The Fallacy Of A Backup QB

November 2nd, 2015
Over-inflated value of backup QBs.

Overinflated value of backup QBs.

Joe gets the backlash for Joe’s insistence that Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht, if the offer arises, steal a draft pick from a team for backup quarterback Mike Glennon.

Bucs fans scream that a quality backup is needed. Joe has always contended that if your starting quarterback goes down, then you are screwed anyway.

Joe just cannot understand how folks value a player that, in the best-case scenario, never sees the field. That’s just crazy.

Well, leave it to well-respected former NFL linebackers coach, NFL player personnel director and former Bucs front office bagel fetcher Pat Kirwan to blow the lid off the con that is a valuable backup quarterback.

On a podcast on his fantastic new site,, Kirwan notes that this season, backup quarterbacks forced to start are a robust 5-23. As Kirwan stated, if you have to rely on your backup quarterback, “You have no chance.”

So if Licht is, for reasons unknown, passing on a second-day draft pick for Mike Glennon, then that would be irresponsible given how the Bucs — especially on defense — need players terribly to actually take the field — not hold clipboards.

81 Responses to “The Fallacy Of A Backup QB”

  1. scott fitzgerald Says:

    Glennon is gone. Just don’t see him staying. I can guarantee Licht is wheeling and dealing right now. I love the guy and want to see him succeed as a starter somewhere. (Jets or Browns)

  2. JollyBucsFan Says:

    I would take a 4th for Glennon, he gives us zero value and that wont change

  3. RCH Says:

    He should be calling the Jets.

  4. CreamsicleBananaHammock Says:

    A second day draft pick?

    Nowadays that means a second rounder. Joe’s, I pray to freaking dog that you don’t honestly believe we can get a second round pick for Mike Glennon.

  5. DB55 Says:

    Lol, talk about beating a dead horse. A 2nd pick would be very hard to pass up that’s assuming a team would give up a 2nd rounder, doubtful.

    Then you look at our back griffin who was recently hurt, how idk, has never won a game, heck I’m not sure if he’s ever played an NFL.

    Sometimes peace of mind is worth the cost.

  6. D-Rome Says:

    Bucs fans scream that a quality backup is needed

    Certainly not *this* Bucs fan! Glennon has value and he’s a better QB than a few starters out there right now. The Bucs are very likely going to miss the playoffs so any arm will do if Jameis were to get injured.

  7. bucrightoff Says:

    We’ve gotten our asses kicked by backup QBs last two years (Austin Davis, Derek Anderson twice, Brian Hoyer, Ryan Mallett). Apparently we’re exactly what a backup QB needs to win.

  8. Buccfan37 Says:

    This does look like prime time to be shopping Glennon. Will somebody bite at the asking price? What is the asking price? At least a 2nd or he stays right here, I think he is worth that much, maybe more. I guess everyone thinks Winston is injury proof and so tough he could play with an injury that most QB’s would be sidelined with. He has that limp that troubles him at times, saw some against the Falcons. The 3rd string QB might be adequate to fill in. It might happen that MG is dealt, this is the closest I’ve felt to that possibility.

  9. Howard Cosell Says:

    I guess the MGM has been annihilated.
    Like when the Polish horse-mounted cavalry charged the new “machine gun” invention at the beginning of WWI.

    I was a 3rd degree mason in the MGM. Sad to see the end of an era, but Winston has proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is “all that” and then some. Thus the MGM has no purpose. No raison d’ etre as it were.

  10. DB55 Says:

    MGM will live 4eva

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    It all depends on the price….both ways…..If we can get a 3rd….pull the trigger….a high 4th maybe….but any less & we are better off keeping him until next year’s draft then deal him.
    We have our QB….the only teams that need quality backups are the ones who don’t have quality starters…..unless you have the luxury of grooming one like NE, GB & others.

  12. Brent Says:

    Is mg signed thru 2016? Do you guys know the bust rate of a 4th rd draft pick? It used to be like 70%. Translation almost useless pick vs #2 rated backup qb in nfl.. If he’s gone by end of year then trade him. If he’s ours thru 16 why not keep him for awhile. This 4-5 rd pick isn’t what it’s being made out to be. Kwon is a rarity. Look at our last few 4-5 rd picks not one difference maker. Just backups. I still want a shot to win if jw goes down.

  13. Bucs Fan Since '76 Says:

    No team is going to offer us anything of value for MG unless it is to be its starter right now. Which NFL teams are in need of a pure drop back starter right now? And which of those teams has a starter who is not as good as MG? Dallas maybe, but they’ve waited too long. Who else?

  14. salish_seamonster Says:

    The reason for the poor record with backup starts is that most backup QBs aren’t any good, which is just as good an argument for keeping a good one when you have one.

    In the Bucs’ case though, this team would be better off trading Glennon, since they’re not going anywhere.

  15. mike Says:

    A good back up is important if you are a good team… like if pitt or dallas had a good back up, it might keep them in the hunt untill the starter returns. We are not a good team, so we don’t really need a good back up. The reason we have kept Glennon, is because no one has offered much of anything for him so you might as well keep him. Why give him up for like a 6th rd draft pick? No reason too, especially since he is much cheaper than a tavaress jackson, mike vick, matt castle type. A vet with 6 yrs in the league or more would make twice as much as glennon.

  16. mike Says:

    The fallacy of anyone wanting Mike Glennon, especially in the middle of the year. Everyone on this site…” if we can get a 3rd”, “if we can get a 4th” I’d do it…. um, no kidding. You can get a 6th and draft another punt returner, but you would have to pay another back up, so why?

  17. Bo Says:

    I wouldn’t do it for less than a 3rd, but that’s unlikely. Bucs need DB’s and pass rushers in a bad way, but it’s hard to find quality starters after the 3rd. Could use a lower pick to move up though.

  18. Brent Says:

    I’m just saying a 5 th rd pick usually doesn’t even make the team much less impact the game. Your not paying mg much anyway. I’d take a 3rd rd pick. After that it gets dicey

  19. Marlow1976 Says:

    Keep Glennon! I bet the Cowboys wish they had a decent back-up.

  20. WalkdaPlank Says:

    ‘As Kirwan stated, if you have to rely on your backup quarterback, “You have no chance.”’

    I would be fine if we traded Glennon for 4th or a 3rd. However, he has proven he can come off the bench and win games. Is he a quality starter? No. Is he a qualoty backup that gives you a *chance*? Yes.

    More than once has a backup QB taken over a team to win playoff games and even Super Bowls.

    Kirwan is wrong on this one.

  21. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    MG8 is pretty tall….maybe we put him on defense and he can bat some balls down…..can anyone remember the last time we did that?

    The teams interested would be teams that have an aging starter…..if there is no interest then perhaps we can resign him….he probably wants to have an opportunity to start so that is unlikely.

    He will be worth less to other teams later….at least now he has 1 1/2 years on his rookie contract and could be groomed to start in 16 or 17.

  22. GhostofSchiano Says:

    At this rate trade for a serviceable CB, WR or a DT, DE

  23. Buccfan37 Says:

    So the league teams are moving to having just a single QB on the roster.

  24. BucFan20 Says:

    Have we traded or brought in anything serviceable yet? That is all Lovie keeps doing on defense and it has gotten us what??

  25. JMN Says:

    @scott fitzgerald

    Not razzing on you at all but your last sentence gave me a good laugh this afternoon that was much needed.

    “I love the guy and want to see him succeed as a starter somewhere. (Jets or Browns)”

    I can’t even think of a QB that has been successful for either of those teams in the past 20 years.

  26. Tom Edrington Says:

    Backup’s just a backup until you need one….!

  27. Tom Edrington Says:

    Dick Vermeil:

    “We will rally around Kurt Warner….”

  28. Another J Says:

    it’s better to have a good back up, and not need it, versus needing a good back up, and not having one!

  29. scott fitzgerald Says:

    @JMN Glennon could be that guy they are missing….. LOL

  30. GhostofSchiano Says:

    I bet the Cowboys would offer quite a bit for a QB right now. Cassell and wheden both suck.

  31. Buc1987 Says:

    “Joe has always contended that if your starting quarterback goes down, then you are screwed anyway.”

    Joe…when Cutler went down for the Bears. Were they screwed when McCown took the field?

    When Jim Kelly went down for the Bills back in the day and Frank Reich came in were they screwed?

    When Jay Schroeder went down for the Skins back in the day and Doug Williams had to come in were they screwed?

    When Joe Montana went down for the 49ers and Steve Young had to come in were they screwed?

    When Phil Simms went down for the Giants and Jeff Hostetler had to come in were they screwed?

    Trent Dilfer backed up Tony Banks to start off 2000, but took over halfway through the season and rode Ray Lewis to victory in Super Bowl XXXV.

    Do I really need to keep going anymore?

  32. Buccfan37 Says:

    87… no, no, no, no, no and no. So we keep MG.

  33. Warren Says:

    Buc 1987 valid points if we were a contender as those teams and situations were. I really like Glennon and want to see him succeed somewhere and think he can. Which means we can get some good value for him from plenty of contenders who do need a go to guy if their starter goes down in the playoffs, or someone who is one QB away from relevance or having a chance at the playoffs this year. Licht is in a great position to play hardball and get some nice picks out of any trade. We will turn to a vet on the back end of his career to spell Winston as needed in future seasons when we have a chance at contending.

    To back up Joe’s point, we’re not good and keeping Glennon doesn’t make us better in case Winston goes down. Possibility of adding key pieces in the draft as we continue to rebuild is way more important. If we get our D right in the offseason we could maybe be a solid playoff team next year.

  34. GhostofSchiano Says:

    Expect a trade to the JETS for either Copeland (Currently OLB but will switch to DE) or Milner (CB). I will check back in 24 hours and accept all of Joe’s and everyone else’s praise and admiration.

  35. Warren Says:

    If Winston looked shaky I wouldn’t hold the above opinion however. Thank God he is looking like a world beater so far and seems to be our long term answer.

  36. OneLove Says:

    Agree with you 100% Joe! GREAT ARTICLE!

  37. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Those are great points. However, first of all I don’t think Glennon is as good as Steve Young, Doug Williams, Kurt Warner, etc. I could be wrong, but I’ve never seen it. We don’t have the defense that Trent Dilfer had (Captain Obvious on that one). We don’t have the players around for a guy like Glennon to be successful in my opinion. Can Glennon make clutch plays like Winston with the game on the line? I don’t think so. Can Glennon make that little flip to Doug Martin on third and 5 with a lineman hanging on him? Don’t see it happening. Can Glennon make that third down throw to Evans in overtime? Doubtful. We aren’t a playoff team with Winston, so we damn sure aren’t a playoff team with Glennon. Besides, he’s not going to re-sign with us when his contract is up. So why not try to get something for him? This year is for Jameis to grow. You may not like it or want to believe it, but it is absolutely 100% the truth. If he’s out, it’s a year wasted and we might as well get a better draft pick. The organization will never say that, but I will. Player for player trades are pretty rare in the NFL, but I would love to see us trade Glennon for another WR. A WR can contribute right away, whereas most other positions cannot. Winston needs weapons, and he doesn’t have many right now. Jackson is going to be out a while, and even when he comes back, the more weapons the better. People forget we don’t even have a legit #3 WR.

  38. Buccfan37 Says:

    “We’re (they’re) so rich, it’s known we push out capable starters right and left because hey it’s only money and we got plenty.” Imagined Glazer Buc revolving door take.

  39. JAB83 Says:

    So no one has mentioned that I can tell….

    How about a package deal including MG and two O line men for a #2 and unproven corner… Or something along those lines… Maybe even through in one of these D Line men… Like 3 players for a high draft pick and a scout team corner…. Make MG the center piece for the team taking him but provide players that will play right away… Because anyone getting MG is certainly looking towards the next few years to develops him…. HE CERTAINLY IS WORTH THAT TYPE OF INVESTMENT!!!!

  40. Buc1987 Says:

    Warren…as far NFL Network is concerned the Bucs are “still in the hunt” for the playoffs in the NFC with a 3-4 record. Do you and I see a playoff team in the Bucs? Well I certainly don’t seeing how I’m on the Fire Lovie Wagon now, BUT you never know. Stranger things have happened in the NFL. Like a few years back when the 7-9 Seahawks made it to the playoffs.

    If were still technically in the hunt, regardless of what we see on the field. I see no reason to not keep Mikey around. The kid’s a pretty smart cookie himself as well as JW. I’m sure he’s learned the playbook like the back of his hand by now, yes the same hand that’s holding the clipboard.

  41. Buc1987 Says:

    Buc1987 Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Yer funny Joe!

  42. Pick6 Says:

    the one rationale for not pulling the trigger now is that teams may be likely to give up more once they have a full season of shaky QB play in their heads, an offseason to get Glennon integrated, and time to confirm that no rookie QB offers the heady upside that winston and mariota did last year. if winston were to go down, we know what we are – a bad team that is better off drifting to the top of the draft than the fringes of the playoff race. even if glennon nets us a meaningless win or two, he probably hurts us (draft & waiver position) more than helps us by playing better than the rookie QB3

  43. Buc1987 Says:

    Well since I’m out here in twilight zone moderation and you guys can’t read what I typed for some reason. I was defending my stance on why they still can’t let Glennon go. I hope this one goes through. The basic gist of my post was, as long as the Bucs are 3 and 4 they technically ARE still in the hunt for the playoffs. So I’d rather keep Mike right where he’s at for now.

  44. Buccfan37 Says:

    In moderation, is that like percolating?

  45. Buc1987 Says:

    Joe there is simply NO reason to keep moderating what I’m typing. So I’ll try for a THIRD time. Since the 3-4 Bucs are still in contention for a playoff run. I’d rather Mike stay right where he is.

  46. Buc1987 Says:

    Buccfan37 …Dude I had to type out my reponse like 3 times and on the third I just made it extremely shorter and really didn’t get to make my actual point while everyone was still in here.

    LOL percolating…yes in Joe’s world.

  47. bucrightoff Says:

    Glennon won’t net more than a 5th round pick. The Bucs actions have shown they don’t want him and he’s likely to get cut or traded for nothing this offseason, so while teams like the Jets and Texans may be desperate, they aren’t stupid either. Glennon likely can’t help them for 2 more weeks and by that point both their seasons could be cooked anyways. The time to trade Glennon was this offseason, maybe you get a 4th then. Now if he gets dealt it’s likely for what Cassel got which is a 6th. Should have gotten more for him but so be it.

  48. Tiny Tim Says:

    Wow buc1987 your views have changed since July. The points you made about Doug Williams, Phil Simms, Dilfer etc. I made back in July. You were not trying to hear that then. Thank you for waking up on this.

  49. dabucs Says:

    On another note, the bucs will be in red Sunday

  50. Buc1987 Says:

    Tiny Tim …actually no as I’m still contending that this team will only win 5 games this season as I was back then. Like I said in the “waiting in moderation” as long as the team is technicaly still in the hunt for the playoffs at 3-4 which they, are then I see a need to keep Glennon. Even though I don’t see them making the playoffs at all this season.

  51. dabucs Says:

    I’m over the white unis

  52. orlbucfan Says:

    Hey Joe (yeah, an oldie goldie rock song), you can go to hell in a handbasket! Mike Glennon has NEVER had a fair chance since he was drafted!! He is part of the same group the SB Seattle QB came from–same college, year behind R. Wilson. He has been a victim of the musical chairs admin Bucs: constant HC firings, GM fired, you name it. He is a good QB. And what exactly are we supposed to do if so-called “America’s QB” Winston goes down? You think the refs love us and will protect Winston? I sure haven’t seen it so far! The only reason Mike Glennon is still here is our OC. Lovie would have dumped him cos Lovie didn’t draft him. Whoo-Whee.

  53. Buc1987 Says:

    Grrrr I can’t even respond to you Tiny Tim. I keep getting waiting in moderation and I can’t find the filtered word.

  54. Buc1987 Says:

    One more try and then I give up.

    Tiny Tim …actually no as I’m still contending that this team will only win 5 games this season as I was back then. Like I said in the “waiting in moderation” as long as the team is technically still in the chase for the playoffs at 3-4 which they, are then I see a need to keep Glennon. Even though I don’t see them making the playoffs at all this season.

  55. Buc1987 Says:

    One more try and then I give up.

    TT…Tiny Tim …actually no as I’m still contending that this team will only win 5 games this season as I was back then. Like I said in the “waiting in moderation” as long as the team is technically still in the chase for the playoffs at 3-4 which they, are then I see a need to keep Glennon. Even though I don’t see them making the playoffs at all this season.

  56. Buc1987 Says:

    Hurray Joe awoke from his much needed nap from all that traveling…

  57. Tiny Tim Says:

    Yes, but you wanted to trade him in the offseason and I did not understand why. None of us really knew/know how the season will turn out so keeping Glennon is smart. The bucs are trying to build a winning culture and if keeping GLennon can assure we could still go 7-9 or 8-8 if something happened to Winston would be big for the development of the culture. That is better than being 0 for whatever like Dallas is without Romo. That is never good. Welcome to my side

  58. Buccfan37 Says:

    The bad words are those positive about keeping Glennon.

  59. Sapp, STFU Says:

    Maybe the Cowboys will trade us Glennon for their DC

  60. JAB83 Says:

    LOL… Some people deserve to have their freedom of speach revoked… I would start with Trolls and Fans of Depression on this site…They are easy to spot

    Both have big egos and want pats on the ball sack for every negative point that they can cling to so that they can feel important… Both like to drag others down by over stating negative opinions and acting like anything to the contraie is ludicris… Finally, both feed off one another causing division and strict in the “looker room for the Fans of Inspiration.”

    If we can fire….. Or replace these types of cancers on our team we would be so much better off…. Ain’t no HOFers in this current group…

    If anything I VOTE FOR JAB83 to voted into JBF annual “FAN HOF”….

    We could start a FAN Haul of shame too Joe…. If you want??? What do you think Sir’s???

    Can I be selected for the JBF’s HOF….

    Joe knows best…. Moderate away Sir Joes a lot… Moderate them away….

    Regards, HOF bound JAB83

  61. JAB83 Says:

    *strife …. Division and strife….

  62. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    Unfortunately there just doesn’t seem to be a market for Glennon. Everyone wants a QB like JW, not a guy who isn’t going to take your team anywhere. Was there a big market for Hoyer, Sanchez, or Cassel? Glennon is basically the equivalent of those guys and teams know he just isn’t the answer as a starter. They’re not going to give up much of anything for him. Teams will either wait for him to be released or trade a worthless pick like a 6th rounder.

  63. Buc1987 Says:

    Jab83…everything you just stated is what drives Joe’s site. It’s been going on since I found JBF and I’m pretty sure it’s not going to ever stop. Perhaps PR would be a better place for you if you like rah rah Go Bucs posters all day long. That stuff just won’t ever fly on JBF. You won’t be the first poster to bounce over to that other over-rated garbage of a site.

    Are you coming to the game this Sunday? If so I won’t be hard to find I’ll be the one screaming the loudest for our team to win.

  64. JAB83 Says:

    I am the Fan equivalent of, The Pride of Tampa Americas QB Famous Jamies win some Winston, on this site….

    Come on Joe… Put me in The Hall….

  65. Buc1987 Says:

    Jab83…and for the record The Buc Realist is literally Joe’s favorite poster on this site. Go figure.

  66. JAB83 Says:

    LOL… Egos and negativity… While cute as a kid they are annoying as adults… This is the crux of the eternal problem with Fan of Depression, Trolls and Fans of Inspiration…

    So my question to Joe is… Are you gonna let people clam they found your site, not that you created a long time ago and its purpose has been and always will be to service Trolls and Fans of Desperation as if they are pimping you like a Saturday night she male on Nebraska Ave????

    Just curious…. LOL… Loser fans always will be… Guess some things will never change will they!!!! Oh well… Can’t save them all….

  67. JAB83 Says:

    Second thought..
    A hall of Shame would fill up to fast…

  68. Buc1987 Says:

    DB55….whenever you get in here. I’m officially not entertaining these silly ninnies anymore. I tried to prove a point but they simply can’t understand or get it through their heads. The Buc Realist who has been here since Joe founded the site and is probably the most negative fan on the site, is Joe’s favorite poster. Joe’s already stated that a few times in the past.

    You were right ignore these people for the rest of the way. Eventually they go away when reality sets in. I’ve seen it many times already so I’m pretty sure it will happen again in due time. Just skip right over them.

  69. OneLove Says:


    Yup, you can SKIP OVER DEEZ NUTS! LOL

  70. BucMania Says:

    Teams not having a solid backup QB is foolish and I have to imagine the good teams don’t overlook this. Why have a slug as a backup that you know you would lose vs a guy that has experience and can win some games if your starter goes down.? I believe teams are missing the boat if they don’t have a solid backup capable of winning games. Why have your season go down the tubes with an injury to one position?

  71. Anthony Says:

    I think the pats and rams would argue it differently

  72. BucMania Says:

    Besides who would really give us something worthy for Glennon? I think the perception we can get something big for Glennon is just wishful thinking.

  73. DB55 Says:


    Tools the whole lot of them. McClown n Mariota fans I bet. Hey one of them even wants GMC to smack me, lol, we ALL he too damn nice for that. I’m always eager to catch a good whooping just haven’t found anyone to do it but hey maybe a JBF poster can do it, lmao.

  74. Kchapple Says:

    Glennon Sucks!

  75. godzilla13 Says:

    There are a couple of teams who need a QB, there just does not seem to be much interest in Mike Glennon? Not sure where the disconnect lies because obviously Buccaneer fans have a much better belief in Glennon’s talent and potential than other GM’s do. We would be lucky to get a 5th for him. Teams like Houston and New York have an immediate need however when a team like Dallas goes after Matt Cassel over Mike Glennon, that should send a message as to his worth. I hope Licht will make a trade for a CB or and a WR. Everyone knows that bringing in a good player at either of those positions can help us immediately.

  76. Buccfan37 Says:

    DB55… that’s funny.

  77. Bogiedr Says:

    Trade Mike for any pick, sign Ponder as a backup. Good backup, great teammate and a hot wife.

  78. Brett Says:

    I get it. Glennon will eventually leave for nothing. But if we get a 5th round pick for him and either draft a terrible QB in the 5th round or draft another high round QB it is a hard pill to swallow.

    That being said, why couldn’t the Bucs have gotten something for McCown?

    This regime has a huge problem of giving up players who can play for nothing.

  79. Juan lugo Says:

    Nobody’s calling and the Buccaneers are not selling, Glennon is learning from a real quarterback in Jameis and real offensive coach Kottier. He is a career backup people! He proved it every time he played for the Bucs sense he got here! He isn’t a true leader which is what is needed in a Starting Quarterback and take control run with it! Maybe he’ll learn this know with new offensive coaches.

  80. OneLove Says:

    JAB83 and Eric….whenever you get in here. I’m officially getting a WANG reduction.. I tried to prove a point OVER AND OVER AGAIN but they simply can’t understand or get it through their heads OR IN THEIR MOUTHS!. The Buc Realist who has been here since Joe founded the site and is probably the most negative fan on the site, WAS Joe’s favorite poster until now! Joe’s already stated that a few times in the past, but times change! It’s our time now!!!

    You were right to NOT ignore these people for the rest of the way and keep trying to help them. Eventually they will learn to love and figure out a way to REMOVE ALL THAT HATRED from their hearts! I’ve seen it many times already so I’m pretty sure it will happen again in due time. Just keep doing what your doing!


  81. pittbucfan Says:

    I like Glennon and would like to see him get his shot somewhere. It won’t be here, unless famous Jameis is hurt and we don’t need that. Get the additional pick and give the dude an opportunity.