Neither quarterback in Super Bowl XLVII will win any Mr. Universe competition. Baltimore’s Joe Flacco boasts the muscle tone of an insurance salesman. San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick looks more like a surfer. Both are tall and gangly and somewhat awkward, built more like cyclists than football players.
Yet these quarterbacks also possess two of the strongest arms in the N.F.L., two million-dollar limbs that draw hyperbolic comparisons to cannons and shotguns and catapults, basically anything that shoots objects really far or really fast.
The matchup of two physically unimposing players who are also so physically gifted underscores important matters in regard to throwing mechanics and the term “arm strength.” The latter is something of a misnomer; arm strength has little to do with the size of a quarterback’s biceps or the actual strength of the arm. The former involves the entire body and starts not with the arm but with the feet.
Case in point: Flacco. Case in point, Part 2: Kaepernick.