QB “talks,” Fitz and the NY Times

Posted by Darren Urban on May 6, 2011 – 3:29 pm

Very quiet around the complex today. That really shouldn’t surprise anyone. As we move into the weekend, a couple or three things to chew on:

— I am all for speculation about the quarterbacks, because in part I’m going to need to engage in some of it myself as we go forward as long as the labor situation is unsettled. But keep one thing in mind with whatever you hear reported — there haven’t been any talks between the Cards and any other team about a quarterback trade or potential trade, at least not in the last couple months. Even when there was that brief window last week to allow players to work out and speak to coaches, the rest of business was still on hold. As I have said before, I expect the Cards to explore a lot of QB options (kind of like how Sando breaks it down here; I like the analogy to the progressions on a pass play) but such exploration has been and will remain in a holding pattern until this is all sorted out.

In short, speculation is just speculation right now.

— I had someone ask me where Larry Fitzgerald will fit in the NFL Network’s current countdown of the top 100 players in the NFL today. I guessed somewhere in the 20 to 25 range. did the top 101 players in the NFL last year, ranking them (the best they could) on metrics and the like. In its list, Fitzgerald was 52nd best in 2010, between No. 51 Tramon Williams, the cornerback from Green Bay, and No. 53 Joe Haden, the rookie cornerback from Cleveland. Yes, it took into account poor quarterback play, with which “lesser men would have crumbled.”

— The New York Times’ Fifth Down blog breaks down, briefly, the Cards from last season.

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47 Responses to “QB “talks,” Fitz and the NY Times”

  1. By ross on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, a writer (bickley I think) said recently that the williams pick proves timmy has too many flaws to be a feature back and beanie is a bust. Do you think whiz feels that way about either or both of those statements?

  2. By Darren Urban on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Ross —

    RE: Williams pick

    I’m not sure he feels quite that strongly, but undoubtedly, there must be some issues. The Vikings aren’t drafting a running back in the second round, for instance.

  3. By Nick Rowland on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    God people can be idiots. Fitz is at worst in the top ten! 52nd???? Are you kidding me??? This guy has more talent than any other reciever in the league. People forget we saw what he can do a couple years ago when we had a qb with out his head in his ass!

  4. By Mario on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    It would be nice if it was settled. I’m a little tired of the “what if’s” from all of the armchair GM’s….once it’s settled I’m sure we’ll have our fill of “I can’t believe whiz did’s” from the same crowd. It’s going to be a long summer.

  5. By AndyStandsUp on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Enjoy the weekend, Mr. Urban.
    I have a feeling this Mother’s day will be more meaningful for all of us.

  6. By ross on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, I agree with you in principal…but gerhart was a second rounder last year…I think its clear that the post draft presser about williams not fumbling was directed at timmy and the selection itself is an indictment of beanie. They both better elevate their game, cause williams is a good back…have a good holiday Darren.

  7. By Peter in Canada on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Mario –

    Personally, I am enjoying all the opinions regarding who should be the QB that we eventually pick up. The differences of opinion make great reading. Whoever we pick up I won’t be criticising the front office because we will never know what the teams were asking for the guys we didn’t trade for and the reasons why certain free agents were not signed. In a previous blog I said we should take a flier on Vince Young but I am willing to admit that Graves and Whiz know more about him than I ever will so how can I criticise them if they choose not to bring him in.

  8. By Mickey on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    All Ii have to say is, “May we play with all your heart and never give up!” Whenever football might start again.

  9. By Travis McCollum on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    So what your saying is that there has been no talks with other teams for trade for sometime now

  10. By Canadian Red Bird on May 6, 2011 | Reply


    Have to love Andy Reid’s latest famous quote in that the team that gets Kolb will compete for a championship. Nice try Andy, like you think people believe everything that comes out of your mouth. Secondly if he so Fre……..ken good, then why don’t you keep him.

    My advise to Andy is that he start to go to church on Sunday. It might help him tell the truth. I think most of the knowledgeable football folk are on to Mr. Reid by now.

    I’ve got to the point where it doesn’t really matter who they get, just don’t give up anything more than a second rounder whoever you bring in.

  11. By Mike Ellingboe on May 6, 2011 | Reply


    Tread carefully whenever attempting to give Bickley’s ideas any merit at all. The Vikings may not have addressed it again this year, but even with AP they did go RB in round 2 last year.

  12. By Mike Ellingboe on May 6, 2011 | Reply


    Agreed. Find any other player in the league who could have put up the numbers Fitz did with our QB situation, and w/o screaming and crying about it all season long. And take away a player the caliber of Boldin while we’re at it.

    Ranked behind Tramon Williams – find a GM willing to make that deal.

  13. By Brian on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Darren –

    RE: Williams pick

    Not to be a stickler, but the Vikings did just that last season. They drafted Toby Gerhardt in the second round. I know they did that to replace Chester Taylor, but I thought I’d point it out.

  14. By Big Red on May 6, 2011 | Reply

    Bull crap about the QB not helping out. He had over 1,000 YARDS easly without a top QB.

  15. By graetschinger on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    more i read about an ortondeal on, i would love that fit!
    kolb is sooo expensive and i think orton or bulger help us more now.

    daran, what are you and the cards thinking about this?

  16. By cactus jeff on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    RB question is easy, go to a game, listen to the crowd as Hightower hits the hole. Then listen to the crowd question how he only got 1 yard. Hightower is too slow. Beanie is too uncoordinated to take a handoff. He looks like he is taking the SAT when receiving the handoff.

    Getting a RB was crucial, just like NOT starting Rex Hadnot, if he is a starter next year the Cardinals will be drafting Andrew Luck next year.

  17. By toddCARDS on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    i really hate to say it-because he’s a part of our Card’s family-but hightower is on his way out of AZ in my oppinion…timmy’s been with us for 4 years,was a 5th rnd pick,he has ball control issues,and even with his good seasons he’s never been able to get completely over the “average” or “mediocre” back status and production. whiz and co. are not gonna be gettin rid of beanie (our 1st rnd pick the year before last) with all that cash they spent on him-beanie’s definitely gettin another chance to redeem himself in cardinal red…ryan williams is great with the football (fumble free) and could be an impact player-soon….i dont wanna see any of my cardinal’s backs leave,but unfortunately someone has to be the odd man out.

  18. By John the draft guy on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    The Vikings DID draft a runningback last year in the second round. I don’t think that meant anything except Peterson needs a break every now and then.

    What I heard Whiz say was he went for best player available and Williams was the 15th player ranked on their board. I do think Beanie and Hightower need to improve their game and stop fumbling and getting injured (Beanie). But to me, I see Williams coming in to compete and the best back(s) will be on the field. I don’t think it has to be so black and white to say he picked a RB so out with Beanie or Hightower (even though it was my first thought when I heard the pick)

  19. By ross on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    Cactus jeff- wish I could go to a game! Sucks living in virginia!

  20. By Alex on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    I just hope Az does something about the QB problem , because Az will not win their division.

  21. By Haggis Bob on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    Orton stats past 3 years:

    2010 – 293/498, 58.8% completed, 38.3 att/game, 3,653 yards, 20 TD/9 INT, 87.5 rating
    2009 – 336/541, 62.1% completed, 33.8 att/game, 3801 yards, 21 TD/12 INT, 86.8 rating
    2008 – 272/465, 58.5% completed, 31.0 att/game, 2972 yards, 18 TD/12 INT, 79.6 rating

    Bulger stats past 3 years:
    2010 – N/A
    2009 – 140/247, 56.7% completed, 27.4 att/game, 1,469 yards, 5 TD/6 INT, 70.7 rating
    2008 – 251/440, 57.0% completed, 29.3 att/game, 2,720 yards, 11 TD/13 INT, 71.4 rating

    Kolb stats past 3 years:
    2010 – 115/189, 60.8% completed, 27.0 att/game, 1,197 yards, 7 TD/7 INT, 76.1 rating
    2009 – 62/96, 64.6% completed, 19.2 att/game, 741 yards, 4 TD/3 INT, 88.9 rating
    2008 – 17/34, 50.0 % completed, 144 yards, 0 TD/4 INT, 21.8 rating

    If you look at the body of work by the top 3 QB options (IMHO) Orton has done the most work and ‘most likely’ would be the best to step in and make things happen. He would have plenty of talent surrounding him so that he won’t feel like he has to be the playmaker. Just the opposite is needed: someone who can get the ball TO the playmakers.

  22. By TBru on May 7, 2011 | Reply

    Lockout over yet?

    blah ok, I’ll check back in a few weeks.

  23. By The man on May 8, 2011 | Reply

    @toddCARDS I do agree with you to a point, I mean we did just get rid of a first round Q.B. pick. Everybody is expendable

  24. By Jesse Robles on May 8, 2011 | Reply

    You need more than ONE back in this league now a days, I like our options, but we definitely need a STARTING RB. As for QB, lets not rush anything and force another Derek Anderson at QB. I still feel Skelton has a chance to get really good. I like the Cards not taking a QB in the Draft. I say, and have been saying, get Mcnabb. I say Mcnabb, Palmer, Orton, or Bulger. Kolb is just of a gamble as any of these Rookie QB’s, let Skelton learn.

  25. By Viking rush on May 8, 2011 | Reply

    Everyone talking about Darren addressing the Vikes RB,

    He said “the Vikings didn’t draft a RB THIS YEAR.” We know last year they drafted Toby Gerhardt in the second round, but Chester Taylor and Mewalde Moore were shown the door. I think this proves the point that a second round draft of a RB pushes at least 1 of the others out the door. You guys are making Darrens point for him! The draft choice of Williams in the second round is pushing someone out. I don’t care if it’s Beanie or Tim to be honest, after last season, the only RB that deserves a spot in the Cards backfield is the Hyphen.

  26. By fightfan12001 on May 8, 2011 | Reply

    The cardinals took a chance on Anderson, paid him 4 million dollars, after years of terrible performances with the Browns, but can’t rationlize McNabb having an opportunity here. McNabb has never been a problem personality with teams he played on. I can remember Warner and his wife going to the media in St. Louis complaining about how Kurt was getting the wrong end of the stick. I remember Warner leaving St. Louis and going to New York in consecutive years. Three teams in three years. But this same senario is some type of issue in picking up McNabb. Please. McNabb is a great QB in his own right, who had a bad 2010 season. I also remember 2006 and how pathetic Warner looked that year for the Cardinals. What’s up with the double standard? Anderson over McNabb?

  27. By Mike Ellingboe on May 8, 2011 | Reply

    @Viking rush,

    Not to speak for anyone else but the point I was getting at is that the local writer (Bickley) who made the comment that Williams’ arrival means that Beanie is officially a bust is an idiot who continually makes snap judgments like that. It does not necessarily mean someone is getting pushed out. We’re likely losing Jason Wright to retirement, and as Whisenhunt noted in the press conference following the pick we had four RB’s on the roster last year, and only one played in all 16 games.

    It could be that one will be shown the door, or it could just as easily be that we need four to have enough depth.

  28. By Scott H on May 8, 2011 | Reply


    RE: McNabb

    You say that McNabb’s personality has never been a problem with the teams he has played with. Just my opinion but I say absolutely NOT true. And living just outside of the Philly area and having been a close witness to his entire career with the Eagles, I know what I’m talking about. Now, McNabb is not a Terrell Owens and he’s not a bad guy. But believe me when I tall ya that many, many Eagles fans and media had their issues with him long before his career was over there. First, he’s entirely too sensitive. He never got over being booed at the draft by Eagle fans when they took him instead of the RB they wanted. Second, he never took responsibility for his shortcomings. he pretty much signed his own ticket right out of town when he basically blamed their blowout loss to the Cowboys in the playoffs two years ago on their young players. THAT went over like a fart in church among his team-mates, let me tell ya. Meanwhile, HE himself was horrible during that game and acted like a total jackass before the game.

    And you talk about Brenda Warner getting herself involved with Kurt’s situation in St Louis? Well, that was nothing next to the total pain in the butt that McNabb’s parents were when he was in Philly. Constantly complaining that their son was never appreciated enough, that he never had good enough players around him, etc. Listening to them, you could see why Donovan never took responsibility for himself – because he had parents who always blamed everyone BUT him.

    Anyway….just offering a perspective that you may not have been aware of. His personality WAS absolutely a problem during his time in Philly.

  29. By Mike Ellingboe on May 8, 2011 | Reply


    DA to McNabb is kind of apples to oranges. We signed DA with the intent of having him here as a back-up, not a starter. McNabb was very good, oftentimes great, in Philadelphia but when a team is willing to let their starting QB go to a team in their own division that saying, as clearly as possible, they believe he’s done. After his performance in Washington there may not be a lot of reason to think they weren’t right.

  30. By Haggis Bob on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    Sunday late night thinking: speculation

    The Lakers lost, HOO-RAY! What do you know about a NFL team going to LA? I know they are chomping hard, hell they even tried to get another NBA team. Have you heard anything from the inside? Sorry to steal the thread for a sec… >:/

  31. By darthcard on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    Please cardinals please do not pick up Orton. His stats are completely inflated due to the pathetic defenses the afc west put up outside of san diego. Please cardinals watch the tape vs the 49ers or the cardinals this past year=terrible. Rod graves coach WHiz there’s a reason chicago a team that never had an elite Qb tossed him. And John Elway one of the best secretly trying to trade him. Just say no to the Orton.

  32. By Mike Ellingboe on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    @Haggis Bob,

    While we’re told not to read into this, all signs point to the Rams coming back to LA in 2015. Their owner, Stan Kroenke, is on the LA stadium committee and for some reason that stadium isn’t scheduled to be ready until 2015. Significance? From what I read there is an out in the lease at STL after 2014 if certain upgrades aren’t made to it, and from what else I’ve read there isn’t enough time to make those upgrades. Combine that with the fact that the league wouldn’t have to make any division changes and it’s reduces travel for everyone in the NFC West, plus it’s a team that still has a pretty loyal following out here and it starts to add up.

    Not that I’m reading anything in to any of that, of course.

  33. By Mike Ellingboe on May 9, 2011 | Reply


    Are you sure Denver has been trying to trade him? While I keep hearing his name attached to trade rumors with Tebow and Quinn as the next in line for the starting job I have a hard time believing he’s really available.

  34. By former AZ.resident on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    Orton was playing injured during the cards game. I think he would help the cars a lot. If the cards get kolb it would be at a high price and would mean he would be the franchise quarterback instead of skeleton.

  35. By John the draft guy on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    First, I’m not sure what is going on in Denver. To trade up and grab Tebow last year was a shocker when the offense wasn’t the problem. Now you have a huge question mark in Tebow and a fairly decent QB in Orton. If Denver goes with Tebow and Brady Quinn and trade Orton, they could be in for a very long year.

    But, even faced with a long year, Orton is not the long term answer, so moving him and seeing what Tebow can do makes sense. So, what will they get for him? Who else but the cards would want him? Miami? Tennessee? Not a lot of teams. I can’t see Orton getting more than a third rounded, maybe not even that.

    Is Orton better than Anderson? Of course, much better. Can he be a good stop gap for a year or two? I think with Orton last year, we win our division. So yes he is a good stop gap. Is he my first option? No. I go with a trade for Orton when other options are gone.

    Although I don’t believe he will be traded, Carson Palmer is the best fit. I don’t know how far back the Bidwell’s and Brown’s , but that would be the first call I would make. Secondly, I would look at Bulger. Only if both those options were gone, would I make the call for Orton. As for Kolb, I really like next years potential draft class at QB next year. Besides Luck, their could be 3-4 first rounders next year. Get a guy to fill in for a few years and get the franchise guy next year.

  36. By john m on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    In all the talk about qb’s no one is mentioning trading for a more realistic qb that could be available instead of the ones that are either too expensive or not available without selling the farm. Wolfley said that maybe the Cards are in the market for two qbs and if so why isn’t anyone mentioning the name of Shaun Hill. He is 31 with 10yrs in the league and has played in the NFC West for years. Had a winning record with the 49rs and is solid not flashy. Lets trade for Hill and sign Bulger. Let those two compete and bring Skelton along slow for the next few years.

  37. By McNabb in AZ on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    D Mac is the answer.

  38. By Scott H on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    MCNabb in AZ –

    If D Mac is the answer, then what was the question??? How ’bout this – Can you name the over-rated QB who has been dumped by two teams in the same number of years who is NOT coming to Arizona this year? Yup – D Mac is definitely the answer.

  39. By Haggis Bob on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    @ Mike Ellingboe,

    Thanks! That is exactly what I needed to know.

    @ Everyone else,

    I like the QB discussions today. They have substance and the points have merit. Good job guys!

  40. By cardinalman2 on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    You know what’s pretty cool. Is that the Cardinals was Sam bradford first opponent and now the Cardinals are playing in Cam Newton’s first game

  41. By John the draft guy on May 9, 2011 | Reply

    John M,
    I think Shawn Hill isn’t mentioned because I can’t believe the Lions let him go with Staffords injury history. I love the Lions draft and with another player or two could be a pretty good team. It would be really dumb to let Hill go. I would agree Hill would be an option if available.

    D Mac, at least your better than Anderson. So if everyone else is gone, Yes, you are the answer.

  42. By Matt in Philly on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    I wish I could quit you NFL! But I can’t seem to stop reading all the garbage being put out there by the sports media. I really hope that all of these “rumors” and “trades that must happen” are just ESPN and SI and Sportsline trying to drum up hits on their websites.

    First and foremost, I hope we don’t go after Kolb. I keep hearing how great he is — with Andy Reid as his biggest supporter (shocking!) — even though he’s done nothing.

    Second, I keep hearing that John Skelton is not a “bona-fide” quarterback, and that is just so much hypocrisy. Go compare the stats between Kolb and Skelton in their first real taste of NFL action in a season. If Kolb is this future franchise quarterback, then why can’t Skelton — a bigger, more mobile, stronger armed player — be one two years from now? Let’s not trade off valuable assets for a guy we don’t need.

    My vote is to sign Hasselbeck — a guy with a good rapport with this team, a guy who commands respect and confidence, a guy who is accurate, a guy who is tough, a guy who has memorized a division rival’s playbook, and a guy who has put up pro bowl numbers without ever having a receiving corp as good as the one we have here. Sign him to a two-year deal, let Skelton relieve him a couple games a year to keep Matt healthy, and stay competitive over the next couple years with a REAL quarterback.

  43. By Chris B on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    If we get Kolb, he’s the future. If we get Orton, he can win. If we find Skelton to be future we can either trade Orton or keep him as a backup (capable one too) and Whiz won’t lose his job for getting Orton if he flops. Whiz won’t be here if he trades for Kolb and Kolb bombs. palmer is my first choice too but orton has more tape than Kolb (and possibly less of a price). And we don’t know who is available or not. A lot of teams don’t say “we have such-and-such for trade”. Team A will call team B and ask if they are interested in a trade. Happened 3 times last year; Reggie Wells to Eagles, Rhodes to AZ and McFadden to Steelers. No one knew those trades were happening until they did. So the availability of players is fluid with exception of driving up the price (Reid/Kolb).

  44. By Scott H on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Matt in Philly –

    Everyone’s different opinions are what makes all of this so interesting, but I just don’t get anyone wanting Hasselbeck here as QB for the Cardinals. First, he has a chronic back issue that has made him miss time in at least the last 3 consecuitive seasons. As he gets older, that is only getting worse. Second, where has he taken the Seahawks in recent years??? When did Matt Hasselbeck last go to a Pro Bowl??? Third, if ya really think about it, was Hasselbeck ever really ever the guy who made the Seahawks go? The Seahawks BEST years ( when they were dominating the division and went to a SB ) were also Shaun Alexander’s BEST years. HE was the guy who made that team go. Hasselbeck benefitted tremendously from several years of the NFL’s best RB and the NFL’s best one side of the O-line. Once that started to deteriorate, so did the Seahawks. Hasselbeck was never good enough to carry that team. Again, just my opinion. I was never really all thta impressed with Hasselbeck. And at this point, all he is is older.

    I also think that Hasselbeck holds onto the ball too long, takes too many sacks, and loses too many fumbles. I’m with ya on Skelton. But if we’re looking for a veteran to be a mentor and to play if we need him, I’d rather take ashot with Bulger. At his best, Bulger was a much better QB than Hasselbeck and he’s not as injury prone.

  45. By Haggis Bob on May 10, 2011 | Reply

    Wouldn’t you like to have Matt or Marc considering they have time in the NFC West and could bring all their knowledge of the teams and players? Matt, though not 100% like the old Matt, knows a lot and could bring that knowledge here. Plus I think he is more a fighter, I see him pumping up the QB position. Marc and Kyle seem passive to me (like Derek). McNabb seems too happy-go-lucky to inspire John (or any other young QB we might stable). Its not always about numbers. There are certain leadership tangibles that are not reflected in stats. The realities of which QB could be available and accessible is still completely unknown. I think if we are stop-gapping the position pick someone who brings a lot to the table, not just the ability to take a snap and throw the ball (ala Derek). Kinda like what Joey is doing to the defense. Mentoring the young guys. But not just hey you should do this, and more get out there, smack that guy down and show him who is boss! Or in the QB case, get out there, show the guys you are the leader and get the damn job done!

  46. By Scott H on May 11, 2011 | Reply

    Haggis Bob –

    Interesting thoughts. I hear ya about the leadership qualities but…in pro sports, you have to be on the field/court/ice in order to be a leader. If you’re not playing, you’re not really in a position to be a leader. That’s part of what concerns me about Hasselbeck. Given the recent track record, it seems inevitable that he’s gonna miss some games because of his health. Then what? Guys aren’t gonna stand in awe of him just because he’s Matt Hasselbeck…

    And while I think Hasselbeck has the kind of personality that could make him a good teacher / mentor, I wonder if he’s ready to embrace that role right now while he probably still sees himself as a F/T starter.

    And I think this angle of him having such a handle on the NFC West because he’s been in the division for so long is entirely over-played. Teams change so much at a such a rapid pace due to QB and head coaching changes that I really don’t think this matters. But since it keeps coming up, does anyone actually know what his record against the NFC West over time has been? Because if it’s not really all that impressive, then I’d say that this means nothing at all.

    I’ll say this – if it were a choice between Hasselbeck starting with Skelton waiting in the wings OR Skelton starting with Bulger as the back-up, I’ll take the latter.

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