Thursday, August 21, 2008

Steak's Cut on the QB Situation

The answer to the summer long debate about who should and who would be the starting quarterback for your Terrapin offense on August 30th, opening day, has finally been addressed. The answer is Senior Jordan Steffy.

Steffy and his 5 career starts and 14 overall games played will be lining up behind Preseason All-ACC center Edwin Williams against the Blue Hens of Delaware, with Chris Turner listed second on the depth chart and Josh Portis third.

But is this the right choice?

The answer in one word is no. In my opinion, Steffy should have been listed third on the depth chart with Chris Turner given the first opportunity at the starting job and Josh Portis in between.

Shouldn’t the guy who defeated two Top 10 teams in a season be given a fair opportunity to continue his success? An unrated squad led by Turner went on the road and put up 34 points on Rutgers, who continued to slide out of the rankings for the remainder of the season.

Is that not enough? How about a 42-35 shootout at home against #8 Boston College? Turner essentially went blow for blow with Heisman candidate and top rated quarterback in the country Matt Ryan and came out on top!

When given the opportunity at the beginning of the season at a Top 10 team in West Virginia, Jordan Steffy came up very small. Other than that, Steffy did not face much competition and the results were mediocre. The quarterback position is fortunate enough to be graced with one of the most exciting receivers in the country, Darrius Heyward-Bey and when you fail to get him the ball through out a game it frustrates the fan base constantly.

If you would like to argue that Steffy had a completion percentage of 67.3 versus Turner’s 63%, which shows consistency in a lot of people minds, then I will refute that by saying Jordan is a classic conservative and check-down quarterback who can manage a game. Similar to another quarterback in town a few years back in Baltimore who a little bit of success, Trent Dilfer.

I would be remiss, if I did not point out the fact that those Ravens had the best defense in the league, something of which the Terps don’t currently possess at this time and point.

So I say, why not live a little? Why not throw the deep ball? Why not utilize Mr. Heyward-Bey, a top 10 talent in the ACC hands down? Why not use Chris Turner, who the students and fan base fell in love with and who managed the Terps to some huge victories last season?

Turner’s 1:1 touchdown to interception ratio isn’t all that much to get excited about, but I must also point out that Turner’s longest touchdown pass of the season was 78 yards, almost 40 yards longer than Steffy's longest touchdown pass. Ok, so Turner is a little more erratic with his throws but from his games last year I think it also shows that he willing to take chances and utilize his options.

According to Coach Ralph Friedgen, none of the quarterbacks really separated themselves in both spring practices and summer camps. So I ask why you landed on Jordan Steffy as your starter.

Coach Friedgen also mentioned that Josh Portis will be used in specific situations. I am very pleased to hear this revelation about the quarterback situation. Portis’ skill set and mobility should not go untapped and hopefully we will be able to see what the Florida transfer can do when given the opportunity. You see this situation work out a lot of times in places like Florida, LSU, and Virginia Tech most recently.

Don’t get me wrong though, it is not as if I won’t root for Jordan Steffy when opening day kicks off, but in my opinion Chris Turner had earned the opportunity to try and continue where he left off last season.

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