It might be that at the time of the loss of the Stargazer, Picard was a virtual nobody, and now carried the stigma of having lost his ship as well. However, he would then go on to command two other vessels in glorious adventures and triumphant military campaigns, scoring diplomatic victories and scientific breakthroughs left and right, and this is what would earn him the command of the Federation Flagship in 2363.
Won't work. There's never been any hint that Picard commanded any ships between the Stargazer
and the Enterprise
. That's why I had to structure The Buried Age
in such a way that the only ship command he had in those 9 years was classified. And in "All Good Things," in the past segments when Picard was acting in a way that seemed erratic to the crew, Worf asked, "Are you certain this is the same man who commanded the Stargazer
?" That makes it pretty explicit that Picard's command of the Stargazer
was the basis of his reputation as a worthy captain.