Hey everybody, my name is Daniel Shiferaw, and I'm one of the new guys here at Hogs Haven. I've been writing about the Redskins since last season over at SBNation DC, as well as a personal blog of mine along with two buddies of mine at The Swinging Gate DC. I'm pretty pleased to be joining forces with HH, and look forward to trying to give as unique a take as I can on the mammoth that is the Washington Redskins.
So with that, let's get started with someone who's been the star of the current labor dispute since the draft ended.
As has been noted here and all around the blogosphere, John Beck is a heck of a talker. He knows how to conduct himself in a media interiew, and that should be to his credit. Because of his current media tour, he's drummed up a good amount of support within portions of the fanbase and may have even talked his way into convincing some media members that he could indeed be the guy at QB for the Redskins.
This entire saga is really one of the most amusing yet intriguing developments for the Redskins in recent years. But taking a step back and viewing it for what it is, which is simply a third string quarterback attempting to talk his way into the starting job, wouldn't be fun, would it?
One thing's for sure, whenever the lockout ends, Beck will have built up so much buzz around the league that he'll emerge as one of the league's most buzzworthy players once football is back in business. Here's three reasons why:
The length of the lockout helped create this monster that is Beck-mania: If the lockout had been lifted over a month ago, there is very little doubt that we would not be talking about Beck. It would have been more likely that a veteran starter would have come in and been anointed the presumed starting QB spot and we'd be done with it. But obviously that isn't the case, and we're left to speculate (for much longer than we would like) as to who is going to be the guy at QB. Whether or not you believe that Beck is going to be the savior for this franchise, what is very clear is that the longer this labor dispute goes on, the easier it's going to be for him to win the job. Without a free agent veteran coming in to challenge him with enough time to learn the offense, there will be no one to beat him out (sans Rex Grossman being re-signed). Longer the lockout = more Beck buzz = more likely it is he wins the job.
This might be the highest profile QB situation in all the NFL right now: Think about it. Go through each QB situation throughout the league and think about which one is getting more buzz right now than the Beck story. You'd be hard pressed to find one. The only stories that rival this one is the Carson Palmer situation in Cincinnati, and the Donovan McNabb situation, which is obviously related to this one and is also a story revolving around this team. Although there are other teams in the league with unsettled QB situations, there's no other story like this one.
Redskins fans want their team to find their version of Kurt Warner: For all the free agent busts, the draft misses, the failed trades over the years, how ironic would it be for the Redskins to strike gold by simply giving up practice squad corner Doug Dutch? I wouldn't be surprised if there's a portion of the fanbase who is simply hoping the Redskins finally found a capable QB who fell into their lap. It also wouldn't be surprising if that same hope is blinding a portion of the fanbase as to what Beck's actual abilities are.
All of this, in addition to the way he's been speaking lately, has really built up some positive momentum for Beck within Redskins Nation (and the media for that matter), and will continue to do so until Mike Shanahan makes a move (or specifically, is allowed to make a move) to change Beck's status as the starter.
So hat's off to John Beck, perhaps the only man who will not only come out of this entire labor situation unscathed, but perhaps even strengthened.