Nationals Baseball: Bored Monday post

Monday, February 04, 2013

Bored Monday post

I  don't remember the term "elite quarterback" used alot growing up, so I wanted to track down when exactly it started.  Of course that is kind of hard to do, but Harper of 12 hours ago didn't know that.

Here's a college reference in 2001. Notice the word doesn't even make it into the column. It's only in the title. In 2003, in the NFL, the same thing. Here's another from 2004. Can you imagine in 2013 a column about Brady getting to be seen as one of the best QBs in the NFL and the word "elite" not being used?  The copy editor would send it back for that glaring omission.

Near as I can tell it probably came up thorugh the college ranks thanks in no small part to Nike's Elite 11 camp.  But wherever it came from, it's certainly got a grasp on our group mindthink.

That first spike in "elite QB"* searches corresponds to that NYT article about the Elite 11. That's probably not a coincidence. The next year you get 2 months of big searches around the same time - then 3, then 4, and then it's all over.  It's done.  Elite QB gives the sports pundits something to blabber about so it is here to stay. 

*this search got me better results than "elite quarterback" or "elite NFL QB" etc etc.

Baseball tomorrow


cass said...

It seems to be a similar concept to baseball's "ace" or "true number one" starting pitchers.

Harper said...

I like to think of "True #1" pitchers as any guy who can dependably be in the Top 30. That makes it less arbitrary - enough "true #1s" for each team to have one. Makes sense. Though if you take it to be something else you are definitely thinking like "elite QB"

BlueLoneWolf said...

Blasted Ratbirds.

Well, it's officially 'waiting for baseball season' season now. Time for official roster previews and predictions?

Anonymous said...

well i like pie

DezoPenguin said...

Brad Peacock just got flipped to the Astros with Chris Carter in the Jed Lowrie deal. That's sort of news, in the "Whatever happened to that guy who used to be on our team?" category.

Anonymous said...

I have never in my life seen a professional writer make so many repeated grammatical errors. I assume that bloggers will make more than reporters because most wear both the writer and editor hats, but even ESPN must have standards in this regard. You make the same ones again and again, as if no one has brought it to your attention. These are mistakes we are broken of in elementary school. Some stumble upon them again in later life, but those people aren't paid to write for a living.

Mike Rizzo is a baseball man, and if he wants to say "we'll see where he's at." repeatedly we can forgive his ignorance, even though that sentence is only a distant cousin to the english language. A writer should know better than to end any sentence with the word "at" because it is then no longer a sentence at all.

And "Alot" is, as far as I know, only an Indian city and certainly not a word in the english language. Combat these errors. It is very important.

Harper said...

BLW - We're got FOREVER before that. We've entered the 2-month tease.

Anon #1 - I like pie too. Much better than cake. But I'm a fruit guy.

DP - Yeah I saw that. On one hand, he'll definitely get his chance to pitch. On the other - no playoffs anytime soon. I guess you'd take it though.He's young enough that if he can pitch he can make his way to a better team.

Anon #2 - Lucky you, you still haven't seen a professional writer disappoint you so much grammatically. I'm not paid to do this and I only put in a limited effort into correcting my grammar. Write it - a quick re-read (mostly for clarity of points) - then out it goes. This is a hobby for me, not a profession.

I'd also argue that Mike Rizzo is guilty of poor phrasing, but that's still a sentence. Fighting for the "don't end a sentence with a preposition" rule is a losing proposition.

Mythical Monkey said...

I was thinking about the phrase "elite quarterback" while walking the dog yesterday -- if that ongoing debate isn't one of the most meaningless and cliched in current sports talk circles, I'd like to know what the others are.

There are three questions an NFL franchise likely asks itself with regard to its quarterback -- (1) does this guy have any real competition on the roster for the job (and is it worth drafting, trading or signing someone else); (2) can we win the Super Bowl with him at QB; and (3) can we afford to pay him what it would cost to keep him in a free agency year.

You look at the NFL and something like half the teams out there would, rightly or wrongly, answer yes to all three of those questions. But if half the quarterbacks in the NFL are entrenched in their jobs and have the apparent talent to win it all, given the right supporting cast, then what does "elite" really mean? Half of anything can't be elite.

And if the number 15 guy on the list is just as capable of winning the Super Bowl as the number 1 guy (and if the number 1 guy can't win it because his defense is lousy or he has no running game or the refs blew a call), then what difference does the designation "elite" mean anyway?

While the question "Manning or Brady" is endlessly fascinating to the guys on PTI, it isn't of much relevance to the Broncos or Patriots, except on a given Sunday afternoon when they're playing each other. And the outcome of that game is as likely to hinge on something else as it is on the play of the quarterbacks.

As you point out, it's just another example of lazy, meaningless groupthink jibber jabber.

cass said...

There is absolutely nothing wrong with ending a sentence with a preposition. It is perfectly grammatical.

Likewise, "alot" is simply a misspelling, since the standard spelling is "a lot". Nothing ungrammatical, though, and perfectly acceptible when spelled correctly.

Jim Waters said...

To Anonymous: thanks for the grammer lesson, I really do appreciate all the help I can get. But, this is a blog. So lighten up.

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