My growing frustration with Matt Hasselbeck has been no secret (at least to the 580 or so people who follow me on Twitter @NussCoug), but today's news that Charlie Whitehurst will be starting at QB for the Seattle Seahawks against the New York Giants leaves me with mixed emotions.â†µ
On the one hand, I'm excited to see what Whitehurst can do, as the old adage that the backup quarterback is the most popular player on a team certainly applies. Whitehurst is the great mystery, the unknown quantity that the front office thought so highly of that it gave up a high draft pick and committed millions of dollars. Will he be better than Hasselbeck? I'm excited to find out.
However, these are hardly ideal conditions. You generally hope for a soft landing when a guy is making his first NFL start; facing the Giants pass rush with a depleted offensive line is anything but that. The good news is that Whitehurst has a fair amount of mobility, even if he's not a "running" quarterback, and should be able to use that to his advantage -- or, to at least keep from being killed.â†µ
And that's the rub for me. I was legitimately worried that Hasselbeck would be a sitting duck back there and get hurt worse than he already is. The coaching staff might be able to do some different things with moving Whitehurst around on bootlegs and waggles to try and keep the Giants from simply teeing off. And given the fact that Whitehurst's body hasn't quite taken the pounding of Hasselbeck's, he should be able to withstand a few more hits.â†µ
This is a game the Seahawks are unlikely to win. Getting a glimpse of Whitehurst while keeping Hasselbeck in one piece is probably the best way to go.â†µ