NFL Loses Two Marquee Quarterbacks With Steelers’ And Saints’ Seasons Hang In The Balance

NFL loses top QBs early in the season NFL teams live and die with their quarterbacks. A good one who stays healthy generally means success. Life, however, has a...

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NFL loses top QBs early in the season

NFL teams live and die with their quarterbacks. A good one who stays healthy generally means success. Life, however, has a way of butting in and ruining the best of plans and seasons, especially when top QBs get hurt.

That’s where the Pittsburgh Steelers and New Orleans Saints find themselves on Tuesday. The Steelers will lose Ben Roethlisberger for the rest of the season as he undergoes elbow surgery. They are already 0-2 and two games behind the Baltimore Ravens in the ACC North.

The Saints, a popular preseason pick to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl, are looking at six to eight weeks without Drew Brees, who will likely need surgery to repair a thumb injury. The Saints are 1-1 and left Los Angeles, where they lost to the Rams (2-0) for Seattle, where they must play the Seahawks (2-0). That will not be an easy venue for backup Teddy Bridgewater to make his first start for the Saints.

The NFL’s heavy reliance on the passing game puts an extraordinary premium on QB play. Brees is like a coach on the field with an ability to read defenses and adjust. Roethlisberger has been a strong and study presence in the pocket who can extend plays by virtue of his size and ability to move warily away from pressure.

The breed has won one Super Bowl, Roethlisberger two. These are not easy people to replace. They command the huddle, they lead and they produce.

The onus now is on their backups. And the season hangs in the balance.

 
 
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman

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