By Jim Moore
When we talk about the Seahawks’ backup quarterback situation on 710 ESPN Seattle, we’re usually mentioning Tyler Thigpen as the primary candidate or maybe even Matt Leinart.
But officially or unofficially at this point, Josh Portis is the second-string quarterback after signing a two-year contract to return to the team last week.
ESPN’s John Clayton said he’d be OK with Portis as the backup entering the season, but it didn’t sound like a huge endorsement based on the tone of The Professor’s voice.
The Seahawks don’t need the distractions that would come with Tim Tebow. (AP)
OK, as in OK with Portis taking over on an extremely limited basis. Personally I have no idea if Portis, the former third-stringer here, has grown enough as a quarterback to earn the spot. From what little we’ve seen of him in preseason action, he looks to have the tools to step in on a temporary basis.
The Seahawks might have all kinds of faith in him, very little faith or something in between. I’m guessing it’s somewhere in between, which leads you to believe that they will sign Thigpen or another veteran and take a rookie in the NFL draft, which is now less than three weeks away.
If you’re not going to have a competition for the starting spot, might as well have a spirited one for the backup among Portis, another veteran and a rookie.
Or there could be yet another option. A controversial option. Danny O’Neil mentioned it on the show yesterday. He likes the thought of bringing in Tim Tebow.
The Professor, as you know, likes Tebow as a person but can’t stand him as a player. When Danny presented the thought to Clayton, I wish I could’ve seen John’s face.
“I don’t hate the idea of him coming here,” O’Neil said.
“He can’t play quarterback,” Clayton argued. “He can’t throw the football.”
O’Neil countered by saying that you’d run a college-style offense if Tebow were forced to play in Russell Wilson’s absence. You could keep the read-option stuff and streamline the offense to use shorter throws to take advantage of Tebow’s strengths.
There are rumors that the Seahawks might actually be interested in taking a look at Tebow if the Jets cut him, which Clayton thinks will happen soon.
For sports-talk radio purposes, it would be a terrific move. The guy’s a bona fide lightning rod.
But I’m with Clayton on this one.
“Tebow-mania isn’t worth it,” The Professor said, and he’s right. Tebow could be a decent backup quarterback, but the circus that comes with him causes too much racket and not enough upside.
If the Seahawks were a so-so team, I’d entertain the thought of Tebow on the roster. But they’re not; they’re Super Bowl contenders. Do you need the possible distraction of constant Tebow hoopla?