David Carr certainly stirred up some offseason controversy by leaving Ben Roethlisberger out of the top ten of his QB list he posted last week.
Carr recently appeared on NFL Network to defend his ranking. He offered a little more context to why Roethlisberger didn’t make the cut. In the article, he focused on his supporting cast. Here, he said #7’s play is declining.
“I don’t think that Ben is in his prime right now,” Carr said. “What he did [early in his career], he was a different level. He threw defensive linemen off of him, he made plays outside the Xs and Os. Hall of Fame player, no question, but he doesn’t do that as much anymore. That’s not his strength. The other guys that are on this list have more ability at this stage of his career.”
It’s true that Roethlisberger isn’t the “sandlot” quarterback anymore who can run around for days and shed linebackers with ease. But he fails to recognize how Ben’s game has evolved – only recently has most of the national media even caught up to that – and how successful he’s become in the pocket while occasionally still making that throwback play. That changing the way he played was necessary to prolong his career and he’s still doing it at a high level.
Carr then made some dubious comments about also leaving off Carson Wentz and Deshaun Watson off his list, saying he didn’t know if Wentz would start the year (he’s on track to). Carr ranked those three behind the likes of Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo.
At least Carr is focusing on Roethlisberger’s game in this discussion more than he did in his article where he directed all the focus on the talent around him. But he did get a little jab in that direction moments later.
“Not saying that Ben is a bad quarterback. Ben is a phenomenal quarterback. But i think they are on a phenomenal football team…if I had to pick, Ben wouldn’t be in the top ten.”