What Can the Raiders Do to Help Matt Schaub Rebound in 2014?

Calling quarterback Matt Schaub’s 2013 season a down year would be like calling the atomic bomb a weapon of some destruction. Schaub had a year so putrid the team he pulled out of the basement seven years ago benched him in favor of undrafted rookie Case Keenum—so much for loyalty.

The Houston Texans shipped Schaub to the Oakland Raiders for a sixth-round draft pick and will go into the 2014 season with the quartet of Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tom Savage, T.J. Yates and Keenum competing for the starting job. It’s as if the Texans thought any quarterback would be better than Schaub, even if circumstances forced them to make the move.

As the immediate starter in Oakland, Schaub will try to revive a moribund franchise for the second time in his career, but this time he’ll also be trying to revive his own career. The Raiders have to do everything they can to help Schaub because few outside of Oakland are giving him a chance.


Lessons from History

Quarterbacks have rebounded from a bad seasons before, but there are others who never recover. Philip Rivers rebounded last season after a lackluster 2012 season, but Jake Delhomme’s disastrous 2009 season in Carolina was the end of the line for him even though he won the starting job in Cleveland the following year.

Like Schaub, Delhomme had led his team to a 12-4 record just a season before his collapse. The notable difference was that Delhomme was two years older than Schaub (34 vs. 32) when he had his bad year. Rivers was a year younger, but his bad year was actually part of a three-year decline.

Some people will try to convince you that once a quarterback declines like Schaub, he won’t rebound even when history suggests otherwise. Using adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A) from pro-football-reference.com, 65 seasons and 46 different quarterbacks were examined to debunk this myth.

ANY/A is...

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