Matt Leinart, Terrelle Pryor vie to be Raiders' backup


Training camp is finally almost here. They allow tackling there and everything. Around the League will count down the top 30 position battles to watch throughout the preseason.

No. 26. Raiders backup quarterback: Matt Leinart vs. Terrelle Pryor

Top 30 training camp position battles

No. 30: Seahawks running backs
No. 29: Packers No. 3 receiver
No. 28: Broncos backup running back
No. 27: Bengals cornerbacks
No. 26: Raiders backup quarterback
No. 25: Cardinals receiver
No. 24: Jets right tackle
No. 23: Jets linebacker
No. 22: Redskins running back
No. 21: Giants No. 3 receiver
No. 20: Patriots receiver
No. 19: Colts tight end
No. 18: Rams receivers
No. 17: Jaguars quarterbacks
No. 16: Bears wide receivers
No. 15: NFL safety battles
No. 14: Jaguars No. 2 receiver
No. 13: Bears left tackle
No. 12: Randy Moss vs. Father time
No. 11: Lions receivers
No. 10: Cardinals running back
No. 9: Ravens pass rusher
No. 8: Dolphins quarterback
No. 7: Buccaneers running back
No. 6: Steelers defensive end
No. 5: Dolphins wide receiver
No. 4: Cardinals quarterback
No. 3: The Oakland Raiders
No. 2: Titans quarterback
No. 1: Seahawks quarterback

• This is the only backup quarterback battle on our top 30 list. It's just too weird to ignore. These are two of the most polarizing college quarterbacks of the last decade, now adrift in the NFL.

• In one corner, we have Leinart. He's the heavy favorite because he's familiar with offensive coordinator Greg Knapp's scheme. Still, it's easy to forget that Leinart is coming off a broken collarbone. Leinart reportedly just was "getting it" in Houston before he got hurt, but this is a guy who has lost surprising battles in the past. (To Kurt Warner and ... Dan Orlovsky.)

• Pryor might have considered leaving football in 2011, but now he's said strongly he doesn't plan to be a backup. The Contra Costa Times believes Pryor has worked hard this offseason and has a legitimate chance to unseat Leinart. That would be a surprise.

• It's possible Pryor could be active on game days over Leinart because he occasionally can help on "Wildcat" plays. There has been talk of using Pryor's athleticism.

• No matter who loses this battle, we all win because you can poke fun of your resident USC or Ohio State fan. Because those fans bases aren't obnoxious at all.

Projected Winner: Leinart.