2.5: Rich Gannon on JaMarcus Russell and the Raiders
Member of the 2004 season -- training camp. They get rid of Tim Brown. Then I think six weeks into the season they got rid of Jerry Rice and I I think that's a mistake. To wait until training camp to realize that with north sort of it may be Tim Brown Jerry Rice -- in the future that that should have been determined. Well and you know -- were very early in the offseason prior to free agency the draft as it was the -- ever made I think there's there's been some mistakes have been made since them. -- support the football team together and as I look at the football team I always ask. For the leaders on the football team and I don't know that there's enough form I think -- the big reasons why this team has struggled certainly the last six years. Well it did doesn't have to be the quarterback and you like to have a leader in every position old meeting room so one guy can kind of be the leader the -- But the leader of the football team on game day and whether the face of the franchise does does the leadership have to come from the quarterback position in Europe in your opinion -- Greg you don't answer this absolutely. I know you feel that your heart as well I think it's really important heat the heat it's that if the guys -- the hardest working guy in the building the smartest guy in the building it's really going to be hard for your team to have success I think when you look at the playoffs this year. And now -- -- look at look at the Super Bowl the teams that are represented and talk about Drew Brees and Peyton Manning to the unquestionable leaders of this football team did the CEOs. Well both of these operations great decision makers. But the thing that really jumps out -- they're tough they're competitive. They put a great deal. Of effort into their preparation I think that's really important as I look at jamarcus I worry about exactly that's seen him he's been in the league three years now. -- you you'll look for. As an example where he's he's making progress I just don't see and I think that. Obviously that guy has to be a leader and he has to be a consistent productive player in your system -- to be successful. But let me ask you specifically. Where he has fallen back this year I think they're the 2009 season can be summarized in a caption it. The regression of JaMarcus Russell the fact that he took several steps back to just brought this whole franchise back. But you would they are you broadcast of the game and Kevin Harlan. The final game of the 2008 season the Raiders beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Tampa and jamarcus played well that game -- since -- to back a few times he outplayed. Jeff Garcia in that game and he did finish that season strong -- that was his first full year as a starting quarterback the last two games were good the last six games were good. But then this year he just started up for -- he never got in a rhythm specific -- We don't want aboard the audience too much with mechanics here but what what did you notice about jamarcus why was he not is good this year as he was at the end of a wait. Well I really think -- goes back to you know. The offseason I think the offseason program is so important it's not okay to commend the mini camp. The 2.5 thirty pounds overweight I think he got to commend you gotta be in great shape but you have to show the your teammates that your committed to doing this thing and I think that there. The problem is in a nutshell I think he's lost the confidence and the trust of the coaching staff. I think he's lost some of the confidence and trust in the players locker room and I think that's up it's going to be very important cutting vital. Whether or not he can win back the trust of his teammates and the coaching staff. This offseason and it starts it starts right now he's got to commit himself. Doing all the little thing at this things it takes to being successful. And if it starts with you know being in shape work it out studying film doing all the little things that that you have to do at this level to ought to be a great quarterback and I. I know you have great respect for Paul Hackett who's the Raiders quarterback coach and and you know Paul's a great teacher the position. But I watching this big time I think I think the American public has kind of lost. Grips with reality about how hard it is to play the quarterback position in the National Football League and we seeing Joe Flacco had some success Lester of the championship game back in the playoffs this year. Matt Ryan likewise Sanchez struggled a New York initially but he didn't get it together at the end so now we all think that you know these guys come off college campuses immediately applaud the men their Pro Bowl Super Bowl winning quarterbacks and that just does not. Happened you are a great example of that you brought in the league before the Raiders before he went to Kansas City you had to struggle to find your niche in the league of people living wanna make their quarterback. I've explained awash who have never played quarterback how difficult it is not you have to train your mind. To do this overtime and sometimes it takes guys 567 years Ford all the clicked into their mind. It it doesn't I always tell people it's hard to make a first down and this doesn't throw away games and and be productive I I think does it is it is a process that quarterbacks go through some it it happens earlier. A summit takes a while but I think it's important to. But to be a cat it's possible and got it really wants to work at a that's so that he can't coats and to a player he's got to be wanna be great. I think when you think about some of the great quarterbacks in the game today I had chance that the visit with Joe Montana this morning. You know talk -- with. Jim Kelly today and always Torre but all these great quarterbacks meet the guys are playing this weekend in the game and it Drew Brees and Peyton Manning these guys. Greg they work get it they study film. They come in early they stay late it's important to whom they have answers -- nowhere to go to football. They don't take sacks they see out front throws a great decision makers they don't make a lot of mistakes and that's as if I was gonna visit with jamarcus. The first thing I'd say it was a jamarcus RUT are you gonna buy in are you -- gonna wanna do the work that it takes to to not be good. But to be great. That's really why try to reach out to the organization you know during the seasons is saying it was anyway I can help this guy I don't wanna be as Colts I don't wanna be a general manager. I have about what you -- to keep me busy -- I care about the organization I care about the Raiders. And I think its storied franchise I'm concerned about. The last you know five or six years and and how they've really struck and are concerned about the quarterback and his development. I really think it's a critical juncture for him he's had three years have been very shaky and the team is really they they need him to play well. You know and that's the point -- -- is going to draft a guy number one overall a year has to be a certain degree of patience to to watch -- I mean what would you advise the organization right now because I hear fans all the time -- They got to dump that guy is never going to be anything and I am I response is well well well they've already pay this guy. A lot of money it would be. I get it if you are gonna draft -- number one -- and give up bottom two or three late years later what's the point drafted him number one so. How do you think they work him back in they bring in a veteran quarterback to mentored him well how would you advise the Raiders to -- -- JaMarcus Russell from this point forward rich. -- I wish it was easy is that we all had the answers I think it's really got to start jamarcus -- whether this guy has got a really wanna buy and it and and really do the work it's necessary but but the thing -- scouts and structural things that need to get cleaned up I mean it is but work is. Is inconsistent. You know as a guy that really locks in on his primary receiver doesn't read the entire field. You know his accuracy has not been very good I think he's got to use his legs more I think he's very athletic player that's got the ability to get out he had to really extend plays. And make some plays of his legs. And not only that happens it's gotta be willing to. It he'll be a better decision makers that comes with two of the study and and an -- not only. Understanding defense has an understanding how defense or Chinese schematic they get after an attack yet and been a master of your domain understanding. The protection schemes and concepts in the passing game what everybody -- that huddles doing and that's something that from talk and the coaches and the people the building that that he is not that. He doesn't have a total grasp of yet and when you go out there. And and you try to play that position and you don't have a thorough understanding what everybody's doing both sides of football. Bad things happen. There's no question who's the most challenging an important position all of America's sport that's why. Two of the very best they're gonna play in the Super Bowl on Sunday. A lot has been talked about with Peyton Manning and I wanna get your thoughts on Drew Brees has to me. All you're you're taller player than Drew Brees I don't see a lot of similarities in your careers first of all he's tired a little quicker than you. But we're watching him play and the system is is several they throw a little deeper than you did with the Raiders but. Obviously Sean Payton was is entree into the NFL was being Jon Gruden and bill Callahan when they were together. In Philadelphia and it is guess somewhat of a -- a -- pro progression read it. A look for -- for the quarterback of the sayings like you had with the Raiders Q do you see a little similarities and in and you end in -- quarterback of the New Orleans Saints now. Well first of all love both these quarterbacks are really doing and I love everything about -- -- but with Drew Brees that I think they're striking similarities when you think about Drew Brees. And Sean Payton and their relationship and had my relationship with Jon Gruden. Other on the same page -- actually Sean Payton worked with Jon Gruden Philadelphia's in the system that they have the same passion and energy. Same I think aggressive style terms the play calling it took -- a lot of different looks formation only with motions and shifts in personnel groups. But this guy Drew Brees is special he's a tough guy he's very competitive smart instinctive. He he I think he has as much freedom and flexibility at the line of scrimmage. But really any quarterback hit it in the game they change protections they changed place -- he's. I just love watched him play very strong uses entire body when he throws the football throes of some awkward body positions phenomenal competitor. I'm getting overpaid net because she giving you are almost a coach on the field with the Raiders as well as evidenced remember sitting on the bus bus next to you a job and you guys had your own separate. Language and you're just so symbiotic late. Intertwined together but the question I have is. That badly they checked with may system is used in the NFL quite a bit reporter messed it up on the line the players check with the quarterback that he can change things but. Not to the same degree that Peyton Manning does it where he almost runs the entire offense right there at the line based on what he sees from the defense and coverages of the defense of fronts. It's Peyton has been so successful rich why don't more quarterbacks. Do it that way where they. It never huddle and it got to this run the whole thing at the line of scrimmage could other quarterbacks had to do they have the mental ability to do what Peyton Manning does with the colts' offense. Also do we see similar to a certain extent but keep in mind Peyton Manning has been -- the same offensive coordinator Tom Moore in the same offensive line coach Howard but for his entire twelve seasons this system. As continue to revolve and -- Peyton has played well it has been productive and efficient they've given him more. They given more freedom of flexibility to do that because they trust him. And sometimes have talked some more about to give and three plays that maybe a strong said run a quick three step throw it deep play action shot and he gets up there he has everything at his fingertips. And that's the beauty of and I think when. When you watch this -- practice have been to Friday practices throughout the NFL this season is the best Friday practice I saw all year was weeks forward to the Titans and the and the Colts. One ball hit the ground or practice on Friday is a back shoulder throw Austin Collie Peyton Manning was very upset. He made the comment -- also hit the -- practice on Friday adding that's the type of the attention to detail discipline that they have in the practices he is like a -- on the field. And he's a special special player. That's the way it was a -- practices early in the day the ball never hit the ground at practice or they started in the ground as and I said. -- -- this offense there was Rich Gannon I'd lastly let's euphoria which ago we do thank you for your time here. What do you like in the football game Colts Saints on Sunday who's your pick. You -- -- I think it's gonna be high scoring game I'm not real confident either defense that neither defense -- top fifteen my sense is is that they'll be the Colts in a close game I don't think either quarterback will make many mistakes. Greg I think the last quarterback to really have the ball in his hands probably gonna win this -- my senses but Colts will win this one by a field goal parents are thank. So much for your time we take -- much of it today go enjoy Miami Florida and good catching up with the rich thank you so much. Thanks great.