Casey was not ready to play that day for a lot of reasons. There is a fine line between supporting your QB in the game and abandonment when the guy is not able to play due to injury and lack of game prep.
This statement...Football 16...has made me try to look at the situation through Casey Printers eyes. Try to imagine:
In your first year you make the Leos as the third string quarterback. You get only a few game reps all season. In the off-season you work on your throwing motion, study film, and work out relentlessly. You come into training camp prepared physically and mentally to try to become the second string quarterback. You have an excellent training camp and exhibition season and win the #2 back up job.
The starting quarterback goes down and you now have to lead the team. Fan expectations have increased. Within a short period of time you’ve become the key part of transforming the Lions offence into the most explosive, dynamic offence in the league. Your offensive line is awful but you run for your life in a lot of games. You make great plays and a buzz is created about you which brings fans in droves. Your play is so good that, when the #1 starter returns its impossible to take you out. You injury your toe and have it frozen for each game. A device is fitted into your shoe which attempts to prevent making the injury worse. You give it all for your team, running and throwing without being able to put proper weight on the toe.
You lead your team through the Western Finals and into the Grey Cup. The team decides it wants the starting quarterback to start. The team loses and in the last three quarters the starting quarterback only throws for 100 yards. You don’t get in for one play. You feel heartbroken. Family, friends are also very disappointed.
You have your toe injury operation in the off-season. You can’t train properly due to the toe injury. You wonder if the Leos really want you. You wonder if the offensive coordinator has have confidence in They tell you that you’ll be competing for the number one job in training camp.
You tell the Leos you want to continue to play for them. Your uncle/agent tells you this is the once chance to get a big contract. He’s family, he’s older, he tells you to trust him. The Leos offer a generous contract. Your uncle advises against signing it.
You go into training camp and the toe injury hasn’t fully healed. You announce that you can’t compete and are prepared to back up Dave Dickenson. You try to throw but you are developing a painful shoulder injury from changing your arm motion throwing without weight on the toe. It’s something that has been created from last season and trying to throw in training camp and practices.
You do everything to rehab the arm including working in the pool to strengthen the shoulder muscles. Sometimes the arm works fine, other days its stiff and painful. You haven’t played in the exhibition season and rarely have a full practice.
Dickenson comes up with back spasms the day of the game against Edmonton, one of the formidable defences in the league. You haven’t practiced and now your starting. You play well, considering the circumstances, but not to your previous standard. The team wins the game but there is criticism of your play. You take responsibilty, don’t make excuses, and say your going to work as hard as possible to get better.
A couple of games later and the Leos are playing Hamilton. You’ve been sick and haven’t practiced hardly at all. Dickenson goes down with a slight shoulder separation and your back out there. Dickenson had been moving the ball well. You move the ball well early but then start to struggle. Your arm accuracy is off and the pace of the game is hard to adjust to. You do everything you can to try to change things. You take off with the ball trying to leap over a couple of defenders at the goalline…a dangerous play risking injury but you’re giving it yourall. Your team keeps its undefeated record alive but your performance is disappointing.
The next game is against Saskatchewan, the best defence in the league, at Taylor Field in Regina, a tough place to play. You practice well early in the week but by Thursday and Friday the arm is too sore to practice.
You go into the game and Saskatchewan is blitzing like hell. Missed offensive line assignments result in early sacks. Your offence starts off in bad field position. A number of off-side and holding calls make the situation even more difficult. The running game isn’t going anywhere. You throw short at times but need to go downfield. Two passes are intercepted…your arm is painful and won’t loosen up. Finally you get a drive going but Paris Jackson fumbles.
As the second half begins you tell Buck Pierce to get ready…you don’t think you’ll be able to play much longer. On a run towards the sidelines you fall out of bounds on your shoulder. You realize that you can’t go on, your team is losing, you can’t do what you’ve been able to do, and you pull yourself out because you know the best chance for your team to win is to go with Buck Pierce, who pulls the game out of the hat with some great play.
A lot of people are very critical of you. Your arm hurts like hell. Your playing for $62, 000 a year because your uncle didn’t know what he was doing. You’ve answered the call each time you’ve been asked to play, even though you knew you were ill prepared. You’ve given it your all and you’ve pulled yourself to give your team a better chance to win. You don’t know what it will take to heal. Your future is in doubt and your dream is blowing up in your face. Your a young quarterback with a lot of talent who only a short time ago was the CFL MVP. You’ve done a ton of work for the Leos to increase their community profile and charity work in the community.
Now a lot of fans are ready to throw you in the quarterback trash can.
Right now, I don’t think its a lot of fun to be Casey Printers.
Right now, I don’t think its a l