Nate the Not-so Great

Nate Davis was cut by the 49ers in favor of Troy Smith.

Allow me to make an observation.

Both of these players are better right now than Curtis Painter.

I’ve been defending Painter in recent days, and frankly I don’t enjoy it.  While I believe he’s pretty clearly better than Tom Brandstater, I don’t think he’s a quality NFL backup.  Having said that, I recognize that the Colts have certain priorities when it comes to the kind of player they invest in.  They are rolling the same dice this season that they have rolled every season for the past half decade.  They are betting everything on Peyton Manning.

I’m good with that.  While the Colts have talent at other positions, I firmly believe there are few quarterbacks in the league that could survive behind what passes for an offensive line in Indy.  The Colts’ backup quarterback is a boring and irrelevant topic when it comes to analyzing the season.

But I keep going back to what I wrote before:  Smith and Davis are better than Painter.  Smith is off the market, so let’s look at Nate Davis.

By all accounts he has a serious problem with work ethic and doesn’t know ‘what it takes’ to be a pro quarterback.  They say he has a learning disability, and could struggle to process the Colts’ complicated offense.

I’m fully admitting all that up front.  He’s a project, to be sure.  He might not fit in ‘culturally’ with the Colts.

HOWEVER…is he any bigger a project than Painter?  As long as we are going to chuck the season if Manning goes down, let’s chuck it with a guy who looks like he could be a star someday under the right circumstances.  We can split hairs over Painter and Brandstater all day, but neither one has any chance of winning an actual NFL football game.  So why not sign Davis?

Davis would be coming back to Indiana.  Maybe that’s a bad thing because too many people would feed his ego, and he’d be too close to distractions.  It could be a good thing though.  He could come to a place where he’d be welcomed and supported.

Davis doesn’t know how to work at the craft of quarterbacking?  Fine.  Let him spend a season in quarterback meetings with Peyton Manning.

Davis has a learning disability?  Having a disability doesn’t mean he lacks the intellect, just the normal processing tools.  Maybe figuring out how to get him to have the lights turn on is too much work, but maybe it will lead to some creative thinking on the part of the coaching staff.

If the Colts don’t sign Davis, I’ll understand.  He sounds like he could be a bit of a headache for a team that doesn’t want to waste energy at a position as irrelevant as back up QB. Maybe it is better to have a hardworking, studious guy be the back up.  At least he won’t annoy the hell out of Peyton during film sessions.

But when it comes to talent, he blows Curtis Painter out of the water.

Nate Davis could become a good pro one day.  Curtis Painter never will.

I hope the Colts take a chance on him.  If nothing else, sign him to the practice squad.

Even if Curtis Painter isn’t better than Brandstater, Nate Davis certainly is.

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