Ian Rapaport of the NFL Network has reported that Minnesota Vikings players have been informed that Shaun Hill will start this weekend.
This is naturally not an indictment of Sam Bradford in any way, but it reinforces the idea that NFL offenses are difficult to learn, especially quickly.
Despite the fact that the Cowbooys with Norv Turner were able to get Bernie Kosar ready to play in four days back in 1993, most examples we have of quarterbacks thrown into the fire are not good. Josh Freeman played the worst or second-worst game of his career playing for the Vikings eight days after he arrived on Monday Night Football, while Carson Palmer’s worst game since his rookie year came against Kansas City when playing for the Oakland Raiders, twelve days after he arrived.
Donovan McNabb reaffirmed on 1500 ESPN earlier today the idea that it should take a significant amount of time getting Bradford up to speed despite the fact that Bradford is one of the sharper quarterbacks in the NFL. He expected Bradford to sit several games early in the season.
Matthew Coller, also at 1500 ESPN, talked to Joe Berger about what happened with Palmer in Oakland, and Berger mentioned the fact that because quarterbacks are responsible for setting protections, a new system leaves passers uniquely vulnerable to blitzes when they don’t have the language to deal with what they see.
This may surprise head coach of the Tennessee Titans Mike Mularkey, who expected Bradford to start.
Stylistically, this won’t change Tennessee’s approach. Head coach Mike Mularkey doesn’t see much of a difference between the two quarterbacks as far as preparation goes.
That isn’t the same as saying they are equally talented, so much as the fact that defensively, they will have the same game plan and assignments for their players.
At this point, it does not matter what the Vikings spent to get who. While they very clearly expect that at some point Sam Bradford will start over Shaun Hill later on, the team has consistently argued that their decisions revolve around the best way to win. If Hill, with years of experience with Turner and a year in this specific offense under his belt, gives the Vikings a better chance to win than a quarterback who arrived a little more than a week ago, it seems they will start Hill.