Tag:Arizona Cardinals
Posted on: August 24, 2010 8:42 am
Edited on: August 24, 2010 11:43 am

Leinart's starting job is in jeopardy

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

After another subpar performance in what has been a career of subpar performances, people are questioning whether Arizona QB Matt Leinart’s starting job is in jeopardy. As Andy pointed out last night, Leinart was 4 for 6 for 28 yards against the Titans on Monday, and he led his team to a trio of three-and-out possessions.

Here’s Leinart’s response, as recorded by the Arizona Republic , and it’s part obvious and part … sorta … ridiculous.

"You want to move the ball better, obviously," Leinart said. "It falls on the quarterback. … You guys critique every play and think I'm not very good because we don't move the ball. I understand it falls on the quarterback. The game plan is small. I'm not worried about it. I know I need to play better."

I like that he thinks people think he’s not very good because he’s having a tough preseason. No, people think he’s not very good because he allowed Kurt Warner – true, possibly a future Hall of Famer, but he was an old future Hall of Famer in Arizona – to take his job in the 2008 preseason and because he’s completed 57 percent of his passes for 14 touchdowns and 20 interceptions in his career.

And because if Warner wanted to play another season instead of retiring, Leinart, once again, would be relegated to the bench.

That being said, I don’t know how the Cardinals organization could give the ball to backup Derek Anderson, who was absolutely horrendous last year for a bad Cleveland Browns squad.

Listen, I know Anderson was playing in a system that didn’t highlight his strengths – mainly his big arm – but if Leinart can’t keep the starting job that was thought to be his, I’d say there’s no hope Leinart will ever be a starting quarterback in this league.

"I think we had opportunities from all of our quarterbacks to make plays tonight," Whisenhunt said after the game, intimating that his quarterbacks didn’t actually make those plays. "I'm not panicked about it. It's a process you have to go through."

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Posted on: August 23, 2010 10:09 pm

Is Leinart really The Guy in Arizona?

Posted by Andy Benoit

Actions speak louder than words. This in mind, should we really believe the Cardinals when they say that Matt Leinart is their starting quarterback? Yes, Leinart started against the Titans Monday night. But Derek Anderson took over early in the second quarter. The Titans starting defense played through the second quarter; more importantly, so did the Cardinals starting offense. Thus, Ken Whisenhunt was deliberately getting Anderson reps with the first unit.

In the first half (i.e. playing with and against starters), Leinart was an unimpressive 4/6 for 28 yards. He quarterbacked three three-and-outs. Anderson was 9/16 for 98 yards with a small handful of costly inaccurate throws.

What stood out no matter which quarterback was under center was how much quicker Tennessee’s defensive line was than Arizona’s remade offensive line. The Cardinals offense has a lot of work to do.

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Posted on: August 23, 2010 5:54 pm

Cardinals-Titans: what (or why) to watch

Posted by Andy Benoit

Matt Leinart and Vince Young are on the same field once again tonight. Don’t expect quite as many fireworks as four years ago in Pasadena. Both players are trying to get their respective 8-8 caliber teams over the hump. Problem is, both of these teams are 8-8 caliber in large part because of their quarterbacks.

If Leinart and Young don’t do it for you, here are a few more reasons to watch:

--Chris Johnson. If the Titans are smart, they won’t play the superstar running back more than one series (and if they’re really smart, they’ll sit Johnson the whole night). But that doesn’t mean the third-year sensation isn’t fun to watch. Whether he’s on the field or one the sidelines, count how many times ESPN cameras catch Johnson twitching his head. It’s one of those things where, after noticing it once, you’ll keep noticing it again and again and again and again. (Some people believe Johnson is flicking the dreadlocks out of his eyes. But that doesn’t explain why he twitches his head with his helmet on.)

--Titans tight end Jared Cook. Tennessee is hoping the second-year pro can assume a bigger role in the passing game. Expect Cook to get plenty of reps. He’s an outstanding raw athlete who also has the type of size that makes everyone around him look tiny.

--Cardinals rookie linebacker Darryl Washington. He’s essentially being asked to save Arizona’s depleted inside linebacking corps. How will he look on the big stage?

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Posted on: August 21, 2010 9:30 am

Hot Routes 8.21.10: injuries galore

Posted by Andy Benoit

Got a link for Hot Routes? Tweet us ( @cbssportsnfl  ) or send an email to andy [dot] benoit [at] cbsinteractive [dot] com.

Atari Bigby, currently recovering from ankle surgery, could be headed for PUP. Doctors are saying the strong safety might need eight weeks to get healthy again.

Falcons fifth-round rookie receiver Kerry Meier is out for the season with a knee injury.

Raiders quarterback Charlie Frye needs wrist surgery and has been put on Injured Reserve.

Greg Toler and Trumaine McBride are in a hot competition for the Cardinals’ No. 2 corner job. This tells you that the second-year pro Toler hasn’t played up to expectations; the job was supposed to be his to begin with.

Donovan McNabb and Chris Cooley are building a strong rapport in Washington.

One more Redskins note: despite missing chunks of practice for…whatever ailment he seems to have this week…Albert Haynesworth would like to play Saturday against the Ravens.

Chris Johnson was so proud of his accomplishments in 2009 that he got some new tattoos to commemorate them. Click here to take a look.

The punter position has been a problem for Green Bay (the team tied for last in the NFL in net punting average in 2009). It could just be exaggerated optimism, but coaches think things are turning around.

With safety Louis Delmas’s status for Week 1 in question (groin injury), more and more people are calling on the Lions to acquire disgruntled Chiefs safety Jarrad Page.

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Posted on: August 20, 2010 4:25 pm

Overweight Cards still make Whisenhunt mad

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

RG Deuce Lutui and RT Herman Johnson reported to Cardinals training camp heavier than the coaching staff wanted. Head coach Ken Whisenhunt still isn’t happy about it.

From the Arizona Republic :

Rather than look at how far Lutui and Johnson have come in three weeks, Whisenhunt envisions how well they could be playing if they had shown up in shape.

Whisenhunt finds that infuriating.

Lutui reported at 360 pounds, about 15 more than the club wanted, and he’s around 350 now. Meanwhile, Johnson came in at 380 pounds – the Cardinals wanted him at 360 – and he says he’s lost about 15 pounds.

Maybe it’s not all Johnson’s fault, though. According to this story, Johnson was the biggest baby ever born in Louisiana, topping the scales at 15 pounds, 14 ounces (hell, at that point, he probably could have walked himself out of the delivery room).

For now, both are running with the second team, but don’t expect Lutui to stay there very long. After all, he’s started 53 of the past 54 Arizona games. Johnson, though, some work to do in order to make the squad. Coming into camp 20 pounds overweight didn't help his cause.

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Posted on: August 19, 2010 9:10 am

Hot Routes 8.19.10: No Favre news here

Posted by Andy Benoit

Chargers left tackle Marcus McNeill met with GM A.J. Smith Wednesday. McNeill requested the meeting, but according to Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union Tribune, little progress was made.

Wide receive Brandon Jones signed a five-year, $16.5 million contract with the 49ers last offseason but was released Wednesday. Jones hurt his shoulder in ’09 and fell to the bottom of the depth chart. Speculation is the current coaching staff was never taken with Jones.

Cowboys left guard Kyle Kosier sprained his knee Wednesday and will miss 4-6 weeks. Journeyman Montrae Holland will fill in. Kosier is Dallas’s prime source of mobility inside.

Chargers rookie nose tackle Cam Thomas is impressing some people early on. He seems to have good perspective, too.

The Jets are trying to trade third-string quarterback Kellen Clemens.

Finally! Some good news for the Ravens and their cornerback situation. Fabian Washington, back from last year’s ACL injury, will play against the Redskins Saturday.

With Brent Grimes having a groin injury, the Falcons cornerback competition could be opening up.

Redskins rookie left tackle and No. 4 overall pick, Trent Williams, faces a reckless driving charge from an incident in June.

In either a marketing ploy or a sadly confused effort to beat the summer heat, the Arizona Cardinals will wear black jerseys in their next preseason home game (vs. Redskins). (Perhaps with Kurt Warner retired, the Cardinals are already mourning their 2010 season.)

We knew the Browns were extremely high on strong, athletic outside linebacker Marcus Benard, but is the 2009 undrafted free agent really in line for a starting job?

Maybe the NFL is right when it says fans can’t stand preseason games. Looks like a game featuring two marquee teams, the Chargers and Cowboys, could be blacked out.

Because it’s late in training camp for most teams, there’s probably four or five worthless stories out there about coaches cancelling practice and sending their players to the movies instead. To save you from the temptation of wasting two minutes of your life reading one of these stories, we won’t even provide a link.

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Posted on: August 18, 2010 8:47 pm

Larry Fitzgerald makes great point about rules

Posted by Andy Benoit

Larry Fitzgerald sprained the MCL in his left knee in part because Texans safety Eugene Wilson hit him low. Fitzgerald had a really interesting comment about this on KTAR radio in Phoenix: L. Fitzgerald (US Presswire)

"I think with the rules now, with guys going high above the shoulders and the NFL is really making a big push to protect guys and so I think guys are making a conscious effort to try and stay lower. This might be a result of that."

This comment came about because Fitzgerald was asked if he thought the hit was dirty.

Fitzgerald also said that he had the best offseason of his career, dropping his weight from 222 to 213. He was also asked what he thinks of Matt Leinart:

“It’s too early. We’ve only played one game. We’re throwing it around in shorts and pads and no one is getting hit right now, but when the real bullets start to fly everybody will be able to have a better observation. I think Matt, Derek (Anderson), (John) Skelton, and Max (Hall), they’re all making progress like coach would expect for them to do. People ask me all the time. My focus is how can number 11, how can Larry Fitzgerald, be the best he can be.”

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Posted on: August 16, 2010 3:19 pm

Around the League: Tebow, Big Ben, Fitz & Mittens

Posted by Will Brinson

So, Tim Tebow played some football last night. I thought it was "impressive." Many of you felt differently, but that's okay.

What was impressive about his play? Well that (and what WASN'T that impressive) was the top topic in today's "Around the League" video with Lauren Shehadi.

We also talked about whether Larry Fitzgerald's knee injury should be considered serious/dangerous, when/if Mike Tomlin will get Ben Roethlisberger on the field in the 2010 preseason and whether or not David Carr (aka Mister Mittens) qualifies as a threat to Alex Smith's starting gig in San Francisco.

Pete Prisco then takes over from Falcons training camp before I confirm his suspicious that Atlanta could seriously contend this season and we close out by discussing the single biggest factor in tonight's Jets-Giants preseason matchup. (Aka REVIS.)

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com