Breaking Down Why JaMarcus Russell Can Succeed in the NFL

It’s safe to say JaMarcus Russell blew his first chance in the NFL.

Russell, who was thought of as a safe, blue-chip prospect entering the 2007 NFL draft, ended up shocking everyone by doing nothing right in Oakland. Russell threw 18 touchdowns and 23 interceptions in 680 pass attempts with the Raiders, and he posted a repulsive 65.2 passer rating.

The former LSU star made mental gaffes and was inaccurate. Russell, who owns one of the strongest arms of all time, wasn’t able to complete enough passes, as evidenced by his miserable completion percentage (52.1 percent).

When he completed passes, not a lot happened. Russell averaged six yards per attempt in his three years, which is, well, horrible. His stats were terrible, and the Raiders were bad because of him. Russell’s record as a starter was an atrocious 7-18.

So, Russell could have done better in his first stint in the NFL. However, he may be getting a chance to redeem himself.

According to, Russell has garnered interest from a lot of teams. Russell went through a rigorous training program this offseason, and he simmered down to 265 pounds as a result. While Russell is still heavy, he’s not 315 pounds anymore.

Russell wants to sit behind a respected leader and learn at quarterback, and there are places where he can do that. The Denver Broncos and New England Patriots appear to be good fits, and places like Pittsburgh, New York and San Diego don’t seem like bad destinations either.

Peyton Manning and Tom Brady are game-changing quarterbacks, and neither will lose their job to Russell. However, Manning is 37 years old, and Brady is approaching the end of his career as well.

Having Russell ready as a backup and potentially a future starter wouldn’t be a bad plan of action.

For a team like San Diego, Russell could see the field without injury forcing him ...

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