Originally written on The Jaggernaut  |  Last updated 10/30/14
  Naming Chad Henne the starting quarterback over Blaine Gabbert based on performance is a huge mistake. Sure Henne played superb against the Houston Texans Sunday and had the Jacksonville Jaguars in position to win, but that was due to an injury -- not because he outperformed Gabber.  Henne came in and gave the offense a spark, no doubt about it. Would Gabbert have thrown for 350 yards and four touchdowns against the Texans? Not likely – but that doesn’t mean Henne should be named the starter. I have a couple reasons why Head Coach Mike Mularkey made a bad decision. What has Henne done that Gabbert hasn’t? There is no doubt about that that Gabbert has had a less than stellar season. He has gotten better compared to a horrendous rookie season, but that progression hasn’t been at the rate the coaches and fans expected. Nonetheless, has Henne really outplayed him in his limited playing time? Several quarterbacks in the history of the NFL have had one-hit wonders of games and seasons that they have parlayed into a starting job elsewhere (ala Matt Cassel) and major pay days (ala David Garrard.) And I think Henne is no different. I know what you are going to say: “But look at the throws he made against the Texans defense!” Yes he made some good throws Sunday. But Gabbert has made those same throws – particularly that same skinny post that receiver Justin Blackmon used to torch the defense Sunday. The difference is the receivers have caught the ball for Henne. The Jaguars had the second most drops in the NFL heading into Week 11. Much more can go into this simple debate but let us move on. This move delays Gabbert’s final evaluation Making the move at quarterback when, for all intents and purposes, the season is essentially over is usually the right thing to do. But it isn’t when the guy you are benching whom you called your franchise quarterback. Is it a motivational ploy by Mularkey to light a fire under his ass? Maybe. The argument can be made both ways. But when you say you are committed to a young quarterback, you need to let him take his licks. These first few seasons will determine whether Gabbert is going to be a David Carr, and be physically and mentally destroyed by the NFL game, or if he will develop into a franchise caliber signal caller. After all, I would rather he take his licks and flop out of the league than bench him and bring him back in as the starter in a few weeks. You do not draft a quarterback with a top 10 selection and then bench him year two. You obviously saw something in him that warranted the pick, and you must ride it out and find out as soon as possible if you are right or wrong. Inconsistency be dammed Both quarterbacks have proven to be wildly inconsistent. One minute they look like world beaters and the next they look like JV backups. The difference here is that Henne is a veteran quarterback that has plenty of starts under his belt. If he isn’t consistent by now, they he likely never will be. Stranger things have happened though. And Gabbert’s inconsistencies, on the stat sheet at least, are not always his own faults. Again, the team has the second most drops in the NFL and made a handful yesterday that may well have changed the game. For a young signal caller, especially one that proves to be inconsistent, he needs players around him to make the plays to calm his nerves and give him a sense of confidence. The Jaguars do not have that. The change can signal the white flag Gabbert is less than two full seasons into his starting career and while he has shown progression, albeit minimal, by benching him you are effectively throwing up the white flag for the rest of the team – this is especially profound when the team is 1-9. Athletes in general are very finicky and are easily influenced. When your quarterback, who is their leader, is benched and he is still healthy – it sends a message to the rest of the team that the coaches don’t believe in the decision they originally made in the first place. It still remains to be seen how injured that right forearm is, but the move can cast a shadow of doubt over the entire locker room. The endgame is not pretty The endgame for the entire situation is not going to be good because if Henne stinks it up, which I think he will, then the coach looks like a moron for making the switch after just one good game. Conversely, if the switch pans out the general manager looks like a fool for drafting the bum quarterback in the first place and wasting a top draft choice. Either way, the endgame is not going to be pretty in Jacksonville and a few more rebuilding years are on the horizon.  
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Thunder announce Kevin Durant to miss rest of season

Jeremy Maclin says he still believes in Chip Kelly

Mike Weber on Sabres fans cheering loss: 'A whole new low'

Michael Sam: 'I'm not the only gay person in the NFL'

More international NFL games could be on the horizon

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Tyler Ulis on West Virginia: We wanted to crush their spirit

Former No. 1 pick Brady Aiken undergoes Tommy John surgery

Ortiz: 'Nobody in MLB history' tested for PEDs more than me

Sam Dekker scores career high after Aaron Rodgers' challenge

Brey Day: Notre Dame’s coach makes first Elite Eight after a vintage performance

Ronda Rousey on having kids: 'I'm an ovarian goldmine'

Be careful how loudly you cheer on Mo'ne Davis' olive branch

Twins to offer $19 Bloody Mary with pizza slice garnish

Ranking the NBA's hottest coaching seats

The beginning of the end for Notre Dame

An identity in flux: Harden and the collective consciousness

LeBron James makes Fortune’s list of 50 greatest world leaders

Five under-the-radar National League MVP candidates

Five bizarre NFL offseason moves that don't add up

Texas to Rick Barnes: Change your staff or you will be fired

First 'National Fantasy Football Convention' to star Tony Romo

Teams that don't deserve to win Connor McDavid Sweepstakes

How a basketball-themed art exhibit changed perceptions

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Be careful how loudly you cheer on Mo'ne Davis' olive branch

James Harden and the collective consciousness

Hottest coaching seats in NBA

Under-the-radar NL MVP candidates

Notre Dame’s coach makes first Elite Eight

The last Expo standing

Five under-the-radar AL MVP candidates

Michigan sent recruit's GF a letter

MLB teams that could disappoint

25 years ago, the best Sweet 16 of all time was pure madness

The 2015 bad quarterback carousel

17 facts to know before the Sweet 16

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.