Q&A for MNF

Joe Theismann takes a look at the MNF matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Carolina Panthers.

Updated: November 13, 2006, 3:32 PM ET
By Joe Theismann | ESPN Insider
Editor's note: "Monday Night Football" analyst Joe Theismann answers a few questions about the MNF matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Carolina Panthers.

Is Bruce Gradkowski the QB of the future for the Bucs?

It certainly looks that way. I've been quite impressed with the way Gradkowski handles himself. He is engaging and enthusiastic, and he has a passion for the game of football. Gradkowski has a lot of confidence in himself, but he is smart enough to know that he still has a lot to learn in this league. He's a perfect protégé for coach Jon Gruden and could eventually turn into another Rich Gannon for Gruden. Gannon, of course, was like a mini-Gruden on the field and in practice. He made the decisions that Gruden would've made at all times and flourished under Gruden's tutelage.

I can see the same thing happening with Gradkowski because he has that same type of intensity, even though his is a little more subtle than Gannon's. Gradkowski is a sixth-round draft choice who has had to fight to get where he is, and that has steeled him. As Gannon did, Gradkowski cares only about winning and lets the tongue-lashings Gruden is prone to give just roll off his back.


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Joe Theismann

Football analyst
Former college and pro football star Joe Theismann has served as an analyst for ESPN's Sunday Night Football since 1988. He also is frequently heard on ESPN Radio, regularly contributes to ESPN.com and has contributed to the NFL Draft.