Typically our fourth QB becomes a training camp casualty, but this year Lester Ricard is going to try to avoid that fate. He'll be a quarterback to watch at camp, and at 6-5 and 222 pounds, he won't be hard to miss.
Known as "Sparky" since childhood, Lester has the size and arm strength of a JaMarcus Russell clone, but unfortunately he hasn't shown the accuracy or consistency. Ricard had also initially enrolled at LSU in 2002 and was red-shirted as a freshman. In 2003, ironically the same time JaMarcus Russell arrived on campus, Lester decided to transfer to Tulane and was forced to sit out a year.
In 2004, Ricard won the quarterback job at Tulane and started the first 9 games before breaking his wrist in the Army game. It was a rocky start, but he was new to collegiate action as a starter. Lester and the team struggled in 2005, but gained some momentum in 2006 before a nagging shoulder injury impeded further progress.
Lester's size, mobility and strength are definitely positives. Combine that with the fact he has quick release and throws with an over-the-top delivery, and he becomes the alter-ego of the quarterback that some love and others love to hate. Ricard can thread a needle or get the pass through the tight spots.
Most of his snaps have been taken out of the shotgun. The fact that he is known to telegraphs throws, not poised under the rush and forces the ball into coverage reminds us of a backup we already have on the roster. Lester must improve his overall accuracy and pass placement to become a combination of all the positive traits of the quarterbacks on the roster, and to make that roster.
Lester Ricard: Does Sparky Have Enough?
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