Why Is There A Shortage Of Black Quarterbacks In The NFL?

Why Is There A Shortage Of Black Quarterbacks In The NFL?

Does the NFL need to change their style of play?

The NFL is no stranger to controversy and this issue is not a new one.

But, what is a legit reason why the NFL today only has five black quarterbacks that start on a regular basis? Some would say that the talent is just not there. Others may say why are you bringing race into sports again? Well, sorry to bring up race in sports, but you must admit that this conversation is an interesting one to dissect and analyze.

The five black quarterbacks that start on a regular basis are Jameis Winston, Cam Newton, Russell Wilson, Dak Prescott and Tyrod Taylor.

Now, all of these quarterbacks are talented and can change the outcome of a game. If someone is an impact player, then should that person's race be brought up? I do not believe it should, if you can lead your team to a Super Bowl win. I do not think many will care if that quarterback is black or white. The issue is that many teams, historically, have not given black quarterbacks the opportunities to either start, play or given a spot on the roster.

Now, I know that there are have been successful black quarterbacks in the past.

For example, Michael Vick, Donovan McNabb, Randall Cunningham and Warren Moon are all considered to be the best of the best in terms of black quarterbacks. With these men being outstanding players, we can't forgot that having seen evidence of blacks being successful in the NFL, there has consistently been a shortage. I am not saying that football is a segregated sport because that is far from the truth.

Blacks are the majority athletes in Division I football. Why I think that the NFL seems to discriminate and not give blacks as much an opportunity at the quarterback position is because of the common style black quarterbacks play. I would even go as far to say that this style is common throughout college football today. That style is the duel-threat quarterback, one that can run and threw the ball efficiently.

This style is a mobile pocket passer.

An example is Michael Vick to the fullest. These type of quarterbacks relay both on their legs and their throwing arm. This style is seen throughout the best college football teams in the nation today. Jalen Hurts at Alabama, Kelly Bryant at Clemson and even Heisman hopeful Baker Mayfield at Oklahoma play this way.

The NFL is stuck in the era of pure pocket passers like Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger and Drew Brees. While it is the norm and almost required of quarterbacks at the college level to have the ability to runaway from trouble if need be. It has yet to truly transition to the professional level.

The reasoning behind the lack of black quarterbacks is because the majority of black quarterbacks play the mobile pocket passer. Cam Newton at Auburn was a running quarterback with a rocket arm. He had to transition from that type to a more traditional style and he has done it pretty well.

Unfortunately, that transition has hurt many potential players to transcend from just a college star to an NFL star. An example is Robert Griffin III. He won the NFL Rookie of the Year in 2012. He was a great quarterback who would outrun defenders and throw the ball down the field.

He was seen as the second coming of Michael Vick in his prime. But, injuries the following season hurt RG3 that derailed his career. This showed how mobile quarterbacks were not going to be able to survive in the NFL.

It is possible for black quarterbacks to change their styles, but what if they didn't have to? I think we would see the rise of great black quarterbacks like Deshaun Watson, come into the fold. The risk is too much though. A franchise quarterback should be able to be efficient for at least eight to ten years.

But, if you continuely get banged up from tackles then your style of play would be looked down upon. Also, another reason is because the NFL is made up of players in their 20s to their late 30s. Not everyone is able to keep up with the fast pace style of mobile pocket passers.

It would be foolish to not mention that sometimes race can play a part in a black quarterback not starting. That is a reality we have seen in the past and it will not go away soon. But, I think that ideal is few in numbers because it is a given that a coach, an owner would want a Tom Brady instead of a Kelly Bryant type player. Brady is in his late 30s and whether you love him or hate him.

You have to admit, the guy knows how to win consistently and stay healthy. I do not want people to continually play the race card for the shortage of black quarterbacks in the NFL. I believe we can see an increase if the style of play in the NFL changes. Until then, we just have to patient and enjoy football no matter who is at the helm, whether they be black or white.

Cover Image Credit: www.si.com

Popular Right Now

5 Ways To Make The Winter Olympics Way More Entertaining

A few ideas on how to elevate the 2022 Winter Olympics.

'Tis the season for the best of the best to gather for the 2018 Winter Olympic games and display the epitome of athletic ability.

Although they are undeniably impressive, the couch potato in me wonders how teenagers are winning gold metals while I’m on day two of sweatpants and shoving food in my face.

While I watch, I can’t help but think of a few ways the Olympics could be a bit more amusing and, even if it’s just me, a bit less of a harsh reality check.

1. Have the athletes exchange events.

Admittedly, this isn’t an original idea but it’s one of my favorites. What if, at the end of the Olympics, we had all the people that won gold in their event do a completely different event than they have been trained for?

It would certainly make me feel a bit better seeing a speed skater do a figure skating routine. Of course, it would have to be within reason because some of the events – jumping off a large hill and flying through the air, for example – probably wouldn’t be safe without the proper training first.

This idea may be better suited for the Summer Olympics, where we could watch the gymnasts try to doggy-paddle their way to victory.

2. Put blades on the hands of the figure skaters.

I had this thought yesterday while watching the women figure skating qualifiers. They do such an amazing job skating on their feet that I couldn’t help but think that it would

be pretty cool if we slapped some blades on their hands and watched them figure the rest out.

Sidenote: that gif is a French figure skater Surya Bonaly, who was able to successfully do backflips on the ice. Apparently, the move was so dangerous that they had to outlaw it from the Olympics in order to discourage athletes from attempting it.

3. Interview the team speed skaters about their teammates' butts.

While watching the women’s team speed skating, I couldn’t help but notice that every time one player was exchanged for another, the old player gave the new player a boost with a push to the butt.

I know it was probably immature to laugh at, but I laughed anyway. I just really want to have one of the reporters that interview the athletes after their event to ask the skaters about the quality of butt within their team.

I’m just curious…for a friend…

4. Put those flying squirrel suits on the ski jumpers.

This is very unsafe, but I think if we worked on it hard enough, we could figure out a way to make it safer. I know that they get great airtime just coming off the hill, but imagine

if we put one of those wingsuits on them and really watched them go.

5. Make everyone dress the way the curlers do.

This needs no explanation. If you have ever seen a curling team, you are familiar with their

Vogue-worthy fashion statements.

Compared to those horrendous fringed gloves that the US team wore for their walk in the opening ceremony, I think curling pants would have been a better choice.

There are so many ways to make the Olympics a more fun – and also, in hindsight, more dangerous – spectacle. But, in reality, the most captivating part of the Olympics is watching the dreams of people from many countries and age ranges fulfill a life-long dream, regardless of how nice their butts are.

Cover Image Credit: Kevin Pedraja

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Adam Gaudette Has Put Himself On The Hockey Map

The Northeastern Husky thrived on one of college hockey’s biggest stages.

Late round draft picks can be a tossup, but the Vancouver Canucks may have hit on their 2015 fifth round pick, forward Adam Gaudette.

Entering the draft that year, Gaudette was relatively unknown. He didn’t put up big numbers in the USHL, and as a Northeastern commit, Vancouver had to hold out hope that he would develop well enough in college to eventually contribute a little in the NHL. Nobody expected his development to come the far, though.

To the surprise of many, Gaudette has been consistently performing at a high level since he arrived at Northeastern. Gaudette currently leads the nation with 24 goals, rapidly approaching his total of 26 from the year prior. His 47 points overall this season ranks also places him at the top of the statistical leaderboard, where the closest player to him is his teammate Daryl Sikura with 41 points. His 16 multi-point games are also some of the tops in the NCAA this year, and he even became Northeastern’s all-time leader in power play goals with 31 across his years playing for the school. As an alternate captain for the Huskies, he also shows strong leadership skills.

With Northeastern competing in the annual Beanpot tournament, Gaudette finally got the recognition he deserves. The Beanpot is a tournament played in the NHL’s Boston Bruins’ arena in which the four major ice hockey schools in the Boston area compete. Beginning in the 1952-53 NCAA ice hockey season, the Beanpot has been a staple in Massachusetts, mostly dominated by both Boston College and Boston University, who have a combined 50 titles out of 66 that have been played. With Northeastern looking for just its fifth title win, Gaudette scored three goals in the final, completing his hat-trick with an empty net goal to secure a 5-2 win in the tournament. Guadette earned the Most Valuable Player trophy for his performance as Northeastern University won the Beanpot for the first time in 30 years.

Having a big stage only seemed to elevate his play, and with Northeastern in the middle of a successful season currently ranked inside the top 15 in the nation, they could make noise in the NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Championship. The Huskies have never won the Men’s Ice Hockey Championship, and Gaudette is looking to help bring further success to a Northeastern program that has only been to the Frozen Four once.

To add to his resume, Gaudette is also a current nominee in the first round of voting for 2018 Hobey Baker Memorial Award, which is the most prestigious award in college hockey, given to the play judged to be the top player in the nation. Former players who have won the award include Paul Kariya, Chris Drury, Jack Eichel and Johnny Gaudreau. An award win would put Gaudette’s credentials over the top as he nears a possible NHL job.

Regardless if he earns any additional hardware to the Beanpot, Adam Gaudette is certainly higher on the Canucks’ radar as he continues to produce, and he may earn an entry-level contract from them sooner rather than later.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Related Content

Facebook Comments