Arizona Cardinals: Will Drew Stanton Start at QB?

By Ryan Heckman
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

If you had to pick out the absolute worst aspect of any position on any team in the entire NFL last year, what would you pick? I’m talking about just down-right god awful, embarrassing, sick to your stomach when you watched it type play. Just one thing.

I have a feeling the Arizona Cardinals’ quarterback play would be in the top five of everyone’s list. Of course, the offensive line of the Cardinals didn’t help much. However, all three quarterbacks played pretty awful most of the year.

Going into next season, the Cardinals seem to have several options. Yet, none of them may be what they’re looking for if they want to win.

Kevin Kolb was paid a pretty penny to join Arizona a couple years ago, but has failed to live up to expectations. John Skelton played less than stellar when Kolb was either injured or benched the past two seasons. Last year, rookie Ryan Lindley came on as a serviceable third string and even started at some point when all else seemed to fail.

This year, the Cardinals have a new face on the roster who many are clamoring to get an opportunity to start. Drew Stanton, entering his seventh season as a pro, hasn’t played in an NFL game since being with the Detroit Lions in 2012. Last season, he spent the year backing up rookie Andrew Luck with the Indianapolis Colts.

New head coach Bruce Arians seems to be quite confident in Stanton, as he said last week that he has all the confidence in him and that he has seen quite a bit of improvement in his play. Arians also said that he’s not a “two quarterback guy.” These statements should prove telling as far as Stanton’s status is concerned.

Over the years, Stanton has shown flashes of being able to play well as a starting quarterback but has simply never been given the true chance. In the combine, he had one of the strongest arms being able to chuck a football 60 yards from his knees. This in particular is a great sign for wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, who may have been thinking recently that he’d like a quarterback who could hit the broad side of a barn.

If I’m Arians, I take the chance on Stanton. Cardinal fans cannot afford to endure watching another season like last year. With the coaching better than it was over the past few years (theoretically) and a weapon like Fitzgerald, Stanton has the tools necessary to put some points on the board.


Ryan Heckman is a Minnesota Timberwolves writer and NFL contributor for Follow him on Twitter, “Like” him on Facebook, or add him to your network on Google+

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