The NFL has recently put numerous rules in place to protect the quarterback.  While many people moan and groan over these regulations (mostly defensive players) it is the right thing to do.  Why you ask!  I'll put it to you like this.  Would you rather see Jay Cutler or Jason Campbell play against the 49ers Monday night?  How about Byron Leftwich or Ben Roethlisberger against Baltimore this weekend?  Perhaps you'd like to see rookie Nick Foles play instead of Michael Vick.  Okay bad example, plenty of Eagles fans probably would at this point.

Here's the deal boys and girls.  The commissioner and his people set up these rules so we can have our marque Monday Night match ups.  There aren't that many great quarterbacks in the NFL to begin with so I understand why the league wants to keep their stars healthy.

By the way it's not just the QB's.  There are now rules saying that you can't hit a defenseless receiver or launch your body and/or head at a player to make a tackle.   So it isn't all about the quarterback.  The league wants to protect all their players which is why they are constantly trying to improve the safety of the game from every aspect including equipment, rules and proper training staff and facilities.


Listen, I hate the ticky tack penalties as much as you do and the referees get plenty of calls wrong.  Personally I think late and illegal hits should be reviewed because I've seen defensive players get penalized for leading with their head even though they weren't even close.  So I get that part.  But the penalties sometimes act as a deterrent to ensure players are aware that they cannot continue to make some of the hits they are accustomed to.  It's a difficult task but down the road these current rules will help to improve the safety and  stability for the future of the league.

The facts are that players get injured and have to miss time.  Sometimes this happens to the starting quarterback and when it does it usually means a season of doom.  The Bears were playing great last season at (7-3) until Cutler got hurt for the year. Chicago ended up missing the playoffs and winning only one lousy game the rest of the season.

How about Peyton Manning.  Geez!  The Colts hadn't missed the playoffs in over decade until Peyton missed all of the 2011 season.  It goes to show you that the quarterback position is the most important on the field in that regard.  Everything changes when the back up comes in.  The cadence sounds different, the delivery and location of the passes are altered.  It's not as easy as taking a 3 step drop and firing a slant pass over the middle.  It takes practice and repetition to get the timing down and be used to the QB's style.

This is why it's very important to give the back up quarterback plenty of reps in practice because the starter will go out at some point.  It's not a matter of if, but when.  That back up needs to be ready to go at the drop of a hat.  So for any coach that may happen to read this article, please give your back up QB plenty of reps in practice because you never know when a Tom Brady may go down or when you'll have to rely on T.J. Yates to carry you through the playoffs.

For more on this topic and other NFL talk, tune into The Route 4 Sports Podcast tonight 11/15/12, from 6 - 8 pm EST and join the football conversation. Here's the link:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/thesportschroniclesradionetwork/2012/11/15/route-4-sports-podcast