It’s been an all too common occurrence in recent years in Pittsburgh. Ben Roethlisberger gets hurt and in comes the back-up. Most recent among those back-ups has been Landry Jones who is as well-liked in Pittsburgh as a guy in a Vontaze Burfict jersey standing along Art Rooney Avenue. Why is there so much dislike of this man? Why so do so many hate him?
Trust me, you’re in the minority if you like Landry Jones and what’s odd about that is that usually the back-up quarterback is everyone’s favorite! Not Jones. Since he was drafted in the fourth round four years ago, he has been vilified any number of times and I have no problem in telling you that I’ve been a part of that hatred.
I don’t “hate” Landry Jones the person because I’ve never met him. I can’t judge him based on anything other than his ability to play quarterback and that’s why I have issues with him. Well, I suppose I also dislike him because he was drafted way too high and far ahead of guys we could have used at other positions but I’m not going to re-hash that (Actually I will below). Steelers’ General Manager Kevin Colbert swung and missed on this one. It happens…
One reason for the hatred is that Jones isn’t Ben Roethlisberger. He certainly can’t help that now can he? Therefore, why do Steelers’ fans have such disregard for him? Probably because any time the back-up QB comes in the reason for that is not a positive one.
This Sunday, I’m taking a different approach. Rather than disparage Jones I need to support him. Do I think he can do what it takes to beat the hottest team in the NFL right now? Let’s just say I have my doubts. But I also had doubts about plenty of other situations in Steelers’ history and those turned out fine.
Jones needs to manage the game and take care of the ball. This is the usual set of expectations for any NFL back-up. But it’s more important than ever on Sunday because he can’t afford to give the Patriots short fields with mistakes. The defense needs every bit of help it can get and if Jones can take care of his job then who knows?
Every time I see him make a bad play I think back to what might have been had that pick been a corner or edge rusher rather than a quarterback but that’s not his fault.
So no, I don’t hate Landry Jones. I hate that we used a fourth round pick on Landry Jones. That’s what I hate.