There's been a lot of talk about David Garrard and Blaine Gabbert. That's going to happen when a team hasn't had a winning season since 2007 and drfats a quarterback in the Top 10. Personally, I would just release David Garrard and get the process underway with Blaine Gabbert, but that's because I feel like you should just play your quarterback, especially if they're a top 10 pick. I don't buy the whole "ruined confidence" argument. I believe, and have been told by people in the NFL, if you're worried about breaking a players confidence in their rookie season you didn't do the proper pre-draft work and likely picked the wrong guy.
I don't think the Jaguars are going to release Garrard, however. It's possible, but highly unlikely. With that being said, I don't think David Garrard plays the entire season, either. I think Blaine Gabbert will play by the bye week (week 9), if not earlier. Which... brings me to the title of the post. David Garrard is due a base salary of $7.975 million (I believe the total hit is around $9 million) if he's on the roster in 2011. Since it looks like the Jaguars plan to start the season with Garrard, why not ask him to take a paycut?
Part of the reasoning some fans have with releasing Garrard and going with Gabbert is it saves the team from paying someone who could be a back up for half the season around $8 million to sit on the bench. Despite the fact that the team has the cap room to eat that kind of money, it doesn't mean they should or want to. Wayne Weaver's still got to stroke the check and I'm not sure he's going to be happy stroking that check if Garrard is on the bench 8+ games.
For that reason and given the fact it looks like the team is going to roll with Garrard, I would ask David Garrard to take a paycut. I'd ask him to reduce his salary by roughly 50%. This would put his base pay in-line with what Gabbert would be getting paid and much easier to swallow if/when Garrard is replaced. It would also make the prospect of potentially trading him (though still unlikely) early in the season, keeping the options open.
Would David Garrard take the pay cut or would he ask to be released?
That's the question.