Brooks has also, during the season, fumbled the ball where he simply dropped the ball with no one around. Usually these mistakes wind up taking the Saints from a position of imminent offensive scoring to a position of having points scored against them. And lest my criticism of Brooks be deemed incomplete, he also tends to have stupid interceptions (which also wind up resulting in having points scored against the Saints). I would love to know how many points Brooks’ mistakes have cost the Saints.
If you look at Brooks’ overall statistics it’s true that he gets a lot of yards passing; hey, the Saints are 3rd in the league in 3rd down conversions. But, statistics are often misleading. If you watched every Saints game this season then you know that Brooks is an amazingly talented athlete (which the statistics corroborate), but you’d also know that he makes some amazingly bone-headed plays.
The Saints are having a really poor season. But their problem isn’t Brooks; it’s the coaching. Haslett looks tough, but he’s not willing to make the tough decision to bench Brooks. If the point of coaching is to reward good behavior and punish undesirable behavior then this is a no brainer. In football coaching you hear about the importance of teaching “fundamentals.” That’s because they are important (hence the name “fundamental”).
“Fundamentals” are things like blocking, tackling and holding on to the football. Which brings us to Brooks’ fundamental problem. It’s one thing to drop the ball when you are getting hit. It’s another thing to have it spontaneously fly out of your hand like you have a serious muscular disability. Brooks has two modes: (a) extremely talented and (b) worthless. His fumbling and poor pass decisions occur often enough to make him, overall, a very mediocre quarterback. Only a poor coach would fail to recognize this and fail to take some decisive action. The Saints have a poor coach and they don’t deserve to go to the playoffs; in fact, they don’t even deserve to have a mathematical possibility of reaching the playoffs.
Update [Fourth Quarter] Brooks, who had 3 fumbles in the game (2 lost) just fumbled again in the red-zone, foregoing a certain scoring opportunity. I’ve decided that I’m not going to pull for teams that have great players and bad coaching. I’m pulling for teams that have good coaches. So I’m thinking of pulling for Tampa Bay, except they have Warren Sapp. I don’t like pulling for teams with loud-mouth blowhards (even if they are talented). If the Saints and Tampa Bay would trade Duece McCallister and Warren Sapp then I could root for the right team: Tampa Bay.[Final Score 14 – 7 Tampa Bay] Aaron Brooks is singlehandly responsible for this loss. If he had not had the ball spontaneously fly from his hand in the 2nd Quarter then the Saints would have scored at least 3 points, and probably Tampa Bay would not have scored 7 points. If he hadn’t fumbled the 4th time then the Saints would have scored at least 3 points for sure. You’ll never hear the press report the truth, but this one was solely the fault of Aaron Brooks. Worthless, worthless, worthless…