Going into training camp, the Arizona Cardinals had a quarterback controversy. Who was going to start week one against the Seattle Seahawks? Former head coach Ken Whisenhunt made the decision to go with QB John Skelton and it is a decision that ultimately cost him his job. He is lucky Skelton was hurt before the game ended or he may have lost it a lot sooner.
The new head coach, whoever President Michael Bidwell chooses, cannot make that mistake. In my opinion, there was never a controversy. QB Kevin Kolb was always the best option. The Cardinals cannot let injuries guide their decision making process, but they must do a better job preparing for them. The new head coach needs to announce Kolb as the starter from day one and let the rest of the quarterbacks compete for the emergency quarterback role. They need to bring in a veteran to back up Kolb.
The rest of the quarterbacks should not include Skelton. He is an experiment gone wrong and the Cardinals need to part ways with him, so his preseason play does not temp a coach into starting him when the real games start. I knew another guy who played well in August, but couldn’t get the job done in September. His name was Ryan Leaf. His NFL career is widely considered the biggest disappointment in history.
The Cardinals need to part ways with a lot of their offense that is not getting the job done. Failure is not an option and, for most of the players on the offense, it was for most of the season. Here is a quick list of players that should not get a chance to compete and should be released or traded before training camp begins:
T D’Anthony Batiste
RB Beanie Wells (traded)
QB John Skelton (Check out his Offensive Grades)
QB Ryan Lindley
OL Scott Wedige
These players, with exception of Wedige, underperformed all year long or expressed interest in playing elsewhere (Wells). Wedige was a mid-season signing and should not be the caliber player the Cardinals want on their team. I even thought about putting WR Early Doucet on this list, but he is still young and can fix the problems he had this season in a short period of time. Lindley is also young, but from what I saw from him, he will not start for any NFL team throughout the course of his career. Having him as a backup is not much of an option.
The Cardinals got out of their team mentality as soon as they gave up on their quarterback. If the team is not behind the man under center, it is not a team at all. Just look at what happened to the New York Jets. The Cardinals can compete right now. They are not in a rebuilding process, they are just regrouping.
Follow Kase Brammer on Twitter @KBlive33