Is Aaron Rogers faced with the curse of the backup QB?

Since the dawn of football, there has been a quarterback need within the game.

Shortly after the game was founded it was picked up as a spectator sport; it was at this time that team started to recruit a second quarterback to fill in if the lead quarterback could not perform due to illness or injury. With that, the Backup quarterback was born.

Many star quarterbacks have fallen to backup quarterbacks over the years, and some gave birth to the next great in line. One backup stepped into the limelight to become a Legend.

No quarterback wants to think about losing his job to the backup, but many have to consider that they too will be replaced at some point by the backup. Many teams get quarterbacks to fill holes in their roster. Never knowing what they have on the bench till he needed due to a season ended injury. This is when the back gets to show off their skills, and many do so well at it that they land the starter job.

Let’s take a look at a few mentionable instances of this happening. One of the most mentionable instances of this comes from the 49’s where going from one hall of fame quarterback to another wasn’t even thought of in the early 90’s. This is precisely what happened though when Steve Young stepped in for an injured Joe Montana in the 1991 season. Joe had injured his elbow in the NFC Championship game the previous season; Young performed so well that the 49’s had decided to stick with Young even after Montana was healthy.

Sticking with the 49’s in 2012 they had another instance where the back up outperformed the starter and once again faced with a decision to make when starting QB Alex Smith went out with an injury Collin Kaepernick was the man sitting back up on the bench. Despite Smith’s 19-5-1 record starting under coach Jim Harbaugh, Collin Kaepernick had performed so well that season even taking the 49’s to the Super Bowl in 2012 that the 49’s stuck Collin Kaepernick as their starter for the five years. Alex Smith was traded the following season to the KC Chiefs.

Our next case of the backup QB blues also comes from another California team but not the 49’s this time. More like the San Diego Chargers, the Chargers had used a first round pick in 2004 to pick up Phillip Rivers, although they had Drew Brees manning the ship at the time. Brees would maintain the position for the next two years, but late in the 2005 season, Brees would injure his shoulder and Rivers stepped in. The Chargers chose not to re-sign Brees.

Brees moved on to the New Orleans Saints where he won them the Super Bowl title in 2009. He has also turned the Saints offense into one of the most potent offenses in the NFL with substantial passing numbers being put up since being with the organization. Rivers has taken the Chargers to the playoffs many times but has yet to win a title. Despite not having a title yet River’s remains a top passer and still leads this Chargers to this day.

The most memorable backup steal of a starting position was when Tom Brady stepped in for an injured Drew Bledsoe. Tom Brady was drafted out of Michigan in 2000 as the 99th overall pick. No one knew that this 99th pick was the stuff legends were made of but quickly found out. In 2001 Brady came into the after Jets injured Bledsoe and Brady showed out. Putting up amazing passing numbers for a rookie and even getting the Patriots a Super Bowl Title that year. Bledsoe would be traded to the Bills the following, while the Tom Brady would continue to make Pats fans happy for the next 16 years, breaking just about every NFL record along the way and bringing home the Super Bowl title a total of five times and still counting.

And the most recent example of this curse comes to us from Dallas Cowboys. When Tony Romo when Dak Prescott stepped in for Tony Romo after Romo injured his back in the Cowboys third preseason game. After having an amazing season at center, Dak Prescott was named starting QB for the Cowboys who must have been hard for Jerry Jones as we all know Romo was his golden boy and I’m sure he wanted to stay loyal to him.

But you have to go with the one that performs the best and gives your organization a chance to bring home the title. You did the right thing, Jones; it was time to move forward to greener pastures.

Now Green Bay may be faced with the same issue as all these teams have faced. When Green Bay’s leading man Aaron Rodgers went out back in at the beginning of the season with a broken collarbone. Green Bay was forced to turn to backup Brett Hundley a fifth-round draft in 2015. Hundley has seen much game with the Packers until now.

When Hundley steps up, people thought that was the end of the Packers season. But Hundley has surprised everyone, leading the Packers to a 7-6 record this season.

With stats like 63.9% pass completion, over 1500 yards passing and eight touchdowns in his first season, Hundley is very much poised to be the next leading man in Green Bay.

I think Aaron Rodgers sees this threat, which would explain his return this week against the Panthers, despite his collarbone not being 100% healed. Maybe he feels like Hundley is good enough to steal his job and is will to put himself at risk of farther injury to avoid losing the starting position we’ll just have to see what Green Bay decides at the end of the season and see how everything plays out. But still, keep your eyes on Hundley this kid is going somewhere to do big things one day.