I'll admit, I haven't put a ton of thought into this post, but I feel the topic is worth talking about. I've been thinking about it, and I foresee five legitimate possible free agent candidates that the Vikings could sign at QB (most likely) ahead of Webb and Ramsey in 2011. This is based on the assumption that T-Jax will look elsewhere for work since he's in a contract year and now has some serious competition in Webb. Again, these five QBs are POSSIBLE free agent candidates for next season. Some are in contract years, but others I foresee being eventually released and on the market within the next few weeks.
The five candidates are as follows:
Matt Hasselbeck is in a contract year, and if the Seahawks decide to stick with Charlie Whitehurst through the playoffs due to Hasselbeck's injury, Whitehurst could become Seattle's QB of the future. I would then assume MH will be looking to go elsewhere. Upside: I think he would fit great in the Vikings system, and he's smart. His recent struggles have centered around the lack of a run game to keep the Seahawks offense balanced. Downside: We could not call Hasselbeck our QB of the future. In fact, I would envision a Brett Favre situation in which he signs a 2-year contract, due to his age.
Chad Henne could get me in trouble here. He had every offensive weapon he needed in Miami to succeed (and hey, they did end up right around .500 for the year in a difficult division), but Chad failed pretty miserably. I like to think that just because a QB didn't fair so well one place, that it doesn't necessarily mean he'll face the same woes at his next stop. Henne has a hell of an arm and is young. Should the Vikings grab him from Miami, he would be the most likely of these five QBs to actually have Webb to compete with. Upside: I believe in 2nd chances, and I think Henne has the right tools where he could make significant improvement as Vikings quarterback. Downside: When he struggles, he struggles mightily. And my guess is he will either be a candidate for Most Improved Player of the Year, or we fans will be calling for his head by Week 5.
Kyle Orton went to my high school and is from my hometown, so I'm going with the homer pick here. Let's face it, Orton got McNabbed (more on him later...yes, McNabb, shut up...I have to bring him up). Don't get me wrong, Tebow deserved his shot and he played well, but Orton got benched and that's not a good sign for his future in Denver. KO may be the QB in the post that is at the best point in his career; prime age, he's been around the block, blah blah blah. Upside: The stats don't lie! KO can throw. Well. He's been to a Superbowl in Chicago (gasp!...let's sign him NOW!). His successes in Denver were obtained by throwing the ball to...Brandon Lloyd? Jabar Gaffney? I'll take it. Downside: Um...he got McNabbed. Or Grossman'd? I can't decide which I like better. Bottom line, there's always a risk taken in making the QB of you team's future someone who got benched for Tim Tebow just a few months prior.
Now let's get serious. Let's talk about what everyone else is talking about. I'll mention the last two in the same paragraph, the same breath. They're the most feasible I think, as well as the most controversial choices for 2011 Vikings QB. I'm talking about Kevin Kolb and Donovan McNabb. One is a pocket QB, the other is more (but becoming less and less) mobile. One has been around the block, the other has not (let's be clear that I'm not specifying who is who because, well, come on--you should know). One has been benched my Mike Shanahan for Rex Grossman, the other had the unfortunate luck of playing on the same team as Michael Vick. Untested vs. Around the Block. Young vs. Old. It's a tough call, but between the two, I think I'd rather have Kolb. There's too much obvious risk by making Donovan our QB, and come on guys, who wants to go the "old" route again? Who was seriously a fan of Gus Frerrotte, Brad Johnson, and Brett Favre (Year 2)? We fans just have to decide if we want to a)groom or b)trust our quarterback of 2011.