Panthers quarterback Cam Newton is an NFL rookie. Redskins quarterback John Beck is in his fifth season in the league
Newton has already started more games this season than Beck has in his career.
Newton will have had six days to prepare for this start. Beck will have had 1,393 days, or approximately 199 weeks.
Newton has six weeks of game-tape for the Redskins defense to review, and Beck has 15 minutes at the end of the Eagles game.
Panthers head coach Ron Rivera tried to downplay the situation during his Washington media conference call on Wednesday.
“We’ll look at tape just to watch [Beck], to see what he does and what he does best,” he offerened. “Those are things that we as coaches have to see and tell the players. It’s not the players’ job to sit there and have to study this kid when he was coming out or when he was a rookie. It’s our job as coaches to give that information to them and then for them to see those things. We’ve got to present it to them.”
Safely assuming that preseason film is useless, Rivera has 7:40 of film to review on Beck during his time with the Redskins.
That should be some earth-shattering film study.
“Truthfully, you really don’t prepare as much for the individual as much as you prepare for what they do offensively,” Rivera admitted. “You prepare for the offense. You prepare for what they’re doing and you prepare for trying to eliminate those things. If you sit there and worry about who’s going to be the quarterback — guess what — they’re going to do the same things they do with each quarterback.”
Perhaps they make the same reads from the same formations, but Beck and Rex Grossman differ in demeanor and skill set. So what has Rivera seen?
“I think John Beck is a bit more of an athlete whereas Rex [Grossman] has a major league arm,” he said. “They’re both competitive guys and they both run the system.”
How well Beck is able to run the system vs. Carolina’s defense will factor heavily into Sunday’s game.