Ryan Lindley, John Skelton, Kevin Kolb: A Closer Look at the Cardinals' Messy Quarterback Situation

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Just when you thought it couldn’t get worse for the Cardinals at quarterback, they turned to 6th rounder Ryan Lindley. You could of course give Ken Whisenhunt the benefit of the doubt on the switch, and argue that something had to be done to shake up the Cardinals offense and what better way to get your message across than making a change at quarterback. Or not. At least the mistake has been acknowledged by Whisenhunt, and they are going back to John Skelton this week in Seattle. Never thought “the Cards are starting Skelton” could sound so good.

In his two and a half--ish games as the Cardinals quarterback saying Lindley was ineffective, is painfully generous. He was worse than Skelton in nearly every category worth counting based on their sample sizes of play. In little over half as many attempts as Skelton, he matched him with 5 interceptions. He posted a QBR of 6.8 and a rating of 40.4, both numbers are nothing short of awful. His completion percentage of 48.5 another slice of humble pie for himself and Whisenhunt, and how about the fact that he couldn’t even get a single touchdown? I suppose anyone would have a hard time scoring with all world receiver Larry Fitz... nevermind.

Now for the all too welcome return to mediocrity, John Skelton. Although he couldn’t get a single win this season, or at least finish a game victorious (see week one against Seattle) he could at the very least look like something that resembled an NFL quarterback. Before he was pulled in the Cardinals game against Atlanta, he was near dead last in almost every statistical category for a quarterback who’d started at least four games. That wasn’t what lost him his job though.

Skelton’s biggest downfall this season, has been his inability to finish drives. Given amazing field position, and options aplenty to throw to, somehow he never seemed to throw touchdowns. Field goal, after field goal, after field goal, and eventually Whisenhunt lost his patience with the young gunslinger. He was missing wide open receivers in the end zone, and could never find open receivers on third down. He was playing like a backup, not the starting quarterback they had hoped for after handing him the reins following the pre-season. Hopefully with Kevin Kolb’s return on the horizon, and the season being lost and then some, he plays like he has nothing to lose. Because clearly, just trying to get by, isn’t going to cut it.