The QB: The Making of Modern Quarterbacks by Bruce Feldman
What is the major difference between those QB’s who make it in the League and those who fall by the wayside? Is it skill or leadership, poise or strength? Bruce Feldman, in his new book The QB seeks to answer what makes a quarterback not only thrive in the NFL but what makes him great. This book began as Feldman heard the curious meanderings about quarterbacks by former NFL QB Trent Dilfer. Trent is well-known for his deft way of understanding the ins and out of quarterbacking in a league filled with so-called experts (8).
Starting with the Elite 11, a program designed to seek out the best high school quarterbacks, Feldman looks at how Dilfer and others have helped players with more than just the right technique for a perfect spiral (17). The problem with some private enterprises designed to help aspiring quarterbacks is the lack of real work that translates beyond high school, through college and into the Pros (23). Feldman gets into the work that Johnny Football went through at A&M by looking at his work with George Whitfield, a Southern California quarterback based coach. After spending some time with Johnny Whitfield, harping on him for his throwing motion and where he held the ball, Johnny went back to try to win the spot on A&M’s squad (50-51). More interesting, Paul Manziel, Johnny’s Dad was constantly forecasting what he thought his son was going to do, in tones much like prophecy.
Analyzing the way Dilfer looks at Elite 11, Feldman brings out Dilfer’s DQ, Dude Qualities that is both amusing but very telling of the intangibles of quarterback play. These dude qualities are based upon things like competitiveness, moxie, grit, and resilience. Further, quarterbacks who set the climate for the locker room rather than reacting as a challenge comes up are what Dilfer looks for as the next best recruits. Interestingly enough, Dilfer seems to shy away from five-star recruits in hopes of landing some recruits who are more gritty or possess leadership qualities that others haven’t developed.
I enjoyed this book but I really felt it was more of a survey of private quarterback gurus or coaches who want to make a name for themselves.
Thanks to Blogging for Books for the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.