The Arizona Cardinals and Kevin Kolb officially parted ways Friday after two disappointing seasons with the team. The move gives Kolb a chance to push the reset button, and he could be a fantasy football deep sleeper if he lands in the right spot.
In two injury-plagued seasons with the Cardinals, Kolb appeared in just 15 games. His propensity for injuries certainly hurt his value, as did his inconsistent play. In nine games in 2011, Kolb had just nine touchdowns to go along with eight interceptions and seven fumbles; bad offensive line play certainly didn’t help. He was off to a decent start last season, throwing for 1,169 yards with eight touchdowns and five turnovers in six games, which was good for a solid quarterback rating of 86.1. Unfortunately, his season came to an abrupt end after he suffered detached ribs and a sprained shoulder joint on Oct. 14.
Now presumably healthy as a free agent, Kolb will likely get one more shot to prove his worth. After the two injury-filled seasons, Kolb is going to have to settle somewhere for cheap, and as of Friday the rumors were that the New York Jets were his hottest suitors.
With the Jets, Kolb would have a legitimate shot to start. Mark Sanchez is coming off a dreadful season and David Garrard is David Garrard. Kolb could come in and prove that he is healthy and worthy of a starting spot. If he does earn the gig, he will once again have to be alert behind an offensive line that struggled in pass protection last season. He would, however, be reunited with offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, whom Kolb developed under in Philadelphia from 2007-2010. He is a great fit for Mornhinweg’s West Coast Offense and will also have a solid receiving threat out of the backfield with the addition of Mike Goodson. A healthy Santonio Holmes would also help as well to go along with a burgeoning Jeremy Kerley. Kolb’s mobility is also underrated as he ran for 100 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries in just six games last year.
While all of that is well and good, the bottom line is that Kolb is still a long way away from being not only a starter in the NFL, but a legitimate fantasy option as well. He should not be drafted in any leagues until he does win the job and prove to be healthy. Even after that, he is no better than a low-end QB2 to start the season, but the potential for value is there. While a lot has to go his way, Kolb’s career isn’t over just yet.