The quarterback competition may be on the verge of becoming a two-way battle. Many say that Allan Bridgford has slightly outperformed Zach Maynard, but Zach has had the disadvantage of taking many more reps against the ferocious first team defense. Though Bridgford has yet to receive a substantial portion of the first team reps, Jim McGill believes his execution and mastery of the playbook give him the edge over Maynard.
- If Mansion ends up being the third qb, it looks like a Maynard-Bridgford battle for the starting slot. Maynard brings starting FCS experience, having led Buffalo as a starter as a soph in 2009 before opting to transfer to Cal and join his brother, soph Keenan Allen, with the Bears. Maynard is a playmaker with his feet, whether on broken plays or by design. However, he's lacked the consistency you'd like to see in his passing game. Perhaps he's shaking off the rust of being out of pads for a year and it will come together for him in the last week of spring practice or in the fall. Tedford, Kiesau and Michalczik have been working on plays designed to take advantage of Maynard's running ability but whether or not that will be seen as a change of pace qb or starter remains to be seen.
- To my eye, if you name the starting qb based on on-the-field performance and ability to execute the playbook, Bridgford's clearly the guy. While on the shelf recuperating from rotator cuff surgery (now 100% healed), Bridgford dove into the playbook and learned it inside and out. This shows on the field, as he calmly goes through his progressions and keeps his eyes downfield, even when sidestepping pressure. His throws have been accurate and he hits receivers in stride instead of trying to drill it to where they are when the ball is released. Some, including Tedford with a brief mention, have noted that Bridgford's release seems to be a bit long, but until it affects his ability to deliver the ball where it's supposed to be, when it's supposed to be there, it's not a real matter of concern in my opinion.
After the jump we have more first-hand impressions from Saturday, Aaron Rodgers avoids the Madden Curse, and Monty's team earns a spot in ESPN's way-too-early 2012 NCAA Tournament projections.
- CalSportsDigest has a thorough set of impressions from Saturday's practice. Each unit gets coverage, though the offense is discussed at greatest depth.
- Aaron Rodgers has been eliminated from the competition to appear on the cover of Madden '11. Of course, Rodgers now avoids the Madden Curse.
- Avi breaks down the competition for the top spot at QB, with the positives and negatives from each candidate.
- This Saturday's open practice is moving from San Ramon Valley High School to Contra Costa College. The festivities will begin at noon.
- It hasn't even been a month since March Madness, but that didn't stop Lunardi from projecting the 2012 bracket. The Bears are a projected 8/9 seed next year.
- A 4-3 victory gave the 16th-ranked Bears a sweep over Washington.
- The Bears moved up a spot to 15th in this week's rankings.