Ask Vic: Brooks not consistent yet
What are your impressions of Aaron Brooks? Can he ever really be "the guy" who takes the Saints to the Super Bowl?
--Cliff He has the talent to do so. At 6-foot-4, Brooks has ideal size for a quarterback, along with a super-strong arm and tremendous mobility. He throws an excellent deep pass and his ability to make bullet-like throws allows him to squeeze the ball into tight spots.
But it takes far more than physical skill to take a team the distance. Brooks still needs to show much greater consistency and leadership. The same big wind-up that serves him so well on long passes tends to hurt his accuracy on short throws and intermediate routes.
When I'm looking at the eight divisions in the NFL, it's hard for me to find a tougher division than the AFC South this year. Would you agree?
The AFC South deserves high marks mainly because of the Indianapolis Colts, who are arguably the best team in the conference.
But I'm having a hard time determining which of the other teams in the division looks like a clear-cut contender. Jacksonville is solid, but will need a consistently strong ground attack to have any hope of making a playoff run. And that is a major question mark given the health concerns over Fred Taylor. Unless the Jaguars are able to acquire Travis Henry from the Bills, or another accomplished back, they might very well struggle. Byron Leftwich should make strides as a more experienced quarterback, although the absence of offensive balance would likely limit his (and the team's) progress.
David Carr will be a big part of Houston's success or failure this year.
The Houston Texans might be a factor, but David Carr still has plenty to prove. I think the Tennessee Titans have some major rebuilding ahead of them.
Right now, I'd say the tougher -- and maybe the toughest -- division is the AFC West. San Diego's strong season in 2004 was no fluke; the Chargers have plenty of top-notch talent, including quarterback Drew Brees, and will make another postseason run. The Kansas City Chiefs should finally have a strong enough defense to help their explosive offense.
The Denver Broncos have plenty of defensive shortcomings to overcome and Jake Plummer's erratic play is always a concern, but they are capable of being a factor. With Randy Moss, LaMont Jordan and other upgrades, the Oakland Raiders could easily surge into contention.
Who do you think will make a better quarterback in Miami, A.J. Feeley or Gus Frerotte?
Until their competition in training camp and the preseason begins in earnest, I'll go with Frerotte.
Having spent the past two years working with new Dolphins offensive coordinator Scott Linehan in Minnesota, Frerotte clearly has an advantage in knowledge of the scheme. He also has Linehan's confidence, something Feeley has yet to earn.
Although Frerotte doesn't have much in the way of mobility, he does have a strong arm and a quick release. Those traits should serve him well in Linehan's aggressive, vertical-passing attack.
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