Certainly, bringing in JaMarcus Russell is a low priority for every team around the league. But when you look back to his LSU Pro Day, everyone was awed by Russell’s physical skills. Now, though, they’re only shocked at his downward spiral.
Teams that need a backup quarterback have to inquire about Russell. Maybe that’s the Bills, or Vikings, it’s difficult to say. But there will be teams inquiring.
The first overall pick in an NFL Draft sometimes has as much as 10 years to prove that he can’t play. And it takes only one team to provide that second or third chance. I really would be shocked if no one takes that chance.
I can say that every NFL coach feels like he can be the one to get Russell on track. By doing so, they would boost their ego and bolster their resume.
I’ve seen Russell up-close at practice. While he is his own worst enemy in several ways, the Raiders also provided no structure for him. What he did in Oakland, he would never be able to do under coaches like Andy Reid, Tony Sparano or Bill Belichick. Still, though, those organizations shy away from this type of player.
Across the Bay, the 49ers have two former first overall draft picks who are average, at best. You could add Russell to make it three. 49ers coach Mike Singletary could provide the discipline that Russell desperately needs.
Just a few thoughts following Russell’s release.
— Brian Baldinger