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If Not Carr, Then Who?

As discussed below, I don't think David Carr will be donning the steel blue, battle red, and liberty white for a sixth season.  So who are the candidates to replace him as the starting quarterback for your Houston Texans?  Here's who I see as legitimate contenders:

  1.   Sage Rosenfels (HOU):  He didn't play much in his first year with the Texans in 2006, but looked great in camp, tremendous in relief against the Titans, and adequate in relief against the Jags.  Plus, Kubiak has raved about him.  Oh, and he's not David Carr.  So he's got that going for him, which is a huge bonus for about 98.7% of the dwindling Texans fanbase.  But is he a long-term solution at QB?  Probably not.  I do think, however, that he'd be a perfect candidate to drive the bus for a year or two while a young QB is developed.  Right now, he's my choice to take the snaps come September.
  2.   Jake Plummer (DEN):  This terrifies me, but it makes sense when you consider that Rick Smith and Gary Kubiak have shown a real affinity for bringing in ex-Broncos.   John McClain certainly seems to think Plummer is H-Town bound.  Plummer has obviously lost his starting job in Denver to Jay Cutler, and there's no way that the Broncos will pay him his current salary to be a back-up, even if he was so inclined.  Plummer experienced some success in Denver, and I think he'd be an upgrade over Carr.  But how much money would he require?  And is he really that much better than Rosenfels?  I'm not sure.  With that in mind, I'd err on the side of Sage over Jake the Snake if I was Rick Smith.
  3.   Matt Schaub (ATL):  I cannot see any way that this would happen.  Getting him would likely cost the Texans a first and third round draft pick, and there's no way the Texans can afford to give that up.  It's a nice name to toss around, but it's not realistic.  No way Schaub is here next year.
  4.   Kevin Kolb (University of Houston):  This is easily the most intriguing draft option to me.  There is some concern as to whether he can adjust to a system other than the spread offense Kolb used in high school and college, but everything I read tells me that the guy has all the tools.  At one time, I hoped the Texans could snatch him in the third round; I now think he won't last past the second round and could even slip into the late first after an impressive showing at the Combine, given how thin this draft is at QB.  So is he worth burning the second round pick on?  I'm not sure yet, but I don't think so right now.  This negative stance could be subject to change.
  5.   Drew Stanton (Michigan State):  Lots of questions about whether this guy will make it in the NFL.  Originally thought to be a first-rounder entering the season, no one seems to know where he'll go now.  If he's around in the third round, I'd have to think hard about it if I was Smith and/or Kubes.
  6.   Troy Smith (Ohio State):  All the ridiculous and inapplicable comparisons to Vince Young aside, he's an interesting possibility.  There are questions about his height and the flameout in the BCS Championship Game, but there's a lot to be said about having a winning pedigree.  I mean, look at all the success Ken Dorsey has had in the NFL.   Cough.  In all seriousness, I'd probably burn a flyer pick on him in the fourth or fifth round if he's still around.  There's no denying the dude is a heckuva athlete.
  7.   Brady Quinn (Notre Dame):  Please.  God.  No.  He is David Carr, Class of '07.  In other words, a pretty QB that'll look great on the cover of the weekly game program at Reliant.  But he had (reasonably) impressive college stats!  And he played under The Guy Who Molded Tom Brady!  And his tears, which flow readily when he thinks about puppies, rainbows, and/or the laughter of a child, have magical healing powers!  Right.  I think Quinn was easily the most overrated player in all of college football last season.  Remember Rick Mirer ?  Brady Quinn is Rick Mirer fifteen (15) years later.  If the Texans take him with the eighth pick in the Draft, I will lose it.  This cannot happen.  Hear that, Bob McNair?   DO NOT DRAFT BRADY QUINN.  I beg you.
So where does that leave us?  Well, nowhere just yet.  David Carr is still a Texan, so this is all speculation.  But if I was a betting man, I'd guess Sage Rosenfels is starting next year with a rookie QB as his back-up.  As long as said rookie's name is not Brady Quinn, that works for me.