Waiting To See At QB

all parties know that better not be the case again Monday night. 

Otherwise, especially from a fandom known to jump to conclusions when it comes to quarterbacks - prematurely good or bad - there will be wide-spread panic. 

Hey, already someone asked Parcells here at one of his press conferences this week, how important did he think it was for "your team to score a touchdown?" 

Parcells politely deflected the question by saying, "On the degree of importance, I don't know where I'd put that," but did become a tad perturbed when he was told "but other teams score touchdowns in preseason games." 

"That's a revelation," Parcells said. 

But see, that's the kind of stuff that happens, and somehow no matter how your offensive line plays or your wide receivers, the focus falls right back on the quarterbacks. C'mon, there were people who thought Troy Aikman didn't have what it takes. 

(Note: This column was interrupted at this point for Parcells' daily press conference, which takes place at 11:30 a.m. (PDT) daily, which is important since Parcells then kind of said what I've been trying to say after I had already said it. Follow along.) 

So when Parcells was asked Thursday at River Ridge where he thought he team was this late into training camp, he mentioned that he "didn't really know," that the team is improved at cornerback, but that he still has concerns at safety, with the depth at outside linebacker and the continuity of the offensive line. 

And he finished by saying, and get ready for this, "and, honestly, I need to see more out of the quarterback position, too." 

That's what I was talking about. Now when he said that, it was as if someone had lit a pack of firecrackers. Pop, pop, pop came the questions, Parcells peppered about that most important position on the team. 

Now he tried to explain what he meant; that it wasn't a direct criticism of Bledsoe or a lack of faith in his backups. He talked of installation, and how now that everything is in, he expects the quarterbacks to perform at a higher level. 

"I just need more consistency from the position," Parcells said. "I'm not trying to stir up anything here. I'm trying to tell you the truth. So take it for what I said, not for what you think is a good story." 

See there, this already was a "good" story, if I can say so myself. But now . . . . 

Parcells said he needs to get his offense coordinated, and that meant every position on the offense and every phase since they have spent the majority of camp on installation. Now is time to refine. Makes sense. 

But he was continually brought back to the quarterback, and when asked if he was referring more to his backups when he said he needed more consistency from the position, Parcells became exasperated. 

"I'm talking about the whole . . . aw, I wish I had never said it now," Parcells said. "Write what you want, but I'm going to correct you if it's wrong." 

OK, so let's be careful here so he doesn't take a red pen to all this. But remember, this was the impression before camp started about the quarterback position - all three guys - and the impression after 22 days of training camp, but most importantly, the impression before his press conference. 

To further clarify his stance on the quarterbacks, Parcells would finish with: "In the meantime, I'm looking for improvement in a lot of areas offensively, and quarterback is one of them. Period. 

"I didn't say anybody's name, I said the entire position," Parcells continued when asked what he needed to see from Bledsoe, "and I explained to you a just minute ago what I hope to see. I hope to see refinement of the concepts, the principles and a little more efficiency in the execution. And I think the more practice we have on that, the better chance we have to get that." 

Sounds good, because that's what you and me want to see, too, especially at what has been that one position which just can't be problematic. 

Quarterback.   

MICK SHOTS

 
  After the press conference, when asked

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