Even the greatest natural talents aren’t likely to wind up as star quarterbacks without someone who recognizes their potential and how best to develop it. In that regard, Bruce Arians, the head coach of the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, is a known master teacher who has played a hand in training Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Andrew Luck, and the Cardinals’ Carson Palmer. “The Quarterback Whisperer” reveals what Arians has learned during a 40-year coaching career about effectively playing football’s most important position, including the difference between passers and throwers. Passers, as he describes them, are quarterbacks who possess excellent mechanics and are so in sync with receivers that they release the ball before receivers get open. Throwers, on the other hand, wait until the receiver breaks open and then sling the ball in that direction.
Here’s an excerpt from The Quarterback Whisperer:
“Before the 2004 draft, when I was the wide receivers coach with the Steelers, I ranked the prominent quarterbacks who were about to come out of the collegiate ranks, from Eli Manning to Phillip Rivers to Ben Roethlisberger. In my judgment it was a no-brainer who the best NFL player of the three was going to be – Big Ben.
“At Miami (Ohio) University he was a very special player, showing that rare twin trait of avoiding onrushing linemen while simultaneously keeping his eyes downfield. Too often the so-called draft experts who have never coached or played a down in the NFL just focus on the physical traits of college quarterbacks. They ask questions such as: Does he have the prototypical size? Can he make all the necessary throws? Is he agile, quick afoot, fast? But I like to see if the guy can keep his eyes down the field in the midst of mounting chaos. Is he a leader and winner? In short, does he have grit? Ben checked off those boxes.”