Tuesday, September 01, 2009

On Stanton's Injury And Telling Numbers About Porcello and Halladay

Is there anybody in this town who doesn’t like Drew Stanton? Or who doesn’t respect him? That’s the not the issue.
There is a bottom line with Stanton, however, that can’t be denied. He is injury-prone, and it is the biggest single reason we may never find out just what he is capable of doing as an NFL quarterback, at least while in a Lions’ uniform.
There are several aspects upon which quarterbacks judge. Arm strength, speed and mobility, accuracy, feel for the game and durability. Stanton’s arm strength is adequate and he is more mobile than most NFL quarterbacks. His accuracy isn’t bad. Where he has been downgraded by the Lions and NFL scouts is his feel for the game. He doesn’t sit in the pocket patiently and go through the progression of his reads. He tends to see open space and take off. While this leads for positive yardage, it also makes him more vulnerable to injury. That’s especially a concern given his past, both with the Lions and MSU, when Stanton has fought injuries.
This is his third pro season, but he is behind the curve because of injuries. Every time he starts to make progress, he is out for an extended period. What happen this week with a knee injury that required surgery happened his rookie season in 2008. Last season, it was a thumb injury that knocked him out.
Stanton can’t the last the preseason. How is he going to last the regular season, especially as a starter, or even a reliable backup.
Now is that harsh? Yes. Is it fair? No. Not really to Stanton. You can’t help but feel for the kid. The NFL is a harsh world, though. It’s judgments are stark. He has one more year on his contract after this season. Unless he returns in dramatic fashion late this season (the Lions didn’t put him on injured reserve) - which is unlikely scenario - it’s difficult to see his status changing much from this season to entering next.

Random Thoughts

- Fearless prediction: Jarrod Washburn will pitch well in some key games down the stretch and be named as the third starter for the postseason.

- Since the trade deadline, Roy Halladay is 2-4 with a 4.71 ERA. He has allowed 54 hits in 42 innings.
Since the trade deadline, Rick Porcello is 2-1 with a 3.16 ERA and has allowed 25 hits in 31 innings. The Tigers are 4-2 in the games he has started.
The Tigers didn’t even consider trading Porcello to Toronto for Halladay at the trade deadline. To this point, anyway, it’s clearly been the right decision.

- Kirk Cousins is solid. I think he will do fine as Michigan State’s starting QB. I wonder about Keith Nichol. How can he not beat out Cousins for the position? To me, this is shocking. Phil Steele had Nichol as the seventh-ranked quarterback coming of high school his senior year, Cousins was 179th. I use Steele as an example. Other ratings were similar. They aren’t even close in terms of pure ability. And it’s not like MSU didn’t recruit anybody for the position this year. Freshman Andrew Maxwell has a chance to be a very good player. When Nichol gets a chance to play - and he will - he’d better make the most of it.

My column in Tuesday's Oakland Press about the Rich Rodriguez situation: http://tinyurl.com/n8kl7c



Blogger Barry said...

Pat, every team would want Halladay because of the talent of variety of pitches he has and with a heater that can reach 99 m.p.h. Halladay is on a team that is counting down the season and he too is probably counting down the season and he could be being conservative with arm. I agree you do not give up a 20 year rookie pitcher that is holding his own. He should get better.

10:52 PM 
Blogger dan said...

ur wrong about washburn. he's not very good. start Nate; or someone else.

11:46 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Halladay is a great pitcher. No doubt about it. Just pointing out what has happened since the trade deadline.

11:44 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Robertson did reasonably in his first start, but I'd still take my chances with Washburn over him. He's been a better pitcher for a longer period of time. Robertson has struggled lately.

11:45 AM 
Anonymous Hollis Keys said...

Book, I have been able to go to both home preseason games this year and it completely astounds me that with the ineptitude of last season- players and ESPECIALLY COACHING wise that Stanton COULD NOT EVEN GET ON THE FIELD last year! It is one more sad testimony to the lack of professional evaluation of players of head coach Rod Marinelli and his staff. Thank God that they are gone and WELCOME to the Schwartz!

12:54 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Hollis Keys,
Stanton did play a little bit, and he was out for an extended period with a thumb injury that put him behind Orlovsky. But you can make a case he should have played instead of Culpepper.

2:16 PM 

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