Former Alabama QBs hold different positions with NFL teams

Published 8:35 am Sunday, October 4, 2020

For the first time in 35 years, the University of Alabama has three quarterbacks on NFL rosters at the same time.

AJ McCarron, Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts are backups on their respective teams and a play away from being starters. McCarron plays for the Houston Texans. Tagovailoa with the Miami Dolphins. Hurts plays for the Philadelphia Eagles.

The rare Alabama trivia happened three times over the last 50 years and all three cases involve Kenny Stabler.

From 1968-1971: Bart Starr (Green Bay Packers, Joe Namath (New York Jets) and Stabler (Oakland Raiders).

From 1979-1983, Stabler (Houston Oilers), Jeff Rutledge (Los Angeles Rams) and Richard Todd (New York Jets). Stabler also played with the New Orleans Saints in 1982-84. Rutledge played with the New York Gians in 1983. Todd played with the Saints in 1984.

In 1983, Stabler (New Orleans Saints), Rutledge (New York Giants) and Todd (Jets).

McCarron, Tagovailoa and Hurts are three former Heisman Trophy runner-ups in different positions with their teams.

McCarron is a solid No. 2 quarterback behind DeShaun Watson with the Houston Texans. Unless Watson gets hurt, McCarron will remain on the sidelines.

The Miami Dolphins consider Tagovailoa its starting quarterback of the future. At some point this season, Tagovailoa will take over.

Of the three, Hurts has gotten the most attention with the Philadelphia Eagles. He’s popular before taking a snap with the fans and media.

The Eagles fanbase are going through “the backup quarterback syndrome,” a condition when the starter and team struggles and its fans and media demand a change under center.

In other words, the backup quarterback is the most popular guy on a football team.

No question Philadelphia (0-3) is struggling, but not all of its problems are Carson Wentz’s fault. The Eagles have injuries on the offensive line, wide receiver and secondary.

This is why I criticized Philadelphia using a second-round pick on Hurts when the Eagles had other needs in order to contend for a Super Bowl title.

Especially after giving Wentz a $128 million contract extension.

Eagles coach Doug Pederson said this week he’s not changing quarterbacks. I agree. Hurts is not ready, but they should give him packages to ultize in games.

I believe the Eagles plan on using Hurts the same way the New Orleans Saints play Taysom Hill: quarterback, running back, receiver and on special teams.

In my opinion, Hurts is a quarterback. If groomed properly, he can be this generation’s version of Donovan McNabb, a borderline Hall of Famer who took the Eagles to a Super Bowl in 2003. He deserves that opportunity.

It would be cool to someday see an NFL game with Hurts and Tagovailoa as starting quarterbacks.