Five Questions With: Jack Burns

No one in town will have a bigger role in deciding the most controversial topic in Washington than the Redskins' quarterbacks coach. And Jack Burns provided us with his mini-scouting report on Patrick Ramsey and Mark Brunell.

Q: What stands out with Mark?

A: Mark is a real smart young man, very bright and he's been through a lot of situations. He has a lot of experience and that shows up in his play. He's very resilient -- he won't let one play affect the next play. He has a real good mental makeup and his radiator doesn't get overheated. He's very level and very sound in his thought process and very comfortable with the audible game at the line of scrimmage, which comes from his experience. He has a great outlook about coming to work and still has enthusiasm for the game. Some guys as they get into their 30s lose some of that. But he really enjoys playing and that stands out to me.

Q: How do quarterbacks compensate for their game as the arm strength diminishes?

A: Their instincts get keener and their anticipation gets quicker because their compensating for their lack of velocity. Most quarterbacks become better pitchers with age. I talk to them all the time about Greg Maddux. He's one of my favorite all-time pitchers. He only has an 88 mile an hour fastball and he'll win 300 games. He's a great pitcher and has great ball placement.

Q: Where do you see Mark's competitiveness?

A: Your right guard may whiff and a blitz may come or a stunt and I see him battle and move and slide to get to a throwing lane to salvage things and make it work. I see the competitive side in that respect, much more so than in others I've seen throughout the years. Mark's arm, when he sticks his feet in and cranks it up, is extremely live. He can make all the throws. He's not limited and he has real good legs and that's what helps him. He still has good mobility and is very healthy, his knees are in good shape. We really like what we've seen out of Mark.

Q: Patrick has that 95 mile an hour fastball, does he still need to add a changeup?

A: Patrick does a great job and he can make the outstanding throw, the 50-yard throw on a rope that outexecutes the defense down the field, which most guys can't do. So he can hit the home run. A lot of guys can't. A lot are out there just Judy punching. Not him and we love that about him. It'x exciting to work with him and see him grow in our system. He gets more comfortable every time he takes a snap. His upside is just tremendous.

Q: How are his eyes in terms of finding guys down field?

A: He has good eyes as far as being able to read things. He can look at throwing windows and know if he has a chance to win it or not. He has a good feel for the passing game and has good natural instincts. He's able to make good decisions and see if something is clogged up. His decision making is good. As he gets more comfortable with your system it'll become better. Last year he got hit some, got hit a lot. Anyone who gets hit a lot it makes you start looking around and holding onto the ball. We're trying to work with all our quarterbacks on that.


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