Monday Night’s matchup will pit the San Francisco 49ers against the Washington Redskins. Each team will be starting a quarterback that took the league by storm last year, running and throwing their individual ways to multiple victories and playoff births. Both quarterbacks are struggling this year, as well. The 49ers’ Colin Kaepernick has barely averaged 150 yards per game passing since his field day against the Green Bay Packers. Robert Griffin III has been beleaguered by his recovery from an ACL tear last season, as well as his attention-grabbing antics. Which quarterback, however, is more valuable to their team—both in the short term and the long term?
Taking into account each team’s backup quarterbacks—Colt McCoy in San Francisco and Kirk Cousins for the Redskins, there is no question Kaepernick is the more valuable commodity. The drop-off from Kap to McCoy is much further than from RGIII to Cousins. Cousins, in fact, played pretty well down the stretch last season.
Backup quarterbacks aside; Kaepernick has still made his case for being considered the better and more valuable quarterback. Yes, he has had a down year, but he also has shown potential for winning games with his arm—just look at the Green Bay game to start the season and the Falcons game in the playoffs. He may be having a down year, but he should bounce back.
Griffin, on the other hand, has yet to show elite passing in games. His talent is undeniable, but he has yet to put it all together. Furthermore, he consistently places his body in harm’s way—something Kaepernick has always been good at avoiding. As neither offense has been able to maintain the read-option attack, it is imperative that Griffin learns how to stay healthy.
Lastly, Kaepernick is much better with the media. Even if he looks like a high schooler most of the time, with his beats headphones and look of boredom, I’d take that any day over my quarterback getting a documentary made about himself and constantly, if unintentionally, pointing the finger away from him. Kaepernick is not afraid to take responsibility for his mistakes. With his work ethic, I’d bet his mistakes will become fewer and fewer as time progresses.