- Last Updated: 10:43 AM, December 5, 2012
- Posted: 2:11 AM, December 5, 2012
The train meanders north through Baltimore, through Wilmington, through Philadelphia and Trenton. A businessman sitting to my left is snoring so loud that they’re complaining in the Quiet Car, and we aren’t even in the Quiet Car. I’m too tired to sleep, which sounds like a Springsteen lyric but actually is 100 percent true.
So I click the Twitter app on my cell phone. There is a wonderful philosophical question awaiting me, from @jsim1288: “If you have 2QBs then U have none. If you have 3QBs what’s that mean??”
And that, my friends, is what we call a lay-up.
“You have Woody Johnson as an owner,” I tweet back.
And so it begins. Look, I understand the haunting questions surrounding the quarterback situation for the Jets are supposed to be life and death. I know this because suddenly everyone wants to talk to Nick Saban, Greg McElroy’s college coach, and usually you try to avoid such unpleasantness unless it’s a matter of, you know, life or death.
Who does Woody want? Who does the GM want? Who does Rex Ryan want? All important questions, until you take a step back and realize just how ridiculous, how surreal, how wonderfully comedic all of this is. OK, I’m sure Mark Sanchez doesn’t find this all terribly funny, it’s his job, his livelihood, all that.
Tim Tebow? He’s Tebow. Monday he took the time to call a high-school athlete in the Albany area who was in a devastating accident. You get the sense Tebow is genetically incapable of taking football out of its proper perspective, even now that he’s embroiled in that rarest of football circumstances: The Three-Headed Quarterback Controversy.
Top 3 three-quarterback controversies, all-time
1. Chicago Bears, 1948: Sid Luckman, Bobby Layne, Johnny Lujack: Yes, that would be two Hall of Famers (Luckman, Layne) and a Heisman winner. And it gets better: In 1949 and ’50, after Layne was exiled to the New York Bulldogs, Luckman and Lujack were joined by another Hall of Famer, a very young George Blanda.
2. Pittsburgh Steelers, 1972-74: Terry Bradshaw, Terry Hanratty, Joe Gilliam: Bradshaw was the Hall of Famer, but he had to unseat Hanratty and hold off Jefferson Street Joe at various times early in his career.
3. Los Angeles Rams, 1976: James Harris, Ron Jaworski, Pat Haden: Shack, Jaws and the guy who refuses to fire Lane Kiffin. And the next year, Haden traded in the two cool nicknames for Joe Namath and Vince Ferragamo.
And a few other worth mentioning for other reasons: 2010 Browns (Jake Delhomme, Colt McCoy, Seneca Wallace), 2006 Chiefs (Brodie Croyle, Tyler Thigpen, Damon Huard) and, while it’s fresh in our minds, the 2012 Cardinals (Kevin Kolb, John Skelton, Ryan Lindley). Or, as @phildemeo points out: “Fantasy football teams don’t even have a 3 QB controversy.”
Of course this trio needs a nickname. It’s New York City, after all, and it’s a three-headed battle involving two guys who have been on the cover of GQ and a third who has no doubt been a centerfold feature in Roll Tide Illustrated.
As the train chugs across the Jersey state line, I start the discussion with my pick: “The Weesome Threesome.” Happily, I can report that doesn’t even make the Top 10 (nor does the most-used choice: “Two and a Half Men”)
The Top 10 (with Twitter handles; I urge you to follow them all):
10. Legion of Gloom
9. The Three Musketears
8. Playboy, Churchboy and Waterboy
7. Three Men and a Maybe
6. Boyz II Meh
5. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
4. Faith, Hope and Mediocrity
3. Three And Out
1. You’re Once, Twice, Three Times Not Brady
With an honorable shout-out to @Erwin_Joe, who channeled Dr. Seuss with this one: “The three words that best describe them are as follows, and I quote: ‘Stink, stank, stunk!’ ”
* * *
The train inches into Metro Park Station. The ride is over. And so is the fun. Today someone will be named the starter, and we all will turn deathly serious again. Too bad. The Jets always are more fun as a sitcom than as a thriller.