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Raiders QB Terrelle Pryor: 'I'm not planning to be the backup'

By Will Brinson | NFL Writer
Pryor is confident in his abilities. (Getty Images)

Once upon a time, Terrelle Pryor considered quitting football. Then the Raiders underwent a slew of changes after the passing of Al Davis and Pryor became recommitted thanks to a "clean slate" in Oakland.

And Pryor doesn't want anyone scribbling about the notion that he might be a backup on said slate either -- he told Steve Corkran of the Contra Costa Times that he's "not planning to be a backup" even if he concedes that Carson Palmer is the incumbent in Oaktown.

"Carson is the starter and he's going to be the starter. But I don't put myself as I'm going to be backup," Pryor said. "I mean, I don't sit around saying, 'I want to be a backup, that's what I want to be.' That's not how I operate. That's not how I want to be. I'm going to work to play. And Carson's always played well and always will. Whenever the opportunity comes for me to play, I'll play.

"But I'm not planning to be a backup. Get that correct."

What's actually correct is Pryor's attitude -- though the comment about being a backup is a bit assertive for a guy who doesn't have a legit shot to start in 2012, it would be bad if Pryor didn't want to be the starter. And it would be more indicative of a guy who wasn't passionate about football than it would a guy who wants to compete on the field.

Pryor was the ultimate Davis pick when the Raiders decided to nab him in the supplemental draft before 2011. He's an unrefined athlete who needs to, ironically, get the Carson Palmer treatment and kick it on the bench for a while before potentially developing into an NFL starter.

The Raiders gave up way to much in order to land Palmer for them to even consider going in another direction. But if Pryor can beat out fellow backup Matt Leinart for the No. 2 spot on the depth chart, it would be an impressive step forward and make him a lot more interesting as a quarterback prospect moving forward.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Will Brinson on Twitter here: @willbrinson.
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