I don’t blame Byron Leftwich. I wouldn’t have wanted the jersey either. The No. 7 jersey. The one made famous – or infamous – not by Leftwich during his four years as the Jacksonville Jags QB. But by Michael Vick. In ATL.
Who needs it?
After realizing what everyone else knew along along – that Joey Harrington ain’t the one – Falcons owner Arthur Blank made the only move he could make in an effort to save his Season from Hell: He signed Leftwich, two-year deal at $7 million. And a new No. 4 jersey. New Day all around.
Leftwich was cut by the Jags at the end of training camp, making headlines that were not so surprising to football heads. He and JJ head coach John Fox had been at odds for years. Leftwich missed 15 games during the past two seasons and was generally outplayed by former backup Ray Gerard. Leftwich was not sad to go, having the crtical of Fox and his system for years. “Freedom.,” is the word Leftwich has been spewing since the cut.
That said, being unemployed as the NFL moved on was not Leftwich’s idea of paradise. “First of all, I’m a football player and the last couple of weeks have been tough on me,” Leftwich said. “I appreciate the opportunity and I look forward to doing whatever I can to help our team.”
Leftwich is currently listed as the Falcons third-string QB – behind Joey and Some Other Guy. Uh-huh. If I was a betting man, I’d be pretty comfortable saying he’ll see at least a few snaps on Sunday. Particularly if the woe-begotten 0-2 Falcons are getting plucked again.
Leftwich is no messiah. He’s not even close to being Michael Vick (the football player). But that’s a discussion for another blog sport. For now, only this:
Good move for Left. Good move for Arthur Blank. Good move for ATL.
They all deserve better.