Me and Stephen McGee

by - April 28, 2009 - Posted in Offseason

On Sunday Stephan McGee became only the third quarterback the Cowboys have drafted since 1990 when he was selected in the fourth round with the 101st overall pick. With arguably bigger names left undrafted and heading toward free agency, what went into the Cowboys decision to take a chance on the former Aggie?

McGee was a highly prized recruit out of Burnet High School. He never quite lived up to expectations at A&M, aside from winning a couple of big games against Texas. He only started 4 games his senior season, partially because of injury, but also because of quarterback competition from junior Jerrod Johnson.

“I’m happy for Stephen McGee,” said Texas Tech coach Mike Leach, “The Dallas Cowboys like him more than his coaches at A&M did.”

Coach Leach loves to pick on A&M, but there is a nugget of truth in his barb. The Cowboys love McGee’s character, toughness and heart. They love that he didn’t point fingers for his perceived lack of success, and they love that he stuck with a school that doesn’t have the best track record of turning out quarterbacks or a system that showcases the talent of a quarterback. Plus he did have a pretty good workout at the combine.

Questions remain, such as does he still have an arm after pretty much becoming a run first quarterback? But overall the Cowboys saw something in the kid from Burnet, and took a chance that given the right conditions and proper coaching, he could turn into something special.

14 Responses to Me and Stephen McGee

Luis

April 28th, 2009 at 12:02 pm

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I'm coming around on this pick a little bit for two reasons:

1) The Cowboys actually drafted a quarterback. They've done that a grand total of 3 times in the last 20 years (the other two being Bill Musgrave and Quincy Carter). Whether or not McGee pans out – or is even needed – is irrelevant to the fact that Jerry has finally learned that quarterbacks don't grow on trees. And that you must have someone waiting in the wings in case your franchise quarterback gets injured, retires or both. That lesson was learned the hard way after Aikman was lost to his final concussion.

2) McGee was, in fact, a highly recruited quarterback prospect coming out of high school. So he's not your typical option quarterback like Tommy Frazier or Eric Crouch. He actually did what Troy Aikman did not do while he was in college: stay at a college with an offensive system that did not fit his skill set. As you may or may not recall, Aikman initially started at Oklahoma but later transferred to UCLA as a result of Barry Switzer's offensive philosophy.

This, however, makes McGee somewhat of an unknown commodity and a raw project. Since he has never played in a pro-style offense, his learning curve will require him to sit for a number of years. Which is fine, as long as Romo continues to develop. It's the sort of low-risk, high-reward move that can make a decent draft look better. Only problem is, the Cowboys' 2009 draft was not decent. It was utter crap.

Alex

April 28th, 2009 at 1:04 pm

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I recall McGee beating my Longhorns in 2006 and 2007 season. I also recall wanting him to be mauled by a pack of wild javelinas. He seemed to have toughness, intensity and good leadership ability. Those are certainly qualities that are important in every QB (maybe some of it can rub off on Romo). With Romo on the books for the foreseeable future, there's plenty of time to see whether McGee will develop into anything resembling a competent NFL QB. I'd rather take that approach than go all in with Matthew Stafford for $70 million. All in all, I have far less of a problem with this pick than I do the ridiculous waste of a 5th round pick on a kickoff specialist.

Ryan

April 28th, 2009 at 1:20 pm

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Hi Alex… I've seen your comments in a couple of other threads. Welcome to FJJ!

I must ask, what's a javelina? :-)

Luis

April 28th, 2009 at 3:23 pm

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<img src=http://www.bio.davidson.edu/people/vecase/behavior/Spring2008/Goldrick/Assets/Javelina-tpwd.jpg></img>

Ryan

April 28th, 2009 at 3:33 pm

Avatar

Can't post pics directly in the comments, but you can link to them!

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4

Those things are ugly.

Alex

April 28th, 2009 at 4:47 pm

Avatar

Thanks for the welcome. Luis steered me to FJJ and I have enjoyed finding a place that shares my views on the Cowboys in general and more specifically, that Jerry Jones is running football operations like he's Captain Smith on the maiden voyage of the Titanic: full speed ahead to disaster. At least the Titanic had a band.

As has been detailed below, javelinas are a type of wild boar who can be very irritable and are found, among other places, in South Texas. I think it would be most unpleasant to be mauled by a wild pig that releases a strong odor while injuring you with razor sharp tusks.

Jeff

April 28th, 2009 at 4:55 pm

Avatar

Stephen McGee is a competitor, I will give him that. He's got a little cockyness issue though. I remember him entering the game against the Longhorns this past season and he got a little roughed-up by the Texas defense. He ran over to the Texas sideline and tried to take them all on. Seriously Stephen?

Luis

April 28th, 2009 at 5:02 pm

Avatar

I'm coming around on this pick a little bit for two reasons:

1) The Cowboys actually drafted a quarterback. They've done that a grand total of 3 times in the last 20 years (the other two being Bill Musgrave and Quincy Carter). Whether or not McGee pans out – or is even needed – is irrelevant to the fact that Jerry has finally learned that quarterbacks don't grow on trees. And that you must have someone waiting in the wings in case your franchise quarterback gets injured, retires or both. That lesson was learned the hard way after Aikman was lost to his final concussion.

2) McGee was, in fact, a highly recruited quarterback prospect coming out of high school. So he's not your typical option quarterback like Tommy Frazier or Eric Crouch. He actually did what Troy Aikman did not do while he was in college: stay at a college with an offensive system that did not fit his skill set. As you may or may not recall, Aikman initially started at Oklahoma but later transferred to UCLA as a result of Barry Switzer's offensive philosophy.

This, however, makes McGee somewhat of an unknown commodity and a raw project. Since he has never played in a pro-style offense, his learning curve will require him to sit for a number of years. Which is fine, as long as Romo continues to develop. It's the sort of low-risk, high-reward move that can make a decent draft look better. Only problem is, the Cowboys' 2009 draft was not decent. It was utter crap.

Alex

April 28th, 2009 at 6:04 pm

Avatar

I recall McGee beating my Longhorns in 2006 and 2007 season. I also recall wanting him to be mauled by a pack of wild javelinas. He seemed to have toughness, intensity and good leadership ability. Those are certainly qualities that are important in every QB (maybe some of it can rub off on Romo). With Romo on the books for the foreseeable future, there's plenty of time to see whether McGee will develop into anything resembling a competent NFL QB. I'd rather take that approach than go all in with Matthew Stafford for $70 million. All in all, I have far less of a problem with this pick than I do the ridiculous waste of a 5th round pick on a kickoff specialist.

Ryan

April 28th, 2009 at 6:20 pm

Avatar

Hi Alex… I've seen your comments in a couple of other threads. Welcome to FJJ!

I must ask, what's a javelina? :-)

Luis

April 28th, 2009 at 8:23 pm

Avatar

It's a wild pig-like thing.

Why can't I get the damn picture to post?! Screw it. Just Google it. :)

Ryan

April 28th, 2009 at 8:33 pm

Avatar

Can't post pics directly in the comments, but you can link to them!

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4

Those things are ugly.

Alex

April 28th, 2009 at 9:47 pm

Avatar

Thanks for the welcome. Luis steered me to FJJ and I have enjoyed finding a place that shares my views on the Cowboys in general and more specifically, that Jerry Jones is running football operations like he's Captain Smith on the maiden voyage of the Titanic: full speed ahead to disaster. At least the Titanic had a band.

As has been detailed below, javelinas are a type of wild boar who can be very irritable and are found, among other places, in South Texas. I think it would be most unpleasant to be mauled by a wild pig that releases a strong odor while injuring you with razor sharp tusks.

Jeff

April 28th, 2009 at 9:55 pm

Avatar

Stephen McGee is a competitor, I will give him that. He's got a little cockyness issue though. I remember him entering the game against the Longhorns this past season and he got a little roughed-up by the Texas defense. He ran over to the Texas sideline and tried to take them all on. Seriously Stephen?