Opinion: Developing the Wrong Prospect?

The Vikings want to figure out exactly what they have in Tarvaris Jackson by the end of this season, but maybe they should consider developing a quarterback already on their roster who has a bit more experience.

In relief of Tarvaris Jackson this season, Brooks Bollinger has compiled an impressive quarterback rating of 112.3 and is completing over 70 percent of his passes. Is there something written in stone that says he'll never be a successful starting quarterback?

Some guys get a reputation as career backups and never really get a chance to start. Bollinger played a little with the New York Jets before coming to the Vikes, but didn't set the world on fire. The bulk of his playing time was in his second season, playing 11 games and compiling a below-average 72.9 quarterback rating. Right now, he's playing very well whenever he enters a game, and it's only his fourth year in the league, a time when many quarterbacks really come into their own.

The quick-pass offense the Vikes run to complement the dominant running game they have seems to function best whenever Bollinger is in the game. He has the experience and timing to make the easy throws and keep the defense off balance. By comparison, Tarvaris Jackson seems out of sync and confused much of the time, which kills a passing attack based on quick reads, quick throws and precision timing. It's seems clear that Bollinger is the best option right now to give the Vikings a chance to win games, but just last week Brad Childress answered Viking Update's question regarding that situation by saying he believes Jackson gives the team the best chance to win now.

"I do and I believed that coming out of training camp," Childress said. "The other side of that is that equation you have got these nine games (now eight). We talked about (Jackson's) injuries already. I want to see exactly what you have in that package and I want to see him grow and develop."

Why can't Bollinger be considered the answer at quarterback if he continues to play well? Remember when Jeff Garcia came into the league with the 49ers? He was a Canadian football league player who never had a chance in the NFL until Bill Walsh gave him a shot. He went to the Pro Bowl more than once and is still a starting quarterback with Tampa Bay years later. I'm not saying that Bollinger is as good as Garcia, but isn't it possible that he could do similar things? He has the mobility and seems to have the accuracy needed to perform in an offense very similar to the one Garcia runs.

The Vikings coaching staff has talked a lot about developing a young quarterback this year. Is it possible they're focusing on the wrong one?

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