August 24, 2011

The New Marriage Of Terrelle Pryor & The Oakland Raiders

Marriage is a very sacred partnership where two sides unite to spend their future together. Yet, getting a clear view into what is forthcoming between that bond is the scariest predicament of the union because that vision is ambiguous and blurry. People, situations, and life change over time, which can make any promising marriage go from sweet to sour quickly.

Terrelle Pryor will be hoping for a more refreshing flavor after his latest commitment left a bad taste in his mouth. The troubled quarterback was the poster child for Ohio State’s recent troubles involving their football program and bailed on the school over the summer to head into the NFL. After finally getting clearance by the league to enter the Supplemental Draft, the Oakland Raiders gave up their 2012 third round pick to select him to their franchise.

Although the six foot, six inch, 233 pound star is ready to escape his previous union that crashed and burned dreadfully towards the end of its run, this new marriage to the Raiders illustrates an interesting outlook between the two and brings up an enormous conundrum:

Is this the right move going forward for the quarterback and his new team?

Trying to find the prefect path for Pryor after the Ohio State debacle is like finding a golf ball in the tall weeds; no one clearly knows where to begin searching. Struggle is not a quality that this once highly-touted prospect understands to deal with.

He’s supremely gifted athletically (not many other quarterbacks in the world can run a 4.4 second 40-yard dash) and can make a play materialize out of nothing with either his arm or legs. Yet, he is a project at his position and hasn’t shown that he’s ready to take that next step of being NFL-ready. Pryor is much more in need of guidance from players above him (especially those who play quarterback) and would benefit greatly in the long run with the right mentors surround him.

In other words, he best resembles those adolescent males from the “Teen Mom” television shows who always complain they are ready to become a man, but are clearly too immature to handle all the pressures of being married and a father.

The Raiders appear to have faith that their new acquisition can break out of his juvenile mindset and fulfill that promise he was exuding when he got into Ohio State, but the franchise itself may not have all the necessities the quarterback needs to support its half of the relationship for the long run.

They are nothing like the current great teams such as the Patriots, Colts, or Packers. The Raiders are a team that’s continuing to rebuild and searching for a vision for their future. They have a rookie head coach in Hue Jackson and a roster full of prospects in the 20’s. The only well-known veterans that can command great respect of the franchise are Richard Seymour and Michael Bennett.

The lack of veteran leadership for Pryor is even more evident when looking at the stable of QBs the Raiders have to teach their new addition.

While other rookie signal callers have some of the best guides in the league to educate them on what it takes to be an elite quarterback (Ryan Mallet has Tom Brady, Jake Locker has Matt Hasselback, and Christian Ponder has Donovan McNabb), Pryor has Jason Campbell, Kyle Boller, and Trent Edwards to study under. All three came into the NFL with the bar set high (Boller and Campbell are former first round picks and Edwards was a third round pick), but have yet to establish themselves as a worthy quarterback for any franchise as all three have been cast off by other teams in their young careers.

Although they can be helpful in grooming the 22-year-old phenom on the intricacies of being an NFL quarterback, it’s highly doubtful they can prepare him for success in the league given their own track record in the pros.

With the major work Pryor will need in order to head in the direction of being a successful NFL quarterback and the current state of the Raiders, the new relationship formed with the franchise may ultimately end similar to his last relationship with Ohio State, possibly even worse.

Already the public has seen what happens when the Raiders get their hands on supremely gifted quarterback who needs to be monitored and guided heavily to be successful. JaMarcus Russell was a big risk, big reward number one pick for Oakland back in 2007, but imploded into a bust when he couldn’t maintain his weight, remained settled on his skills with no drive to improve, and never appeared to have his head on straight.

While Pryor has more potential and is a better athlete than Russell, the organization appeared to stand by and idly watched their most prized possession destroy himself rather than grooming and pushing him into the right direction. This could be an ominous sign of the direction Pryor could head with the Raiders if both sides aren’t supportive and helpful of each other’s progression, both individually and collectively.

Assistance and encouragement will be the keys in determining the success of the new union in Oakland, as both Pryor and the Raiders will need each other if this is going to be a long lasting relationship down the road.

For better or for worse...

By Norcal JW with No comments


  • Popular
  • Categories
  • Archives