Graham Harrell believes he’ll be ready if Aaron Rodgers goes down


I noted last week that there are concerns in Green Bay about whether backup quarterback Graham Harrell is competent to step in and lead the Packers if Aaron Rodgers gets hurt. Harrell is aware of those concerns, and he insists he’s up to the task.

Harrell has never played in an NFL regular-season game and has never looked the part of an NFL starter, either during his college career at Texas Tech or during his brief stint in the Canadian Football League. But he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he believes in himself and believes that the Packers will be OK if Rodgers goes down.

As a quarterback, you better be confident in yourself and believe in yourself,” Harrell said. “I believe in myself. We have a great support staff and a great group of people in Green Bay. They get quarterbacks ready to play and train quarterbacks. I’ve learned from some of the best in the business.”

Rodgers is the reigning NFL MVP, and no team can lose an MVP and not take a hit. But in the last two years, Packers backup Matt Flynn has done an excellent job of filling in for Rodgers when called upon. Whether Harrell can do the same is a big question facing the Packers.

But there’s no question in Harrell’s mind that he’s up to the task.

22 responses to “Graham Harrell believes he’ll be ready if Aaron Rodgers goes down

  1. No one thought Flynn would be up to the task, either. McCarthy and his staff know what they’re doing.

  2. If Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy could turn a 7th rounder like Matt Flynn into a quality backup and eventually a starting QB, I don’t see why Harrell can’t have the same opportunity. And Rodgers has proved to be durable enough that it warrants giving 2nd team snaps to Harrell over bringing in a vet to learn the system in a few weeks before the pre-season starts.

    If Rodgers does go down though, the Packers season will probably be over.

  3. I recall three or four balls skipping off the turf at the senior bowl. He just doesn’t have the arm strength.

  4. I only saw Harrell play one game in college, against Nebraska in 2008. He completed 20 of 25 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns. More important, I remember that he looked calm, poised and in command in the pocket. Reminded me a bit of Tom Brady.

  5. Flynn hasn’t really been tested yet…when he is, he will fail. So would Rodgers outside of gb.

  6. It doesn’t matter who is next in line does it? After all, Rodgers benefits from the “system”, and isn’t really very talented….right? Yeah right.

  7. TT will only start looking if Harrell looks bad in the preseason. Otherwise, he will sit tight. Rodgers was backed up in 2008 by Flynn and Brohm, both rookies.

  8. Even if Harrell isn’t a great quality back-up..with the great weapons the Pack have he would still put up decent numbers

  9. I’m sorry anyone looking for a system QB refer to Tom Brady Rodgers can take his team down field just fine without the “system” brady in each of his first 3 superbowls was spoon fed by weis and belieck and the last two he has given a longer leash and you saw how that went. And even when brady went down Cassel stepped in and went 10-6. Rodgers has the arm and vision you can’t teach in a system Brady has the reads on a defense which can be. I’m just saying I hate when NE fans try to put Rodgers down like he’s not good and heck Im a die heart eagles fan waiting for Vick to destroy defenses but I can’t stand it when a QB who is actually great gets called a system QB

  10. Matt cassel in ne didn’t miss to much of a beat. Going from 16-0 to an 11-5 seems like a drop but I don’t think the pats were going 32-0 over two seasons even with tom brady

    Isn’t Matt flynn still trying to earn a starting spot un seattle?

  11. What do you expect Harrell to say? Is there a backup QB anywhere in the NFL that would say he’s “not ready” to play if called upon…?

    That man would be out of a job…quickly.

  12. Harrell played in a pass first wide open attack at texas tech. Not saying hed step right in and play great, but he should be comfortable in that type of system.

  13. Harrell = Colt Brennan

    And Colt Brennan was a disgusting flop in three different leagues and is currently unemployed.

    Food for thought……

  14. He’s got a heckuva cast around him I’ll give him that. But as soon as the packers o-line evaporates Aaron Rodgers curls into the fetal position and sacks himself ala Jim Everett, so I don’t see Rodgers going down anytime soon. Unless its on Jeff Saturday that is.

  15. From Detroit n Rodgers is the man regardless. Flynn is a bum n got lucky against a depleted secondary vs. us! Harrell is a joke n has never looked anywhere close to Brady. Stafford is gonna be top passer in league within 3yrs! Go lions!

  16. This whole “system quarterback” thing is pretty funny.” If all it takes is a “system” for any no-name non-talent QB to shine, why doesn’t every team have a system?

    Heck then we’d have 32 teams each year playing in the Super Bowl!

  17. Graham Harrell has to graduate the Packers offseason Quarterback school of reading defenses and all that goes with being an Aaron Rodger’s clone that McCarthy instituted this for his Quarterbacks when he came to Green Bay… Believe me he wouldn’t be in the position that he is unless he passed. Graham Harrell if we all remember made a name for himself by helping Texas Tech to their first BCS bowl in college by throwing to the now 49ers Micheal Crabtree and Texas Tech had its higbest ever ranking in the top 5 of college football, if he develops Harrell could develop into a good pro…be has the arm…his biggest adjustment was playing under the center when all he did was play from the shotgun formation in college. On the other side, name any Texas Tech quarterback who had a successful career in the NFL ? !

  18. Rodgers is talented of course. I think though that Flynn proved something. He proved that there’s more to the success of that offense than just Rodgers. So maybe Harrell would surprise the fans after all.

  19. Whoever said Detroit Lions Quarterback Matt Stafford will be a top 5 quarterback within 3 seasons is off their rocker….he already is he passed for 5,000 yards last season …

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