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Ian Book: What Payton, Polian, Kelly, and Mora said about the Saints Quarterback

What Sean Payton, Bill Polian, Brian Kelly, and Jim Mora, Jr. had to say about the New Orleans Saints drafting Ian Book at quarterback.

What Sean Payton, Bill Polian, Brian Kelly, and Jim Mora, Jr. had to say about the New Orleans Saints drafting Ian Book at quarterback was intriguing and insightful.  

So, what's the Book on Ian Book?

Book on Ian Book

What was the hidden trail that led to the New Orleans Saints drafting Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book?

Read between the lines and follow the breadcrumbs.

Ian Book is now a Saints quarterback. Does he have a legitimate shot at earning a starting role in New Orleans?  

The odds are slim.  

Nonetheless, there's still a chance.

So, what's the Book on Book?

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Earlier this week on on SiriusXM NFL Radio, former NFL executive Bill Polian called Book a "Stone Winner!" 

Polian's son is an assistant coach with Notre Dame - so some insider scoop here.

Polian said, "Book was not expected to challenge for the starting job at quarterback three years ago. I'm not sure he was in their No. 1 plans as a backup." 

He asserted, "they inserted him into the lineup, and it's been straight-up ever since."


Brian Kelly noticed a winner at quarterback with Book. Book had a record of 30 wins to 5 losses as a starter for the Fighting Irish.

Kelley drew the comparison of Ian Book to Drew Brees at the Notre Dame Pro Day.

"Drew Brees kind of settles it.  And Drew Brees kind of settles it.  The best you know Drew Brees is the similar height.  Drew Brees, what he did in college was prolific, but he did it with accuracy.  So I think you start with the quarterback needs to be accurate, putting the ball on those guys that can make plays," said Kelly.

Kelley kept praising his pupil, "Now, he has the athletic abilities that he can keep plays alive...But again, I think accuracy. The arm strength, and then the ability to keep plays alive and doing those things naturally and not just, you know, getting this guy moving all over the place."


Did Sean Payton draft Book to ride the bench? No. 

I expect Payton will test his young player often and early in training camp.

On drafting Ian Book, Payton shared, "Yeah, so look, we spent a lot of time with him. The first thing you see is a guy that has won a lot of games. He's someone that I think is a good foot athlete. (A) Real good competitor, we liked a lot. He's played in big games, played at a high level." 

  1. Good foot athlete
  2. Real good competitor.
  3. Played in big games.
  4. Played at a high level.

These are key attributes for an NFL quarterback to possess.  Conversely, Book doesn't measure up to the New Orleans Saints' "WISH" drafting formula of Weight, Intelligence, Size, and Height.   

The only element missing is height and size is questionable.  

Ian Book may not be a New Orleans Saints prototypical player - on the other hand, Ian Book is a Sean Payton type of football player.


On the Bayou Blitz, Jim Mora, Jr. told Bob Rose and me that Sean Payton should consider Ian Book in the third round of the draft.   

"No. 1, he's a winner. He's the winningest quarterback in Notre Dame's history.  No. 2, he has that mobility that Sean likes." 

Sean Payton


Payton threw media off the scent at the Zurich Classic in a pump fake and said, "I don't think it's a must position [quarterback]. We got really good players [Winston and Hill] in the building."  

He told Dan Patrick, "the kid at Notre Dame is pretty scrappy." Scrappy? Much like he was at Eastern Illinois and as a "scab" Chicago Bears quarterback during the 1982 NFL strike.

This week, Payton told NFL Network's Rich Eisen Book was competitive in big games.  

"He's a winner. And, there were just enough good things that kept coming up what you watch him play...winningest quarterback at Notre Dame history...that's the function of that position [quarterback] is to lead your team to scores, find a way to win games, he's a pretty impressive guy.

Sean Payton on The Rich Eisen Show

The breadcrumbs were dropping everywhere - Ian Book is a Sean Payton type of guy.  

Like Payton and Brees, Book is vertically challenged by the standards of a prototypical NFL quarterback. Yet, he's tenacious and breaks molds.

Book has the grit to challenge to become a starter in New Orleans. Barring injuries this season, Book's quest will have to wait at least a year.

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