Case Keenum not looking over his shoulder

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On what coincidentally was the first day of the NFL draft in 1999, I ran a half marathon roughly 30 miles outside of Columbus, Ohio. Several hundred people showed up to trudge through neighborhoods and back roads. Five or six miles in to the 13.1-mile race, I came to a spot where it wasn’t clear whether to turn right or keep going straight. Based on the markings on the road, it looked like I should turn right, but the lead pack(s) had gone straight.

So I decided to turn. And it quickly became obvious that roughly 50 people who had been in front of me had gone the wrong way. Which meant that, halfway through a half marathon, I was in first place.

I knew it wouldn’t last. But I enjoyed it while it did. And I didn’t bother to check behind me, because I knew that ultimately there was nothing I could do to hold off the guy who was going to win. (Along with plenty of others.)

I thought of that day for the first time in a long time after I saw this headline at ESPN.com: “Arriving at camp above Rams’ depth chart, Case Keenum not looking over his shoulder.”

There’s no reason for Keenum to look over his shoulder. It’s just a matter of time before he’ll be passed by rookie first-rounder Jared Goff.

Sure, the Rams may try to make it look like Keenum has a chance to play most or all of the season, for the same reason they toyed with everyone for two-plus weeks before making it known that Goff would be the first overall pick. They also may want to give Goff a chance to build confidence by creating the impression that he actually accomplished something instead of having the starting job handed to him.

So enjoy the lead while you can, Case. Eventually, you’ll be looking at the back of a blue jersey with “GOFF” in gold letters.

6 responses to “Case Keenum not looking over his shoulder

  1. Case put up such crazy numbers in college, I wonder what he would do if given a chance to succeed in the NFL (ie play in a pass-heavy offense).

    While I am dreaming, I hope some coach brings back the run and shoot offense with some degree of success. It’s so risky (pass or get your QB killed) it is just pure entertainment.

    I guess what I am trying to say is that Jeff Fisher has boring, vanilla offense.

  2. I think Keenum will end up with a nice sort of journeyman/backup career for himself, culminating with a couple decent Fitzpatrick-like seasons before retires. That or he’ll get knocked in the head one more time and be done.

  3. So many ‘sure thing’ first round QBs have been a bust. Brady Quinn, Jeff George, Vince Young, David Carr, Mike Phipps, Joey Harrington, Tim Couch, Andre Ware, Heath Shuler, Rick Mirer, Todd Marinovich, Art Schlichter, JaMarcus Russell, and Ryan Leaf come to mind. That’s just a sampling. If you go back even further there are many more like Gary Beban.

    On the other hand, so many longshots have beaten the odds and become stars. Tom Brady was a sixth round selection. Johnny Unitas, Bart Starr, Brett Favre, Joe Kapp, Kurt Warner, Doug Flutie, and more come to mind.

    So don’t be so sure. Case Keenum has already shown quite a bit of resiliency and has gained some great NFL experience while not having the best receivers, running backs, or offensive line.

    He’s had to overcome being too short, not having played in an NFL style college offense, and going undrafted. Those are big handicaps. Yet here he is, listed as the starter by one of the NFL’s most respected and experienced head coaches.

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