Thursday what started as a misguided pipe dream became reality (the misguided part still applies). Vince Young officially signed with the Riders. It would appear that neither the pittance of a CFL salary nor our lousy Smarch weather could deter him. Young is here, Young is a Rider, Young will be competing for a QB spot in training camp.
Regular readers will know that I am about as impressed with this turn of events as Young appears to be in the above picture upon arriving in Regina.
I get the "What's the harm?" view that many of you have adopted. It's a low risk deal with no upfront money and a lot of incentives (i.e. portions of the contract I expect never to be triggered). We lose nothing by bringing him. If he sucks, we move on. If by some alignment of about 11 simultaneous miracles he is awesome then we look like geniuses. So I will concede, yes the risk is minimal, the harm is next to nonexistent... But I still don't like it.
Now I could dwell on all the reasons Young is unlikely to succeed or all the reasons that I oppose this union. But by now you are probably sick of hearing me rant about this. So instead I will take a different path and discuss why this signing is just the latest thing that should cause us a fair bit of concern with respect to our QB situation.
I won't get into the whole Durant thing but as a starting point let's assume that if you are doing to turf your franchise QB you had better be pretty confident in your ability to find the next one. Problem is, nothing this team has done in regards to QBs instills any degree of confidence. What we have seen under this regime is a string of sub-par recruits and a pile of 3rd string QBs jettisoned by other teams.
Under the Recruits category we had Jacob Huesman who was here for so little time in camp that I barely had time to learn his name. We also had BJ Coleman who lasted a bit longer but accomplished about as much. Mid season we added Vad Lee. I'm not even sure his stay consisted of as many weeks as him name has syllables. The most notable recruit was sadly Phillip Sims, and not because of his play but rather because he looked like he may have ate some of his fellow QB competitors. Four recruits all clearly not up to snuff.
Then we get into the QBs that came from other teams. Early on we picked up Bryant Moniz and GJ Kinne off the Stampeder scrap heap. Moniz cost us a few possessions before mercifully being cut. Kinne looked awful in his lone appearance but is still here. Mitch Gale came from a trade with Toronto. In a change of events he wasn't embarrassingly awful. He was decent but I'm pretty sure we saw his ceiling. Could you win the odd game with him? Sure. Is he a guy to pin a franchise on? No. People are high on Brandon Bridge who we salvaged after Montreal cut him but I have literally seen nothing that leads me to believe he is a legit contender for starter. I have no problem with him in camp but I honestly don't see him coming close to contending for starter. As I've said before, if he weren't Canadian, I'm not sure anyone would care about him. Jake Waters came in a trade from Hamilton. He apparently had the most potential (though I find the Dave Dickenson comparison a bit over-selling him). We will never know as his career consisted of a broken collar bone and retiring to accept a coaching job. Lastly, this season we added former Bomber QB Bryan Bennett. Jury is still out on him.
So in over a year of trying to find the next QB, we have a bunch or terrible recruits and as a result had to turn to a bunch of guys we added from other teams, one of which was mediocre one of which may have possibly had potential. If any of that gives you confidence in our ability to find the next franchise QB, I hope you have a prescription for whatever induces those illusions. Vince Young may be the best QB recruit we've had in a long time but that is a really sad thing.
I staunchly maintain that Kevin Glenn is far and away the best QB on our roster and I fully expect him to out-duel any of the schlubs Jones has assembled to compete with him. My hope is that our mini-camp unearths just one solid recruit at QB to change this sad narrative.