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Is Case Keenum the Victor Oladipo of the NFL?

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jteach10
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Is Case Keenum the Victor Oladipo of the NFL? 

Post#1 » by jteach10 » Wed Jun 6, 2018 3:25 am

Sometimes NFL players suck. In fact, lots of NFL players suck and don’t really contribute to their team in any positive way. It’s fairly obvious which players suck. It’s the ones who stay buried on the depth chart or who, when by some miracle they get to play, the other team constantly take advantage of. Let’s not forget though, that sometimes coaches suck, or even organizations as a whole suck at putting players in a position to succeed.

Take for instance Victor Oladipo, the Indiana Pacers all star shooting guard, who spent the first four years of his career underachieving in Orlando and Oklahoma City. When traded to the Pacers, he all of a sudden exploded onto the scene as one of the best two-way players in the entire NBA. He’s a former second overall pick of the draft, but after not living up to that teams wrote him off as a bust because of his performance. What organizations wrongly assumed was that it was an Oladipo problem and not a situation problem. Who else might be like that?

John Elway and the Broncos shocked many when they began free agency with the signing of Case Keenum, a career backup, who last season transformed into one of the top performers at quarterback in the NFL. What Elway seems to be banking on is that the first six years of Keenum’s career were not an indictment on Keenum, but rather an indictment on the coaches and the organizations that he has played for. Let’s walk through three arguments that could lead to Elway looking like he found an absolute steal.


1. Keenum’s 2017 Total Quaterback Rating ranked second in the NFL

QBR is a stat developed by ESPN in 2011 aimed at giving an all encompassing look at a quarterback’s overall contribution to his team winning. Case Keenum’s 69.7 rating finished second in the league behind only Carson Wentz, who was the MVP front runner before tearing his ACL. Keenum finished ahead of MVP winner Tom Brady and other legends such as Drew Brees, Russell Wilson, and Ben Roethlisberger.

If you take a look at the list of players who have finished a season with a score as high as Keenum’s you will find many MVPs and Hall of Famers. At the very worst you will find franchise quarterbacks who have led their respective teams for a decade plus. The only two names who don’t fit that criteria are Dak Prescott (who looks on track to be Dallas’s QB for the next decade) and Matt Schaub. Go ahead and laugh, but people forget Schaub had a very good run for a few years, albeit short lived. Schaub actually had three top 6 QBR finishes between 2008 and 2011. So the evidence appears to be on Keenum’s side with this one. Heck, Broncos fans would be thrilled to see even a run like Schaub had compared to what they have experienced the last few seasons.

2. What if Keenum was a rookie?

Most of the scoffers that believe Keenum’s play last year was a fluke point to the fact that he’s been in the NFL for six years and if he was any good, he would have certainly shown it before now. Remember, Keenum entered the league in the midst of the Texans biggest run of success in franchise history. Schaub was coming off of his previously mentioned third top 6 QBR finish, and the Texans went 12-4 in Keenum’s first year, so there was no need to shake up the QB position. In 2013, the Texans fell off of a cliff and went 2-14. Keenum got eight starts as Schaub’s play rapidly declined; Keenum went 0-8. While that is as bad as it can get, it was in the middle of a dysfunctional season in which coach Gary Kubiak was hospitalized after suffering a mini-stroke during a game. The Texans were almost completely devoid of talent on the offensive side of the ball that year.

Keenum spent the next three seasons playing under coach Jeff Fisher, who is almost universally considered a terrible coach in NFL circles. Look no further than the fact that Fisher had both Case Keenum and Super Bowl Champion Nick Foles on his roster and couldn’t wait to get rid of both.

Let’s just pretend Keenum’s season in Minnesota last year was his rookie year. How would his team and the league react if a first year quarterback went 11-3, finished second in QBR and led his team to the NFC Championship Game? He would be anointed a star! For some reason, despite Keenum proving he can excel in the right situation, he has not been treated as if he can replicate his success. The Vikings decided to move on anyway and sign Kirk Cousins. Detractors may also look to that as another indictment on Keenum, but the Vikings were in a unique situation where they were a loaded roster that somehow still had cap space, and the best QB to hit free agency in nearly a decade wanted to come to their team. I can’t blame them because Cousins has a longer track record of success and Minnesota needed a sure thing, but at the same time, I can’t write off Keenum because of that either. Getting looked over once again is only going to produce a bigger chip on Keenum’s shoulder, something Broncos fans should be very excited about!

3. Keenum was a historically productive college QB

Case Keenum is the all-time passing yards leader in college football history! College football does produce some system quartebacks; Keenum’s school (Houston) produced Heisman winner, but NFL bust Andre Ware. Keenum was lumped into that ideology largely because he went to the same school. He also was considered a short quarterback at 6’1. However, the NFL has changed in recent years and we are starting to see more short guys have success at the position.

At some point, productivity matters. NFL teams often make the mistake of looking at the tools of a player and ignoring the production or lack thereof, believing that they could coax productivity out of the tools. I believe they should trust the numbers more because players that are productive usually are productive because they are good, not merely because of their system.

Time will only tell, but to me it looks like Keenum has a strong case of continuing his solid play from last season. He has proven he can win with a good roster around him, so it’s the Broncos’ job to put a good roster around him.
FutureIsGreen
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Re: Is Case Keenum the Victor Oladipo of the NFL? 

Post#2 » by FutureIsGreen » Fri Jun 15, 2018 8:59 pm

Although this thread tends to be a ghost town, I appreciate your effort here. that's a great comparison.

Statistically Keenum is identical to the career stats Brees had with the Chargers before leaving to sign with the Saints.

If Keenum ends up like Brees, We are all set.
FutureIsGreen
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Re: Is Case Keenum the Victor Oladipo of the NFL? 

Post#3 » by FutureIsGreen » Fri Jun 15, 2018 9:01 pm

https://www.fantasypros.com/nfl/stats/drew-brees-case-keenum.php

Thats just last year, and it you look back at the first four years of each one's career, its creepy similar.

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