Whiz addresses QB competition (but not that other QB)

Posted by Darren Urban on May 31, 2012 – 12:36 pm

Coach Ken Whisenhunt said the Cardinals are trying to split the first-team reps between John Skelton and Kevin Kolb as close to 50/50 as they can.

“I’d have to chart the plays,” Whisenhunt said. “It might be 51 (percent) to 49. I don’t think there’s a great discrepancy.”

And what, he was asked, should be read into that?

“That it’s a competition, like we’ve said all along,” he said.

Whisenhunt did insist that, out on the field, the other factors in the QB conversation — specifically, the amount of money Kolb makes and has been paid — doesn’t enter in. That’s been his philosophy.

“I don’t really think about that,” Whisenhunt said. “I don’t look at a player and think, ‘What’s he making?’ I don’t think that’s the way you do it. I look at the plays he has been making. There has been a lot of guys, free agents or players you didn’t know about who showed up and made big plays for you. I don’t think about (the money). I’ll be honest, I obviously know what we’ve invested in Kevin. I want Kevin to be successful, I want him to be our quarterback. But I’m not going to ignore the fact John Skelton worked pretty hard and did a good job when he was playing and he’s earned the right to compete for that spot.

“I’ve tried to be fair with how we have evaluated players and how the competition goes.”

— Since it’s been brought up, Kent Somers asked Whiz if the Cardinals were “pursuing” or “evaluating” Peyton Manning back in March when the quarterback visited the team complex. Whiz declined to comment, wisely avoiding the subject. We are left to guess. Ah well.

— Rookie WR Michael Floyd sat out today with a quad strain, Whisenhunt said. It isn’t serious, the coach said, and in fact Floyd wanted to try and practice. The Cards decided discretion was the better part of valor.

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24 Responses to “Whiz addresses QB competition (but not that other QB)”

  1. By Judy on May 31, 2012 | Reply

    If as Wiz said he wants Kolb to be our QB,then Kolb will be our QB.The only chance John Skelton has is if Kevin Kolb is hurt,or fails so bad it can’t be ignored.That statement right there is more proof that Warner never had to compete with McCown,or Leinart either.The FO and coaches wanted Warner(Both Green,and Wiz)So Josh,or Matt had no chance.
    I just don’t see why they try to fool us into believing their lies.I don’t care which one is our QB,as long as he is the best player.Even if it turned out to be the rookie.

  2. By Logan Cooper on May 31, 2012 | Reply

    I guarantee these QB’s, since whiz has been here, feel like they are freshman in high school all over again with not knowing if they will start or not. I just hope he makes up his mind sooner, rather than later.

  3. By Mike Ellingboe on May 31, 2012 | Reply


    In your world does 2+2=22 as well? Warner not being named the starter until the start of the 2008 season was being discussed nationally, he was even interviewed about it at the half of one of the remaining preseason games. Green’s ultimate undoing was not realizing that Leinart vs Warner was a complete mismatch. Nothing that happens between Kolb and Skelton will change what happened back then. Nobody is lying to you, why would they bother?

  4. By Judy on May 31, 2012 | Reply

    @Mike Ellingboe.

    If you are going to have a competition,you don’t say that you want one over the other.You keep your moth shut,and choose the best one whem TC and even some of the preseason games are over.Wiz didn’t do that.According to Darren’s Blog,Wiz said he wanted Kolb to be our QB. John Skelton has very little chance,no matter how well he does.All i want is for the competition to be fair.and the best one to start.

  5. By Mike Ellingboe on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply


    “All i want is for the competition to be fair.and the best one to start”

    You think Whisenhunt feels differently? If so, you’re saying the head coach, who has more riding on this decision than anyone, wants the second best QB to start? Apparently you stopped reading after what he said about Kolb, because what I read is pretty clear that Skelton, “earned the right to compete for that spot.” Darren has noted many times, already in OTA’s, the rep count has been 50-50 between them (first two paragraphs of the aforementioned blog). If your interpretation (that Kolb is his guy) was accurate there wouldn’t be any point in splitting reps.

  6. By Patrick on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    Personally, I think Whisenhunt has serious doubts about Kevin Kolb. Remember what Whisenhunt says and what he does are two completely different things. Of course he wants Kevin Kolb to start…. BUT (key word) he understand that Skelton has peformed well and has earned a chance to be our starting QB. That being said, Whisenhunt is going to put the best player he can on the field, whether that be Kolb or Skelton. If Kolb plays like garbage, I can guarentee you that he will not be starting regardless of how much money he’s making.

  7. By Dave on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    I can already hear Whis explaining how the competition was SO VERY close that it made the decision EXTREMELY DIFFICULT, but that KK edged out Skelton by the margin of a frog hair. They’re not gonna sit KK and play Skelton. KK will be named the starter, BUT I do believe he will be on a short leash.

  8. By John the Draft Guy on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    1st- Of course the cards went after Peyton. If they could have signed him, skelton would know he was backing up Manning and Kolb would be in Cleveland.

    @Judy- Fair? Life isn’t fair. While Skelton was here, the cards gave away DRC and a 2nd round pick to get Kolb. Of course, he wants to show that was not a mistake and we didn’t miss in evaluating Kolb or evaluating Skelton. If Kolb holds off Skelton, he would have had to earn it though. Winning give you job security. After 2 losing seasons, people are yelling for Whiz’s head (which I think is crazy). But every head coach knows keeping your job is tied into wins and wins are tied into good QB play. Whiz understands that.

    Maybe Whiz will pull a Tom Landry. When Morton and Staubach were battling, he couldn’t choose and literally rotated them every other play. Funny, the following year, Staubach lead the cowboys over the broncos and, you guessed it , Morton who was sent to Denver.

  9. By Darren Urban on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    John the Draft Guy —

    RE: Manning comment

    It was sarcasm.

  10. By Peter in Canada on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    @Mike Ellingboe

    I wrote in a previous post that coaches who do not win get fired. Therefore only an idiot would play someone whom he thinks does not give him the best chance to win. I think you are beating a dead horse trying to convince Judy. She must think Whiz is an idiot or that there is some kind of conspiracy going on.

  11. By Rob R on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    Say Skelton beats out Kolb, do you still see Kolb remaining with the team or being let go?

  12. By Darren Urban on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    Rob R —

    RE: Kolb released

    If Skelton is the starter, Kolb will be the backup. At least for 2012.

  13. By Andreas - Denmark on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    How is it going with Ryan Lindley? Is he starter material in some years of what you’ve seen up til now? By the way, Arizona got a huuuge fan base in Denmark – Just wanted to let you know 🙂

  14. By Darren Urban on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    Andreas —

    RE: Lindley

    You can see why they like his tools but it’s way too early to know if they will translate.

    And I was just telling someone the other day, “If our franchise can just get a foothold in Denmark …”

  15. By Judy on Jun 1, 2012 | Reply

    @Peter in Canada.
    No i don’t think there is any funny buisness going on.But if both QB’s have an equal chance,why say that you want Kolb.I know he also said Skelton has earned the right to compete,but he did not say he wanted him to be our starter.As i have said elsewhere,l hope they are both so good that they have to flip a coin to choose the starter.Then next year we can trade the other one for draft picks.

  16. By kkfan on Jun 2, 2012 | Reply

    @ Judy, I don’t think you have anything to worry about regarding the comment made by Whizenhunt “of wanting Kolb to be the starter”. Because he makes it very clear that what the owners paid to acquire Kevin ( his contract) isn’t going to be the determining factor of. which one ends up with the starting job.

    If anything that should bode well for Skelton and his fans .If the money comment doesn’t tell you anything, than the fact that he feels that Skelton EARNED the RIGHT to COMPETE for the STARTING JOB should eliminate all doubt..

    From what I viewed of Skeltons performances during Kolb injury absence, he did very little in my estimation that warrants his being given the opportunity to win the starting job.

    He was the lucky recipient of the “W’s due to a defence that was finally begining to find itself under the new DC leadership. by the time he tok over at QB. That is why he was able to eek out those wins. Because Skeltons stats alone certainly didn’t stand out as anything remotely responsible for the “W”‘s.

    Whoever Whiz decides HE wants that is who will get the job. I just hope that it’s based on fairness and real performance not favoritisim. Because it’s obvious that he favors John.

  17. By JohnfromOz on Jun 2, 2012 | Reply

    Kolb as a back-up? That would make him one of the best paid reserves ever!
    Lack of decision is again a Wisenhunt hallmark.

  18. By Mike Ellingboe on Jun 3, 2012 | Reply

    @Peter in Canada,

    What I can’t wrap my mind around with the anti-Whisenhunt camp (aside from the idea that such a group exists) is why they think he plays favorites or doesn’t believe in open competition. This is a coach who cut his projected starter at QB a week before the regular season started. I can’t think of a more resounding way to put the word out that no one is safe if their performance isn’t up to par than that. If anything, he may go too far in believing there is more depth than what is actually available. Agree with your point, which doesn’t have a logical debate against it, this is the Not For Long league and no coach would voluntarily play someone who is costing them wins.

  19. By Mike Ellingboe on Jun 3, 2012 | Reply


    I think what you’re missing in regards to Whisenhunt’s comments is the reality of what we need Kolb to be if we’re to keep moving forward. Right now, Kolb and Skelton are close enough to even to warrant open competition. The harsh reality is that isn’t good enough, and while it’s understandable for Skelton to be at the level he’s at, at this point in time, we didn’t bring Kolb here to be Skelton’s equal. Hence, the comment about him wanting Kolb to be the starter. We haven’t had a legit #1 QB since Warner said his good-bye’s, and Kolb needs to be that guy. To Whisenhunt’s point, if he’s not so be it, we’ll go with Skelton and hope he’s ahead of his projected learning curve but realistically we need the Kevin Kolb they saw on tape when they traded for him.

  20. By Eazy E on Jun 3, 2012 | Reply

    We we’re pursuing Peyton and unfortunately failed. I don’t think we did that Harbaugh BS or at least I hope not.

  21. By Scott H on Jun 3, 2012 | Reply

    Judy –

    Interesting point but using Warner as an example was the wrong way to go. Looking at the way Warner played over his final 3 years here, who else could possibly have truly competed with him??? Leinart??? Absolutely not. From the time of training camp during the 2007 season, it was clear that Warner was back in the groove and was clealry out-playing Matt Leinart. Period. The team tried to keep Leinart in the staring role going into that year but every time warner took the field, he was CLEARLY the better QB for this team. Had Leinart not gone down injured about 5 games is, he probably would have been benched at some point.

    AND it ain’t like Leinart has gone on to show what he can do since he left the Cardinals. Neither has any other QB who played here during the Warner years.

    From 2007 thru 2009, Warner wasn’t just the best QB on this roster – he was one of the best QB’s in the league. No one on this roster could hold a candle to him during that time.

  22. By johnnybluenose on Jun 3, 2012 | Reply

    i can only hope that this quarterback competition is a short one. i hope kolb can demonstrate early on that he is the guy the cards traded for. kolb needs most of the work so that he can get more familiar with the offence, especially the receivers. in my opinion, a long, protracted competition at the qb position is a recipe for disaster. skelton is not ready. if it is determined that he is the starter we are in big trouble this year. not to mention wasting a low number one draft pick on a wide receiver who won’t have much of an opportunity to catch many balls.

  23. By Scott H on Jun 4, 2012 | Reply

    johnny –

    For maybe a different reason, I hope for the same thing. i think back to the miserable training camp leading up to the 2010 season where both Anderson AND Leinart were thoroughly un-impressive and neither clearly out-played the other. It was painful. As much as I have been critical of how the coaches handled the whole QB position that year, I must admit that the QB’s themselves did NOTHING to help the situation because they were equally inept.

    I just want SOMEONE to step up and CLEARLY show that they are THE guy to lead this team. If they BOTH look great, fine. No problem. But, please…not another camp like 2 years ago! Not another year where NOBODY looks like they want the job.

  24. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Jun 5, 2012 | Reply


    By Marc Sessler
    Published: June 5, 2012 at 04:08 p.m. Updated: June 5, 2012 at 04:53 p.m.

    “Kevin Kolb must carry the load for Cardinals”

    …”Since signing Kolb last summer, the team has dished out $17 million to a quarterback with a 6-10 career record in five seasons. That includes a 3-6 mark in 2011. Meanwhile, Skelton is 7-4 as Arizona’s starter and will earn $490,000 this year (that figure, ladies and gentlemen, is an appropriate price tag for an unproven NFL passer).

    Look, it’s no surprise Kolb has to morph into a ball of fire this season. Had the team — in another universe — signed Manning, Kolb would be playing in another city at a vastly reduced rate. As it stands, don’t expect Arizona to take on his $9 million salary in 2013 if he pushes out another, well, Kolb-like season. Not with Larry Fitzgerald in his prime, waiting for someone to fill Kurt Warner’s shoes. We saw what this team accomplished with a top-flight passer.

    Too many jobs are on the line in Arizona to allow this pet project to float along past 2012.”

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