Can the Arizona Cardinals compete with John Skelton starting?

By Kase Brammer

It’s official the Arizona Cardinals have announced John Skelton as their starting quarterback for week 1 of the 2012 NFL season. A decision made by the Cardinals because they believe it’s their best chance to compete.

But, with their problems on the offensive line and a defense that is mediocre at best, will they have a chance to compete with the San Francisco 49ers or Seattle Seahawks? Week one against the Seahawks will be a great test.

The Seahawks newly tenacious defense may give Skelton fits in the backfield and the secondary. He will have to exploit the middle of the field to win. If Skelton can find a hole in the Seahawks defense he has a chance to pick them apart. However, the way the Seahawks have played in the preseason it doesn’t look like Skelton or any part of the Cardinals team really has a chance.

The Cardinals offensive line and running backs will have to step up their game to give Skelton more time, so the passing lanes open up and he doesn’t spend all his time on his backside. A balanced attack should keep the Seahawks and the rest of the league guessing as they try to figure out what is coming next. Skelton’s Athleticism, or lack thereof, will not be enough, but as a team, the Cardinals will be able to compete.

One thing is for sure, the Arizona Cardinals will need to go to Larry Fitzgerald early and often or they will continue to waste the talent of one of the best receivers in the league. Skelton’s play will be the only thing keeping the Cardinals out of the NFC west cellar and ahead of the St. Louis Rams.

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