Matt Leinart: I deserve to start


The Raiders haven’t named their starting quarterback for Sunday’s finale against the Chargers, but one of the candidates believes that he’s deserving of the starting job.

While Matt Leinart says he’d be supportive of Terrelle Pryor in the event the Raiders decide to go that direction, he feels that he’s done enough to get the nod with Carson Palmer out thanks to injured ribs and a bruised lung.

“I just think in this situation, I think I deserve to play, I deserve to start. Not sure what’s going to happen, but that’s all you can do — just keep preparing, keep working hard, be here, be accountable and whatever happens, whatever decision is made, that’s what’s made. You can’t do anything about it,” Leinart said, via “So if they want to start Terrelle and evaluate him and see what he can do, then I’ll support that, and I’ll help him this week and help him during the game. But if they make me the starter, I’m just going to go out there and try to capitalize on that opportunity.”

Offensive coordinator Greg Knapp, who coached Leinart in Houston the last two seasons as well, wasn’t too thrilled with what he saw from the quarterback after Leinart replaced Palmer last weekend. He was unhappy with Leinart’s decision making on an interception and found other flaws with the quarterback’s play as well.

“He didn’t play as well as I would have liked,” Knapp said. “I wished his footwork would have been better on a consistent basis. It’s hard for any backup quarterback to come in on short notice without any reps, but that comes with the job. You got to know that going in. He struggled a little bit with the footwork and his consistency. He had it sometimes but not all the time.”

Leinart is pretty much a known commodity at this point in his career and Knapp’s not the first person to find him lacking. Pryor might not be ready for a starting quarterback job, but seeing how close he is would likely benefit the Raiders more in the long run.

37 responses to “Matt Leinart: I deserve to start

  1. i personally like matt leinart and thinkn he should be retained as our #2 qb, however i think tp6 needs to get on the field so we can evaluate what we have and move on.
    we are the only team that is having a #2 and #3 qb controversy, smh!!

  2. Ok Mr. Captain Checkdown Leinart. This dude is lucky to still be in the league.

    I use to be a supporter of Leinart until his last year in Arizona. He is clearly not a starting-caliber quarterback in the NFL and should feel lucky that he still has a job.

  3. Nothing like a whiney entitled bum who can’t play.

    Hopefully, this clown will finally be out of the league once he’s done with the proverbial “end of my career” Raider stop this weekend.

  4. Well Matt Lionheart, that makes one person. You don’t even deserve to be on a NFL roster.

  5. A washed-up first round bust with an 8-10 record as a starter and a career QB rating of 70.2 deserves absolutely nothing more. He got paid millions of dollars to be terrible and he got a chance to start. Time’s up.

  6. There really is no point to starting Leinart. He is who we thought he was. He may have a long career ahead of him as a clipboard carrier, but he’s no one’s idea of a franchise QB.

    Not saying that Pryor is a franchise QB, but at least you can make the argument that he hasn’t gotten the opportunity to show what’s he got.

  7. in greg “makes me want to take a ” knapp offense it does not matter who starts. I guess really we are better off with TP because our OG’s are so bad the d-line of the opposing team will be in the backfield, and TP can make more with a busted terrible offensive play call.

    All the house cleaning this off season, it has to start with Knapp.

  8. Start Pryor. Odds are this game will be a train wreck with whomever starts. At least with Pryor there is a chance it will be entertaining.

  9. Carson Palmer is 33 years old. The Raiders need to start looking for their QBOTF. They should start Pryor and see what they have. Leinart is a free agent at the end of the year. How Pryor plays will determine how they approach the off season acquisition of a QB.

  10. I don’t want to be the nonconformist here, but Leinart should get one last chance to start. The guy is never going to be an NFL star, or even a legitimate NFL starter: at least from what the public has seen, he’s just straight up terrible.

    On the other hand, however, he never really got a fair shot. He was yanked in Arizona in favor of a resurgent Hall of Famer in Kurt Warner, bounced to the Texans as a backup, and then signed with Oakland in the hopes of competing for a starting gig. I have no vested interest in Leinart, USC, or Oakland, and other than getting some tape on Pryor, I can’t see any reason not to let Leinart start a game. Let’s not forget Kurt Warner, Jake Delhomme, and Vinny Testaverde were all solid late blooming quarterbacks.

    I don’t think Leinart will be one of those, in fact I don’t even think he’ll succeed, but at this point, the Raiders have nothing to lose by giving the Heisman winner a second chance.

    Like I said, I was never a Leinart fan, or a USC fan, but, just on a human level, it would be a shame if Leinart spent the rest of his life brooding because he never got a real shot. If he goes out on Sunday and throws four picks, he won’t be happy, but at least he knows he tried and failed, which is better than wondering “what if” for the rest of his life.

  11. Greg Knapp is this guy still around. What has he done cant think of a winning offense he has run other then Atlanta maybe he should go coach with Mora again

  12. jwreck,

    I agree. This guy was jerked around by Ken Wisenhunt from day 1. He was never given a chance to fully develop as a player and Wis destroyed his confidence at every chance he saw, publicly in the media even. In fact, Wis has allowed his QBs not named Kurt Warner (who was still constantly banged up) to get their brains beaten in on a regular basis. Kurt Warner was the only one smart enough to know the quick timing routes and 1 and 3 step drop passes to avoid getting seriously injured like keeps happening to whoever they put behind that atrocious O-Line in Arizona.

    I know its en vogue to bash Kevin Kolb, but the guy has pretty good numbers when he plays. The problem is that he’s getting destroyed by the opposing D in the process. Maybe Arizona could, I dunno, draft or sign some QUALITY O-lineman instead of taking guys in the last 2-3 years of their careers?

  13. No, I disagree jwreck, I think if he really wanted to start he would have chosen a team that needed a starter. He’s purposely choosing jobs where he can be a backup.

  14. Of course Leinart DESERVES to start! He’s a heisman trophy and national championship winner! He’s been successful at every level! He’s proven he can win at this level! Why did the Raiders trade for him if they’re not going to start him? Why are they keeping him down? Is it because they know he’ll win games for them and make them look stupid for not starting him sooner? This is an outrage! FREE LEINART?

    Yes, Tebowmaniacs, this is for you. Sounds a little crazy, doesn’t it?

  15. Mat Leinart, Carson Palmer, Matt cassel, Mark Sanchez, and coming soon, Matt Barkley. What in the world is going on at USC with QBs? It has become Disappointment U. I say give Pryor the keys. We already know he can run very fast. We just need to know if he can read defenses, think and throw. If he can do at least 2 of those well, Oakland already has its QB of the future. If all 3 are good to go. They have a potential star.

  16. i believe this guy had 2.. one with arizona in which he just destroyed then he got lucky and got a 2nd chance which many many qbs in this lg dont get a chance at… and he messed that up 2..

  17. Leinart will start and play the whole game. Reggie will not let Pryor play for fear he will be successful. Starting in the off season Reggie will purge the roster of anyone associated with Al Davis. He started last year by getting rid of all the scouts. Players are next. DA and Knapp will be back. Bet on it.

  18. Yeah, he deserves to start, on maybe 2 teams… The Jets & the Cardinals. However, he wasn’t too bad in his 1 start with Houston last year. You never know… Had he not been injured, he may have put a nice streak together & could be starting today.

  19. Leinart has always thought he deserved to be a starter. That’s why he never put any work into improving his game.

  20. Just when you think the Raiders can’t sink any lower, we get this. “I deserve to start”!!! Really? Can we stop already?

    Never thought I’d see the day when I was glad to see a Raiders’ season come to an end. To even discuss Leinhart’s worthiness is comical. I don’t think any other player this bad could have lasted this long in the league. The only other QB to win a Heisman, be a 1st rounder and last this long was Jim Plunkett and we know how that turned out.

    Difference was Plunkett was on a horrible Patriots team and got beat like a rented mule. His ability was never in question. Leinhart on the other hand has shown nothing in his 7 years in the league.

  21. I would be surprised if Lienhart finished the game. I’m not suggesting the Chargers are a world-class defense, but their pass rush has improved, and they’ve been rushing everyone lately. Plus, they have nothing to lose but pride. TP at least has good escapability, and mobile QBs give the Chargers fits. I cheer for no-one’s injury, but I just don’t see Lienhart coming out of this game healthy.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!