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John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

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Old 03-23-2012, 03:03 PM   #1
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John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

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Dan Shonka, who spent one year with Washington, was responsible for signing linebacker Antonio Pierce. Shonka left the Redskins after the 2001 draft to join Kansas Cityís staff. He also has scouted for Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Stars of the USFL and National Football Scouting. He also coached in high school and college. Heís now the general manager and national scout for Ourladsí NFL scouting services. You can visit his site at: Ourlads' NFL Scouting Services - NFL Depth Charts | NFL Draft.

Q: Do you feel both Andrew Luck and RG III have rare ability or is this being overhyped?

A: They do. Itís legitimate. They both have rare ability. To have a pair of them at the top ó one and two ó theyíre very unique. They have similarities in regards to accuracy and their touch on the ball and things like that. Theyíre both big, mobile guys. Luck is probably stronger. Itís a rarity. The last two that were supposed to be like this is when [Peyton] Manning came out with Ryan Leaf, but Leaf was a very dull guy if you talked to him. I did school calls on both guys. It was a lot closer than people will say [about who would go No. 1]. Ö I remember people saying they had a hard time deciding between the two. I saw both and talked to both and I didnít have any problems deciding.

Q: Whatís your analysis after watching them on film?

A: One thing about Mike Shanahan is that he kind of thinks outside the box a little bit. Heís a West Coast guy fundamentally, but he sees the big picture more than maybe some of the West Coast guys where theyíre very structured and you run everything that the West Coast entails that was learned from the Bill Walsh system. Mike got away from it a little bit in Denver because he ran the ball, whereas Andy Reid likes to throw every down. I prefer what Mike does, combine the run with the pass, which takes the pressure off the quarterback so when you have a young guy like RG III you have to do that.

And RG III is such a polished passer. Heís in the same system that Kevin Kolb was in. But I didnít like Kevin coming out. I gave him a fourth-round grade, and I still donít like him. I think Arizona wasted a lot of money when they brought him out there. They were sold a bad bill of goods. Now, RG III is a very sharp guy, very smart and picks things up and heíll pick up this West Coast offense. Iím sure theyíll scale it back for him [initially], but his intelligence and athletic ability on the deep routes for instance, he doesnít hang that ball out there. That ball just drops in there. Heís book smart. Heís football smart. Heís consistent in his overall game. Thatís the other thing that people really like. As is Luck; heís a very consistent guy.

I think thatís the big thing, the intelligence of RG III and his consistency. There was a time during the year where through seven or eight games he completed 80 percent of his passes. You canít do that against air. You and I going out in the back yard playing catch couldnít hit 80 percent. And it wasnít like it was all horizontal routes. It was down the field, too. He threw the vertical routes. I will say Kendall Wright made some spectacular catches; sometimes the ball would be overthrown and Kendall laid out for them and did good things. The other thing about RG III is his rare movement skills. He has outstanding foot quickness. He can move easy in the pocket where he can sidestep the rush and still step into the throw. The other thing we like, and it happens faster in the NFL, is his ability to see the field. He doesnít read NFL progressions left to right all the time. He works one side of the field, but he sees things on the field clearly where a lot of pro quarterbacks and guys who come into the league donít see the field clearly. It looks like a blur to them when they drop back. Sometimes they can work their way out of it and sometimes they canít. The way he reads his progression and the way he sees the field, his vision, is better than other young quarterbacks. Ö Itís his anticipation with those receivers, the ball is there when they come out of their break.

Q: Is durability an issue or does the way he handles the rest of the game limit the hits he takes?

A: Thatís right. That is a concern. He did have the concussion vs. Texas Tech where he got hit before the half and did not play the second half, and he had the knee surgery from earlier in his career. Heís a wiry type of guy. But itís not like he’s stiff or anything and that helps him. A guy thatís flexible will bend but not break. The athlete that he is will help him absorb or bend. Ö Every quarterback [has some issue]. You remember what Cam Newton went through last year? People canít shoot many holes in these quarterbacks.

Q: Is one clearly No. 1 or is this just about the preference of the teams involved?

A: I think the people that are NFL purists, the coordinators and head coaches, they really like Andrew Luck because he makes it easier for you to evaluate him. Heís a big guy, heís a strong guy, heís a smart guy. And heís athletic and mobile. Heís all that stuff and RG III is coming out of a spread offense which is a lot different than the West Coast pro offense that Luck ran. If RG III ran this same offense, then thereíd be more of a chance for RG III to make a move ahead of Luck. But they donít. They run a high-octane, fast-paced offense. Iíll tell you what, RG III will see one corner per team that is good and the other guys will be covered by guys who will be watching at home. That offense can make a defense look foolish, and you can rack up a lot of cheap yards. In Luckís offense itís a pro-style plus itís run-oriented. That fools people, too. Luck could have racked up 4 or 5,000 yards passing, but thatís not what they did there.

Q: Who will be the best QB in five years?

A: I think theyíre both very talented. To say one will be better than the other? The thing is, RG III might get to where heís gonna go faster because his team will be better. He may look better earlier because of a better surrounding cast. Ultimately down the road, as long as they both stay healthy, you have two good quarterbacks. If I had to pick one, I would pick Luck. But with RG III thereís no reason to think it wonít be a close one. It would be great to have either one of those guys. Cam Newton helped out RG III by what he did last year. Heís really the first spread guy, except for maybe Drew Brees there hasnít been many spread quarterbacks, to have great success in the league.

Hopefully the pieces will come together in Washington. Griffin is sharp and articulate and very intelligent and impressive, and Luck is too. Luck is articulate and very thoughtful. When he talks he has a lot of impact in what he has to say. Theyíre definitely a pair we hope stays healthy for their whole careers. And Luck would absolutely have been great in that offense. Mike knows what to do with quarterbacks, and heís got one now.
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Old 03-23-2012, 04:06 PM   #2
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Re: John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

Thanks Matty, awesome stuff from Shonka again.
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Old 03-23-2012, 04:46 PM   #3
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Re: John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

Ya I love getting these emails too. Thanks again Matty.
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Old 03-23-2012, 05:04 PM   #4
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Re: John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

Definitely enjoy reading these. Thanks Matty.
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Old 03-23-2012, 06:35 PM   #5
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Re: John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

Stop posting these THREADS you are getting me so PUMPED for the season to start already.
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Old 03-24-2012, 09:44 AM   #6
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Re: John Keim - Q&A With: Dan Shonka

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattyk View Post
q: Who will be the best qb in five years?

A: I think theyíre both very talented. To say one will be better than the other? the thing is, rg iii might get to where heís gonna go faster because his team will be better. He may look better earlier because of a better surrounding cast. ultimately down the road, as long as they both stay healthy, you have two good quarterbacks. If i had to pick one, i would pick luck. But with rg iii thereís no reason to think it wonít be a close one. It would be great to have either one of those guys. Cam newton helped out rg iii by what he did last year. Heís really the first spread guy, except for maybe drew brees there hasnít been many spread quarterbacks, to have great success in the league.

Hopefully the pieces will come together in washington. Griffin is sharp and articulate and very intelligent and impressive, and luck is too. Luck is articulate and very thoughtful. When he talks he has a lot of impact in what he has to say. Theyíre definitely a pair we hope stays healthy for their whole careers. And luck would absolutely have been great in that offense. Mike knows what to do with quarterbacks, and heís got one now.
can't wait!!!!!
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