Just as the world was being set a blaze by Cam Newton’s performance in his first ever NFL start, I couldn’t help but think about our version of a freak athletic quarterback Terrelle Pryor. Newton’s stat line was eye-popping for a seasoned vet let alone a rookie in his debut. Although emotions should be tempered a little bit since it was against the Cardinals less than solid secondary. But 400 yards is 400 yards, and the poise and command he showed were excellent. What does that mean for the Raiders? That means there is a decent amount of hope for the future once Terrelle Pryor gets his shot. The difference between Pryor and Newton? Let me know when you find that out.
Here’s their last college year stat lines :
Newton 66.1%, 2854 passing yards, 30 pass TD, 7 int, 1473 rush yards, 20 rush TD, 5.6 avg
Pryor 65%, 2772 passing yards, 27 pass TD, 11 int, 754 rush yards, 4 rush TD, 5.6 avg.
Newton doubled Pryor in rushing yards, but also doubled him in attempts, they matched in rushing average. Both are listed at 6’5”, 233-244 pounds. Can you tell the difference between the #1 overall pick and the guy taken in the 3rd round of a supplemental draft? Both have sketchy pasts, but Pryor has never been arrested or accused of the things Newton has. Both have quirky throwing motions that seem awkward when compared to Tom Brady, so what? They both have shown the arm strength that would put them in the upper echelon of quarterbacks currently in the NFL. Terrelle Pryor was clocked at anywhere from 4.3-4.4 in the 40, Newton around 4.5. At the end of this season the Raiders will have one quarterback under contract and it’s Terrelle Pryor.
While Jason Campbell has been extremely ‘serviceable’ in his tenure with the Raiders, unless he explodes this season, there might not be a starting job waiting for him if he were to re-sign. You can only imagine the thoughts running through Al Davis’ head while watching Cam Newton light up the scoreboard and, more importantly to Al, the press room. Al lives for moments when the press has swallow its words and speak positive about the organization. After the Monday night win against Denver, the Raiders twitter account posted a picture of media vans parked outside the Alameda facility. He’s setting himself up for a last hurrah. Terrelle Pryor could be Al’s last “told you so” moment.
During that Monday night game the Raiders were deep in the red zone when Campbell dropped back to pass, with no one open and it being 3rd down, he took off running up the middle for a collision at the 3 that barely got the 1st down. Immediately I thought “Pryor scores on that play”. Would Terrelle Pryor throw for 400 yards if inserted into the lineup? He wouldn’t have to and it’s not like Jason Campbell is doing that now. Campbell had 105 yards on 13 completions Monday night. Pryor couldn’t make those throws?
Now I’m not taking into account the pressure or things like that, but from a basic quarterback standpoint he can make them. Rex Ryan was quoted as saying the worst thing his defense has to deal with is a Vick-like quarterback that can move and get outside the pocket. It’s not that Pryor should start this season, but there is hope waiting in the wings. And this hope happens to run a 4.3. A weapon like Pryor in Hue Jackson’s hands could be a very dangerous thing to have come playoff time. Now is where you queue up your Jim Mora voice and say “Playoffs?….Playoffs?!”.