U of O’s Joey Harrington an NFL QB bust: I am not surprised

By now it is no secret- former Oregon Duck QB Joey Harrington is despised by Detroit Lions fans as a stiff. He has great receivers, an adequate offensive line, but seems to have trouble completing passes and mounting sustained drives.

Hate to say it but as someone who watched Joey for four years during his U of O days, I am not surprised.

True he was a star QB in college, but IMHO he got by on a great arm, some overwhelming offensive support, and a series of opponents not blessed with a great secondary.

But something bothered me about Joey even back then. His release was quick but his feet were slow and his decision making powers were not all that much faster than his feet.

In college, you can get by on a great arm, a fast release, and fleet receivers.

When the Detroit Lions drafted him third overall, I wonder if I somehow missed something about Joey that the Lions brain trust picked up on;. I mean, they get paid to evaluate talent. I only watch it.

But I have to say I was right.

In the pros – where offensive schemes and defensive counterschemes are equally deft and intricate, QB excellence demands a quick mind, and if you don’t have that quick, decision-making mind, fast feet to cover your ass.

Sorry to say this because Joey seems to be a cool guy. a native Portlander who plays jazz piano, gives of his time to worthy causes, and heck, might even be a Democrat, or at least not a Republican.

But when it comes to football, I never thought Joey had an intuitive rapid QB mind or fleet feet. He’s probably good enough to be a backup QB in the NFL but he lacks the necessary skills to be a winning starting quarterback in the league.

1 Comment so far

  1. Harring-bone (unregistered) on October 15th, 2005 @ 6:25 pm

    C’mon, this is no surprise. I’m glad that the MSM and blog world is finally getting around to seeing right through this guy. Yes he’s a nice guy, well rounded. But the cult of hype built up around him during his senior year of college and first year in the pros would have been difficult for even John Elway to live up to !!

    Most of us who have seen Mr. Harrington from the earliest days at Central Catholic and such, have seen him as not any sort of NFL record-winner but just as you say — a solid backup, tier 2 team player. He will never be in the NFL Hall of Fame — at least two orders of magnitude (if not three) lower in the talent and rankings than greats such as Elway or Joe Montana.

    I’m a Beaver so some may think I’m a bit biased, but as soon as I saw the (quite literally) larger than life photo of Joey Harrington painted for many months on the outside of a downtown Portland building, I knew the hype was WAAAAAY out of proportion to the reality here.

    The fact that Eugene boosters and officials hallucinated themselves into thinking that Harrington was/is the next Roger Staubach is appalling to us who have known better from 10+ years ago !!

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