9. By Rich on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Regarding the cards QB situation – I’d give Carson a 2 year extension. Draft a QB in 2nd or 3rd round and develop for 2 years.

  10. By Chris B on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    And the recent showings of some of the above mentioned QB’s makes me proud that Graves and Whiz avoided drafting them. If you go back and look, Graves/Whiz passed on QBs like Gabbert, Ponder, Locker, Freeman, Dalton, Clausen, and even Flacco to an extent. And the ones that have had success were gone before the Cards picked in their respective rounds; Kaep, Wilson, etc. Some might say that the Cards should have grabbed Wilson in the first, but that’s using hindsight and an unfair judgement since 32 teams passed on Wilson twice.

    A coach and usually a GM are married to the success of their QB. Only rare exception survive (see Ryan, Rex) a bad high QB draft pick.

  11. By erik on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    LMAO, Travis! I was gonna post the same thing!

  12. By John The Draft Guy on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Really, People are questioning a 3 year QB who has lead his team to the playoffs three years in a row.

    Peyton won the division now 9 times. only twice has he played in the AFC championship and once the superbowl .

    Is he not a franchise QB ? Do you think the colts were wondering if he was a long term answer when he struggled to get far in the playoffs?

    The fact is, it is hard to win in the NFL and even harder to win in the playoffs.

    Getting your team in the playoffs gives your team a shot. Then the team must play well enough to win.

    Rodgers and Peyton are the best QBs in football. One superbowl a piece. Brees, one superbowl. It is not just the QB.

    Did Dalton fumble on the 3 yard line or was it Bernard? Did Dalton drop that potential long TD or was that Green? Sure he threw 3 picks that hurt the team. But they wouldn’t have even been there if it wasn’t for Dalton.

    QBs are drafted and expected to be perfect as rookies or year two. By year three, they are questioned if they are the right QB. In this case, stats tell me he performs. Wins tell me he performs. Playoffs appearences tell me he performs. But to question if he is the guy in his 3rd year because he hasn’t won a playoff game is crazy.

    Yes, Dalton needs to play better in playoffs. But to consider writing him off at this stage of his career makes no sense.

  13. By John The Draft Guy on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    I think the most interesting name on the list is Sam Bradford.

    The rams passed on RG3 because they believed in him. But here is another #2 pick. Bortles or Bridgewater will be there.

    I know Fisher says he believes in Bradford. In fact the rams could make a nice trade to move out of the two spot.

    But with Bradfords injury history and average performance, can you pass on another QB?

    As for Locker, he may only get one year to prove himself with a new coach coming in or he may be out. Gifted athletically, you have to wonder if a change of teams might help him blossom.

  14. By John The Draft Guy on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    As for the cards,

    You have a QB who can win. There is no rush. If there is a QB who you love and drops to you, draft them. If not, dont.

    With Palmer in place, there is no need to reach. I like Bortles but he could go #1 overall. After him, there are a lot of guys with pluses and minuses. Keim and Arians do not NEED to draft a QB this year. So, they can sit back and see how it develops.

  15. By Scott H on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Chris B –

    Interesting post. But if you’re letting Graves and Whiz off the hook ( Proud of them??? ) simply because they did not draft the wrong QB, I have a hard time agreeing with you. Regardless, they failed to address the QB situation over a THREE year period and, well…that is why they are not here any more. Granted, going after Kolb was the right move at the time, but…it didn’t work. By the same token, signing Derek Anderson AND sticking with him as long as they did showed awful judgement on their part.

    Also, in regard to your claim that the better QB’s were always gone before their turn in the draft, why do they get a pass for that? In reality as we know it, teams sometimes have to be aggressive and move up in the draft to get where they need to be to get the players they want. Assuming they ever wanted one of the QB’s available in the drafts between 2010 and 2012, why did they have to settle for where they were in the draft order?

  16. By ored on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    we just need to stay the course and not start jumping off high places.keim said the o-line is 1st order of business,i agree,build that up and you improve the running game and the qb play at the same time,

    we have a solid defense and as long as we keep that and not neglect it,we can concentrate on the other side of the ball,improve the ground game so we can keep the defense fresh,also opens up qb all works together,control the clock and the D stays fresh and opens up down the field or play action.
    imho we need palmer as long as he’s effective and wants to stay,sure we need an understudy but that should come after we improve the o-line,safety/secondary,find a young olb,get a young un to learn from docket.

    TE play hurt us last year,getting burned repeatedly defensively and our own lack of inspired play at the position-i know the o-line needs work and we need a young qb to start learning,but target more secondary help and a stud TE of our own will payoff hugely,LT position needs immediate help only FA can give,even the top young tackles drafted the last few years have struggled at first,the draft is fairly deep in o-line help,both at tackles and stud run blockers,we do these things and we cut down on the big pass plays against us,we run the ball more effectively and increase possession time,give palmer a big shiny new reciever and more options to work with.there are a couple of tackles that are stud run blockers that also have the feet to be coached up in a couple of years,even levi was a decent RT and a road grader on the run,never understood why we never switched him back to the right side,he made PB alternate one year i think.

    the only thin spot this years draft appears to be safety,if we can swing a good free agent,fine,or even have a shot at the bama safety it would be worth trading up for,if not there go the north carolina connection again and try for the TE and then get some more CB help,keim has already shown himself more than competent and i’m sure he has plans already going,should be an exciting off season and next year…….my two cents worth.

  17. By ored on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    really should’nt go there,but just imagine a 240lb.running back that’s young and healthy,feet like mendenhall and power like beanie when he was healthy,ohio state back would be cheaper than resigning mendenhall and could put us in the same circle of ground game as 49’rs and seattle.

  18. By Jim E. on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Anything is better then Carson “give the game away” Palmer

  19. By Scott H on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Like some others, I like Andy Dalton and think he will be just fine. Any QB who is getting to the playoffs his first 3 years in the league is doing an awful lot of things right. Are people REALLY criticizing him for having no playoff success yet??? Please. Hey, if he goes back to the playoffs for the next 3 years and still has no wins, I’ll take another look at him. By NFL QB standards, he is still a pup. He’ll be a big dog soon and I think that big dog is gonna eat something!

    The Bengals should look elsewhere??? You gotta be kidding me. Ask the Raiders, Browns, Jaguars, Bills, Titans, Buccs, Vkings, or some other teams ( like the Cardinals between 2010-2012 ) if they would be looking elsewhere if THEY had Andy Dalton right now.

    Wilson, Luck, and Newton are real deal, big-time QB’s. Probably the 3 best QB’s to enter the NFL over the last several years.

    I think Kaepernick is not far behind. But how long can his freakish athleticism stay a part of his game?

    Among young QB’s, I probably put Dalton right after Kaepernick. Right now, that is. Two years from now, maybe Dalton proves to be a better QB.

    Nick Foles? He has to do it for another season before I buy into him. He’s running their offense very well but the league always seems to catch up with QB’s like this. And he absolutely holds the ball too long at times. That is a problem if he can’t shake that habit.

    Stafford? Seems a better fantasy QB than a real one. Too inconsistent. Way too many INT’s this season.

    RGIII? Right now, no thanks. BUT I will say that I think the way the Redskins handled him this whole season was an absolute shame. Maybe he bounces back next year. The talent is there. But only 2 years in the league and has taken about 5 years worth of beatings.

    Sam Bradford? I’ll pass. No pun intended.

    Locker / Gabbert / Ponder? No, no way, and absolutely not.

    Carson Palmer? I expect him to be better next year and I’m just fine with that. With a better O-line, a better running game ( both of which are likely ) and the WR’s he has at his disposal? Sold!

  20. By Paul on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    John the Draft Guy- Peyton has actually played in 2 Super Bowls he beat the Bears in 2007 and lost to the Saints in 2010.

  21. By NJAzCardsFan on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Darren- Has Lindley progressed enough to be given a shot in the future for the Cards..??

    For the record, if Whiz/Graves could pick a QB they both would still be here. That was their downfall. If Whiz takes the Lions job he should ensure nothing happens to Stafford as he won’t find a comparable replacement…..

    If the 2008 Cards had this years defense they would have won the SB in 2008 and 2009….

  22. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    NJAz —

    RE: QB

    There is little question the ability to find a QB was the previous regime’s downfall. It usually is. Look at the coaches fired this offseason.

    As for Lindley, I think if the Cardinals add a QB they like, Lindley will be the odd man out.

  23. By Canadian Redbird on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply


    Any update on Mathieu and Alameda?

  24. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Canadian —

    RE: Mathieu/Ta’amu

    Not really.

  25. By Alexander on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    If Cards staff fall in love with a QB (maybe Derek Carr) do you see them possibly moving up to take him?

  26. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2014 | Reply

    Alexander —

    RE: Moving up to take a QB

    I don’t think Keim is adverse to moving up. But where? The Cards aren’t moving up from 20 to 5 to get a QB. Too costly. I could see them moving a spot or two.

  27. By Eazy E on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Their is a fine line but first you have to be real. Andy Dalton is a good qb but with the weapons he has at rb, wr, te, and o-line, he should have won 1 playoff game or performed better than he has in those games. Most QBs would almost die for the weaponry he possesses. The other QBs I will talk about one by one:

    Russell Wilson: 24-8, 1 Playoff win 1 Playoff loss, MVP candidate, one of the young Great QBs

    Andrew Luck: 22-10, comeback meister, 1 Playoff win 1 Playoff loss, imo the best young QB(see playoff game vs. Kansas City Chiefs)

    Cam Newton: 25-23, weapons nowhere close to Dalton’, 0-0 in playoffs, 2nd or 3rd best young QB imo, One of my favorite QBs period. Best package in terms of size, arm, mobility, accuracy, etc. in league history..

    Colin Kaerpernick: 19-7, weapons are nice and he is capitilizing, 3-1 in playoffs, right in the thick of the young great QBs, already been in the super bowl, and has also did a number on us

    Nick Foles: 10-8, outstanding season with 27 tds and 2 ints, MVP candidate, 0-1 in playoffs(first start), franchise QB tag is stamped like the other ones above him

    Matthew Stafford: Very talented QB but mechanics forsake him a little too much; can be undisciplined but franchise QB material

    Blaine Gabbert: Terrible and this is foresight on him, so glad Whiz didn’t draft him

    Christian Ponder: Many questioned the pick at 12(me included) No Way

    Jake Locker: Was playing pretty well before the injury, at least 1 more year as starter

    Sam Bradford: Definitely a keeper. No weapons up until this year and still needs more and has been very good for the most part; Health is key…

    Carson Palmer: He fits in with the Dalton’, Stafford’ of the world in that he can put up some numbers but not many wins and don’t give me this year when the defense was elite and the offense struggled for most of the year and Larry still ended up under 1K…..

    #Draft a QB #Manziel #Bridgewater #Young Guns #Etc. Etc.. Etc… #Vick #Another Veteran QB that’s better

  28. By Steve on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Darren: Speaking of Carson Palmer, any news on his sore right elbow? Do you anticipate he will be ready for OTAs and spring practices 100%?

  29. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Steve —

    RE: Palmer

    Palmer is healthy.

  30. By Eazy E on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Where is Carson going to lead us if he comes back? Not the playoffs and show not the super bowl! Colin, Russell, and Sam are young and getting better and better. Carson can play ”maybe” 2 more years MAX more like 1 and at what level!? We need to sign a veteran QB such as Vick who I believe is much better and especially when healthy. Carson is a statue and can’t move a lick when pressure comes which it inevitably will at times but Vick can. Or I would draft Johnny Football or Teddy Bridgewater or Tajh Boyd or somebody like that. We need our Colin, Russell, or Sam if no Vick or somebody such as that!!!

  31. By georgiebird on Jan 6, 2014 | Reply

    Good article on what’s ahead for the Cards in the search for a franchise QB- that’s a main reason why BA was hired.
    Dalton is a good QB but he needs better coaching. Also, the Bengals defense was bad forcing Rivers to throw only 16 times and giving up 200 yds rushing.
    A couple of years ago, Eli Manning was considered an elite QB but a couple of poor seasons has brought him back to the pack. Phillip Rivers, on the other hand, has been a playoff disappointment until his winning playoff game and now Rivers sits on top.
    It’s not a “fine line” it’s a “fickle line”. Most of the top QBs can win big games in the right situation- just ask Trent Dilfer.

  32. By Chris B on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Stats and wins don’t always equal talent. Tebow has more playoff wins than Dalton. Stafford has stats but not wins. Schaub has stats and wins. Not saying Dalton is bad, just not as good as people think. And comparing Manning to Dalton is just silly.

    Scott H-
    Do I excuse them? No. Graves and Whiz hitched their wagon to Kolb and suffered the consequences of that decision. But they also didn’t reach for a bad QB when everyone said they needed one. Saying the team needed to trade up in the draft is an asinine argument. Trade up for who? How much is the team asking or even if they are willing to trade? We can always say coulda-shoulda especially when using hindsight. I give them credit because they earned it in this regard.

    When you pick a QB early and he is a bust, it hurts your team for 5 years or more. Leinart was picked in 06; subtracting the 2.5 years Warner started, because we were winning, 06, 07, 10, 11, 12… that’s 5 years of struggle and recovery. I can point to a dozen teams that have suffered because of bad QB picks in the first round.

  33. By shannon robinson on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Thanks to Darren we have a good understanding of the Cards’ roster. If we use the resources of we can see the decisions open to Mr. Keim. First look at the roster for OLinemen as it stands now. Ten guys are listed as significant and available. A tip of the Cardinal Wing to the front office: Fanaika and Sowell are already signed for 2014, which means they are on a one year contract route like a lot players we brought in last year. Sendlein, Massie, Potter, and Colledge are signed through 2015 with Cooper and Watford, being drafted, are here for the duration. Now look at the money: Colledge is going to cost us $7.25 Million for each of the next two years which means some contract readjustment, but it’s clear that he’s going to continue to work for you or you’ll pay him a lot of money to work for someone else. Albert’s a great idea and he’ll cost us about $15 to 18 Million a year – my guess – is that what you want to do with your money? A fortunate draft of a LT would cost about $2.8 Million a year with a hefty bonus you’d be glad to pay. Sowell, Massie, Fanaika, Watford and Potter all average about $500 Thousand a year. Eric Winston will be available for us in March of later and was an excellent return on a one year 2.0 Million dollar investment. This all shows that Steve Keim already has traction and stability to do what he needs to do based on the opportunities that open up to him.

  34. By John The Draft Guy on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Chris B,

    Never compared Dalton to Peyton in means of talent. Just compared their situations. Manning struggled to get the colts over the hump as is Dalton.

    A better example might be Tony Romo.
    Romo is a good QB. I think if Dallas released him, there would be teams lining up to take him. But he cant seem to win when he needs to.

    But to be fair to Tony, he doesn’t play defense (ranked 32nd I believe). He doesnt do the play calling. I watch RBs and WRS either drop balls or fumble balls in crucial situations. Yet Tony is always blamed for the loses.

    I think if Dalton, Romo, or Schaub for that matter is going to be blamed for the loses, they should get credit for the wins too, don’t you think?

    So, lets give Dalton his due. He came to a team in shambles and lead them to 3 straight playoffs. We are talking about the Bengals. If we drafted Dalton and he lead the cards to 3 straight playoffs but wasnt able to get over the hump, would you dump him?

    Especially after all the failures the cards have had at that position?

    Well, I guess people on this board would call for his head. Palmer gave us the most wins the cards ever had (tied with 09) and people want him replaced. But as card fans have found out for many years, QBs who can win dont grow on trees and when you have one, you keep him.

    I think some people view QBs in the same way as they look at PP. In some peoples eyes, PP should never ever get beat. Somehow, he should shut down the other teams best WR and not let one completion happen. If he doesn’t, he is a prima donna who is over rated. But sometimes, the other teams best wr is #1 for a reason.

    QBs never should throw picks or make mistakes. But sometimes the defense gives them looks or sometimes defense make plays.

    One of Dalton’s picks happened when he saw the Chargers pass rusher covering Tyler Eifert. Mismatch. Dalton decided before snap to go there. Only problem was Ingram was up for the challenge and hung with Eifert and picked the ball. Should he have thrown it? No. But was there a good reason he thought Eifert was going to be open? yes. Ingram just made a play.

    He is a young talented QB who is learning along the way. To judge him over playoff loses and not give him credit for their wins isn’t fair.

  35. By ored on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    maybe we can start a clemson connection also,would’nt mind tajh if he dropped a ways to us,but for the time being i’m good with palmer,the steep learning curve is over and they just need to get comfortable together.last year was like a rebuild,next year should be awesome with injured players now healthy,a new free agency and draft.

  36. By Scott H on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Chris B –

    OK. The reason everyone said they needed one ( a QB ) was, well, because they did need one! I acknowledge that there were not a lot of great choices available at the time. But whatever side you want to take, they failed. Period. Contributing to the QB failure was the failure to improve the O-line during the same period. And they have to take a lot of blame for that, too. You can’t say there were no O-lineman available during that time. There were. But the organizational approach during their off-seasons seemed to be quantity over quality, with bargain basement specials as their preference.

    Why is talking about trading up an asinine argument? Considering the extent to which that happens every year at this point, I’d say your opinion on this is what is truly asinine. Do results vary? I’m sure they do. But draft day results vary no matter what.

    Speaking of asinine, I guess if all NFL teams subscribed to your way of thinking, no one would EVER draft a QB. Why? Because we should all use Matt Leinart as our example of how the wrong QB will set your franchise back 5 years. But we should ignore all of the instances where drafting the RIGHT QB put a team on the road to success, right? Yeah…that makes sense.

    And spare me your wisdom about hind-sight. I believed well in advance – as did many others – that Derek Anderson was going to be a dismal failure. Seeing that coming hardly required a crystal ball.

  37. By Coach K on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    There is a quarterback in the 2014 draft that is a perfect fit for B.A. and the Cardinals. His name is Blake Bortles. The question is, will Keim take a chance and trade up to get him and be willing to sacrifice several picks in order to get their franchise quarterback fro the next decade? Bortles is the only legitimate first round QB in this draft in my opinion. He just has something the others don’t. He reminds me so much of Big Ben it’s like de je vous. I’m not big on these gimmick offense quarterbacks like Carr and Manziel. I don’t see them making the transition to the pro game. Bortles ran in a pro system and can make all the throws and the pre-snap reads. Next year’s crop does not impress me except for perhaps Winston. So the question is, will the Cardinals take the bold move to move up and get the only franchise quarterback available for the next two years and take Blake Bortles #1 overall if Houston agrees to trade down. That’s assuming Houston would be willing to lose Bortles who the new coach covets.

  38. By Cactusjeff on Jan 7, 2014 | Reply

    Playoffs are managed much differently than the regular season. QBs run more. Teams are willing to risk health of QB to move on in the playoffs. Plus, great defenses get pressure on the QB without having to blitz, so the QB better be able to extend plays with their size or feet. Explains why Manning’s record is poor in the playoffs.

    So, with a QB like Manning, Palmer or Dalton the roster has to be filled with pro-bowlers to have success in the playoffs. They are not Elway, Farve, Big Ben, or Rodgers, winning playoff games with poor OLs and average weapons, they can’t do it.

    Denver’s roster could give Manning a successful run through the playoffs this year. Even Tebow, minus WesWelker, won a playoff game with Thomas and Decker!

  39. By John The Draft Guy on Jan 8, 2014 | Reply

    I just saw this article regarding the owner of the Bengals saying he wanted to pick Kaepernick over Dalton.

    What a great owner! No wonder why Palmer would rather retire than be a Bengal. Nothing like putting support behind your QB , coaches , and front office.

    It is amazing Dalton has lead them to 3 straight playoffs with an idiot like this running the organization.

  40. By Cards Season Ticket Holder on Jan 8, 2014 | Reply

    The QB answer is keep Carson Palmer for two years. Do not reach for a QB in the draft unless it is cheap to move up in the draft a couple spots for the one you want. But draft the QB you like this year to learn from a Pro like Palmer.
    The Cardinals are “Very Close to a NFC Championship and Superbowl Contender”, so we draft the Best Players Available in the draft an make adjustments with the free agency, (just like we did last year).
    Palmer will be more comfortable with the new offense and I hope “will cut down on interceptions!”
    Go Red Birdz

  41. By Cards Season Ticket Holder on Jan 8, 2014 | Reply

    Reference the Offensive Line.
    I think the strength of this coaching staff could turn “Probowl Offensive Guard” Richie Incognito into a good addition here.
    Incognito is from Glendale, Arizona. He played high school football here in Glendale. I think Incognito would appreciate a chance to win here at home. With family support, I believe he would play extra hard and keep his off-the-field-issue in control.
    That would seal our guard position on both sides with Cooper playing the opposite side.
    Go Red Birdz

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