Arians talks QBs, Cribbs and other stuff over breakfast

Posted by Darren Urban on March 20, 2013 – 9:05 am

The NFC coaches breakfast was this morning — bright and early at 7:15 a.m. — here at the NFL coaches meetings at the Arizona Biltmore. That meant an hour hanging out with Cardinals coach Bruce Arians. There will be plenty more in-depth of what was said, but for now a few of the main highlights — the biggest being that the reality of Drew Stanton being the 2013 starting quarterback feels very close right now.

— Asked if this was a tough year to be going into the draft needing a quarterback, Arians didn’t blink. “I don’t feel we need one.”

— Along those lines (and again, I will have an article up later today on the subject) Arians said he wasn’t worried about the quarterback situation. He doesn’t know enough about Brian Hoyer, Ryan Lindley or John Skelton yet, because he hasn’t had a chance to go over video and ask “why” on various plays. He obviously has done that with Stanton. But he said he thinks he can win with Stanton, and he said he won’t have a problem if things stay status quo starting Stanton this season.

— Yes, such QB talk is possiblely a smokescreen. Or just hard driving optimism so players (and fans) don’t want to write off 2013. But Arians sure sounded genuine.

— He wants to name a starting QB before training camp. That’s best for the team, he said, making sure the locker room knows who “The Man” will be.

— It hurt Kevin Kolb that Arians couldn’t sit down with him and talk about his play last season and again, figuring out the whys and why nots of decision-making. Without that information, moving on (given the contract) was the best decision, Arians said.

— He talked a little bit about the possibility of adding free agent Josh Cribbs, assuming at some point Cribbs is healthy and the Cards still have interest by that point. He wouldn’t mind having both Cribbs and Patrick Peterson back for a kick or two. “It’d be a nice addition if it works out.” One thing Cribbs won’t do is be QB in a wildcat formation. “I’m not a wildcat dude,” Arians said.

— Not only will Lorenzo Alexander play outside linebacker, new defensive end Matt Shaughnessy can also stand up and play OLB. That could make for an interesting pass rush situation.

— Asked about the tight ends, he was blunt: “I’m not a fullback guy, never have been.” Not great news for Anthony Sherman, at least on the surface. Arians wants two tight ends when one can maneuver into the backfield, making it much harder for the defense to know what’s coming. Having a fullback restricts that flexibility, he said.

— He said the speed at receiver with Fitz, Andre Roberts and Michael Floyd is “plenty fast enough.” He added with a chuckle, wide receiver “is not the position I’ve worried about.”

— Rehab has gone well for center Lyle Sendlein, tackle Levi Brown and running back Ryan Williams, but Arians isn’t sure how much they will do in the early on-field work.

— It’ll be wait-and-see where second-year offensive linemen Nate Potter and Bobby Massie play, either guard or tackle. But Arians is confident they each can do both.

— Levi Brown could play right tackle. But Arians right now sure sounds like a guy expecting to have Brown at left tackle.

— The coaching staff are still trying to figure out what position Justin Bethel will play, cornerback or safety. They will pick one and let him learn it well.

— The Cardinals color Kangol was on display again Wednesday morning. Could we see something similar on Sundays? Arians is talking with with New Era and the NFL on that subject. “I’m not getting fined,” Arians joked. “There’s got to be more than baseball caps, know what I mean?”


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47 Responses to “Arians talks QBs, Cribbs and other stuff over breakfast”

  1. By donttakelosses on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    LOVE this kind of post D, great run down, insights. Keep ’em coming.

    Btw, BadAss has guts to wear that dumb hat, lol, bravo! LMAO. That’s what happens when you were born in ’54. At age 59, we just do what we want.


  2. By Eric G on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Asked if this was a tough year to be going into the draft needing a quarterback, Arians didn’t blink. “I don’t feel we need one.”

    Umm, yes we do Arians. Stanton is not the answer. Smith can be. If we don’t take Smith, we better draft a Tackle.

  3. By D on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Find an exit Darren, I smell smoke coming out of the Biltmore…

    1– He won’t pass up a difference maker at the Pass rusher spot if he has a chance to get one.
    2– He know’s Jockel and Fisher won’t be there and most rest of the tackles in the draft are Right Tackles in terms of starting this year.
    3–If a QB falls to second round he would be tempted to take. (especially after he watches the tape from last year on Lindley and Skelton.)

    I think this coaching staff is better than last years, but even BA knows you can’t make chicken saland out of chicken fill in the blank…

  4. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    If Arians isn’t worried about the QB position, then he’s not worried about any position on the team. It’s hard to believe and somewhat scary that Arians admits to not having gone over the game tape of Skelton, Lindley, or Hoyer

    Darren – do you really believe Arians hasn’t gone over any game tape of the QBs on this roster? How in the heck do you make QB decisions in free agency or the draft without analyzing any film of the QBs currently on your roster?

  5. By Darren Urban on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Ottis —

    RE: Tape

    He has gone over tape. But he believes without the interaction with the player to ask why and why not of what happened on that tape, it’s impossible to fully evaluate.

    And that’s one of the reasons Arians is going with someone he is comfortable with. It could change.

  6. By Dynosoar on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Great post.

    When the “Coach Arians” hat like the one in the photo go on sale in the store?

    I like what I hear, if it plays as well on the field as it sounds in a breakfast interview, we’re playoff bound for sure.

  7. By Dynosoar on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    When WILL the…


  8. By Rio on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Has any one notice, Beenie Wells and Kolb still not pick up , both are losers.

    New coach knows what he is doing.

    So great we got rid of Wiz, he was a joke.

  9. By iammattyoung on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    One thing that encourages me about Arians is his first two years as OC in Cleveland, where the Browns went 16-16 with Tim Couch as their QB. If Stanton can be as good as Tim Couch, we’ll be respectable this year.

    That being said, I’m really hoping for a pass-rusher (a la Jarvis Jones, Dion Jordan, Barkevious Mingo) in the first round, and Larry Warford in the 2nd. Say what you will about this O-line, Colledge and Snyder are not long term (heck, they aren’t short-term) solutions at Guard. Keim has done a bang-up job filling holes at linebacker and corner that should allow us to make some moves for the future.

  10. By Mike Ellingboe on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    He added with a chuckle, wide receiver “is not the position I’ve worried about.”

    If I’ve got this right, he’s not worried about the QB, thinks our OL is better than advertised, likes our WR’s, and is basically installing the same offense as we had last year, albeit hinting at more involvement with the TE’s. I hope this shouldn’t be interpreted to mean that he thinks he found the woes to our 32nd ranked offense by replacing Kolb with Stanton, and Beanie with Mendenhall (especially with his history of ignoring the run game).

    I’ll give him this, he’s probably an incredible poker player but I’m guessing he doesn’t really believe he can bluff his way to victory with the hand he currently has. If so, we may want to close our eyes when Seattle takes the field against us again.

  11. By Corgon on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply


    is this whispers you as well, we’ll go after a TE in the draft?
    If he don’t want a QB (and i think Smith is out of question), and we can’t put our hands on Jockel, Fisher, or Warmack, it would be nice to trade down several spots and nab Eifert or Ertz. (yes I know, there should be someone who wants to trade up)

  12. By eric on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    man i love this coach.

  13. By AzDesertRat1953 on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Nice Darren, thanks for the info.

    I hope the NFL leaves BA alone and will let him keep his head warm.
    Tom Landry used to ware a Fadora or a Bowler, can’t remember the exact style.

    If Stanton turns out to be The Man, it won’t take more than three regular games to see if he is going to work out. Now IF Geno happens to be around on the seventh draft pick, who knows?

    As it stands right now, BA knows more about what Stanton can do than Any of us.

    GO CARDS!!!

  14. By Rufus on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    I’m betting the Cardinals use an early draft pick to select a QB. Give credit to Arians though for keeping us guessing. Yes, he probably is a great poker player.

  15. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    For all those who believe in the “Best Player Available” approach to the draft, we could honestly see it under Arians. ( I am one who believes that BPA for your needs is the way to go and QB trumps all)


    If you believe you have an Oline that consist of these five guys, Brown, Colledge, Potter, Sendlin, and Massie and they can get the job done. There isn’t a perceived need.

    If you have Shaughnessy and Alexander added to the OLB mix, you dont need a OLB.

    If Stanton could start, you dont need a QB.

    We actually go into the draft with no real perceived needs.

    Would you like an upgrade on the Oline? sure, but you dont have to go that way.
    Would you like a young QB? sure but again, it doesnt have to be forced.
    Do we need a FS? No bell is there but I sure would like to upgrade him in the draft.

    I finally am getting a grip on this new regime. It took a while. But I truly think he believes he has guys in place that can play. His draft will be of those players who are the best guys for the system and makes the team better.

    So, in reality, look at the best player on the board at 7, and that is our pick. If that is Sharrif Floyd or Star Lotalelei, we all may be surprised at the pick.

    It will be interesting. You may not like the approach, but only time will tell.

  16. By Buck on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Re Ottis Anderson Fan – He did not say he had not gone over the QB tapes, he said he was not allowed to go over them with the QBs and ask why this and why that. Makes a difference.

  17. By Buck on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Ottis Anderson Fan – Sorry. See that Daren has already answered that.

  18. By Todd on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Darren, what would you think about drafting Geno Smith and have a trade pre worked out with Philadelphia where Smith goes to Philly and the Cardinals get Nick Foles and an additional draft pick like a 3 or 4? This way, Chip Kelly gets a QB made for the read option spread offense and the Cardinals get a local start and get more of a drop back passer with high completion percentage in Foles that fits Arian’s offense more. Pass this idea on to Steve Keim and I bet you get a raise…… 😉

  19. By Darren Urban on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Todd —

    RE: Philly

    Philly drafts in front of the Cards. If they want Smith, they would just draft him.

  20. By clssylssy on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Yawn…doesn’t look like the new coach is out to set the world on fire…that is REALLY scary!
    Sounds like a lot of back peddling…don’t see a need for a QB??? ARE YOU SERIOUS! Stanton is OK…for a backup, but, really? We still don’t have a franchise QB, which is pretty central in the minds of most experts, and while I respect Coach Arians, as a teacher, lets remember this is his first gig as a Head Coach. The Cards are going to be ground into the hereafter if we can’t step things up this year and so far, the Cards have not received winning marks in the Free Agency

  21. By Darren Urban on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Clssy —

    RE: Grades

    Darn. I was really hoping to see the Cards get the Bleacher Report stamp of approval. Maybe next year.

  22. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply


    “Darn. I was really hoping to see the Cards get the Bleacher Report stamp of approval. Maybe next year.”

    Great line.

    It is nice to see someone else who has the same respect for the Bleacher Report as I do.

  23. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply


    I am sure you hurried through this without thinking it out, but help me out on this one. I may not be understanding.

    Either you are saying

    Philly gets Geno with our 7th overall pick, and keeps their first.

    The Cards get Foles and a 3rd rounder.

    So our #1 for Foles and a third.


    Maybe you were thinking switching 1’s, but as Darren pointed out, Philly has the 4th pick and we have the 7th. .

    So philly would give up the 4th over all pick, a 3rd round pick and Nick Foles to have the honor to pick Geno at number 7

    Now that is a trade I can get behind. Darren, make it happen and you will get a raise.

    It was a nice thought, but it doesn’t work out.

  24. By D on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Sarcasim is priceless….
    you should have came back with this line..

    Pardon me, but you’re obviously mistaking me for someone who gives a damn.

  25. By Peter in Canada on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    @Clssylssy I agree with you. No coach is going to tell the world he doesn’t like any position, especially QB. It is too much like showing your hand in a poker game. With Stanton starting we will be 4th best in our division at QB. The other three just don’t rate. We must draft a QB at some point.

  26. By Ymmy Yames on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    I am excited about the changes. People who are looking for instant turnaround are delusional. You cannot expect a roster turnover when it comes to key starting positions like this and have it go perfect right out of the gates. Couple the changes the Cardinals have made with the rest of the division all pointing up for the next 2 years, it may be a bit of a climb. But it doesn’t mean they won’t get there.

    “Have patience,” is hard to hear for fans, but that is all you can do until the Seahawks and 49ers eventually implode and the Cardinals get better as the Rams showed last year.

    And stop the nonsense freak out sessions on Arians being cool with Stanton. At least we don’t have to have a competition every training camp like the Whisenhunt days.

    I’m thinking this would be an excellent draft to trade completely out of the 1st round and pick up another 2nd rounder this year and next year’s 1st from a team hoping to get Geno Smith (Jax, Oakland, Philly) who pass on him with the first pick. I’d be fine with that.

  27. By Eazy E on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Arians will be losing his job very quickly because he is actually serious about Stanton being a candidate for the starting QB job. I’m definitely not watching that BS on sunday for 3-4 hrs. I’ve already had enough of that for the better part of 3 years or since Kurt retired. Cribbs we should get and I don’t know why if we get him he wouldn’t want him in the wildcat, it is kinda played out but Cribbs is explosive. I also don’t like the news on the fullback, sure fullbacks have a lessened role in the NFL nowadays, but what about your Power formations and Jumbo Packages?! Our O-Line was pathetic last year and he’s acting as if it was the best in the league. Indy’s O-Line was bad last year also and so we’re their running game and their D wasn’t good. When I say Andrew Luck and those WRs we’re the team, I mean it other than maybe a Mathis and Freeney.

  28. By AzDesertRat1953 on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    What is so wrong with Stanton?

    Even Brady had to start, and find out it is not so easy, NE got lucky picking Brady(#199 in the sixth) over Rattay (who?). Took Brady a year and Five games to show what he had, heck his QB rating was in the high 70’s and as low as the high 50’s, yawn.

    Not saying Stanton or any other of our QB’s is a Brady but you can not Know what you have until they are in a game, and even then it may take five games just to start to look good.

    That Is Reality.

    GO CARDS!!!

  29. By clssylssy on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Darren…agreed The Bleacher Report is just another sports rag full of opinion pieces but, tell me, these days what isn’t? has writters rating RBs who still think Hightower plays for the Cardinals, and Mike Florio reports the Owners are tabling the new helmet rule while they are in the process of passing the rule! It’s getting so any sports writer has an agenda (sports politics) and everything has to be read with skepticism. Opinions vary and nobody is every 100% in agreement but between Fox Sports, ESPN, and all the analysts on TV, fans can still see the points that MOST are in agreement about. You will notice that Bleacher Reports reposts a lot of articles from reputable news sources such as, ProFootballTalk, NOLA, etc. so, it is what it is…just say’n.
    I’ll take competition any day over maintaining the status quo…I have a feeling so would the 9ers and the Seahawks!

  30. By NYCardinals212 on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Allen Iverson once had this to say about Bleacher Report —

    “I mean, listen, we’re talking about Bleacher Report, not a game, not a game, not a game, we talking about Bleacher Report. Not a game. Not, not … Not the game that I go out there and die for and play every game like it’s my last. Not the game, but we’re talking about Bleacher Report, man. I mean, how silly is that?”

    Case closed.

  31. By Steve on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Darren: I’m starting to believe more and more that OG Chance Warmack will be the pick for Keim and Co. at number 7

  32. By donttakelosses on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    BA said he hadn’t gone over tape of any QBs “with” them, meaning together in a room, discussing their decisions, what they saw. Important distinciion to the red hatter.

  33. By Sir60 on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Our QB problems, last year, are the result of poor coaching by Miller, Grimm, the QB position coach, or the WR’s coach. Someone didn’t let the QB’s play their game. I think they were told to be extra cautious and just don’t turn the ball over and our defense will win the game for us. We saw Kolb hold the ball to long, then take a sack or run away. We saw Lyndley unable to make a decision and throwing late to recievers. Lyndley was also trying to hard and attempting to guide the ball. Skelton is the only one who seemed unaffected. He did not change his decision making, but was wildly inaccurate.

    WR’s were not on the same page with QB’s from game 6 to the end of the season. Some of that can be blamed on the quarter back shuffle and part on the coaching staff.

    Bottom line, Whiz was responsible for his coaching staff and should have seen this problem and reacted.

    So, Arians might be right. We may not need a QB, but I would love to see Geno in Cardinal red.

  34. By Todd on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    John The draft, I was just talking about the Cardinals #1 pick not the Eagles as well. The Eagles could use their #1 pick for another top player and still get Geno Smith by trading Foles and a number 4 pick for Smith after the Cardinals take him at #7. Philly needs O line help bad like the Cardinals so they could pick one of the top offensive linemen with their pick and still get Geno Smith with the Cardinals pick and not hold on to a drop back QB like Foles in the process. If they were able to get say Fisher at OT and Geno Smith both in the first round and dump the QB that doesn’t fit in Chip Kelly spread offense system (Foles) it would be a huge move for them. And the Cardinals could get a high percentage drop back passer in Foles and probably a 3rd or 4th round pick from Philly to boot for getting the Cardinals #1 pick.

  35. By lurker on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    So for the 7th pick of the draft you’d take Foles and a 3rd or a 4th? They assign values to picks. That’s the equivalent of trading a brand new sports car that could be a lemon for a station wagon and a few months of gas. I think the gm might be fired before geno smith got to the podium.

  36. By sarah on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Arians is setting himself up here for being so arrogant should golden boy be a bust, Stanton has not thrown a ball on grass in Arizona and he is crowning the guy, he actually hasn’t started an NFL game since 2010. This after 5 seasons of minimal playing time in the NFL. Let’s see what the guy has got before we annoit him king. Stanton is good in practice apparently, this is where the totality of BA’s vision of him has been while with the Colts.

    The reality is that this team will take awhile to gel and get leadership on both sides of the ball now. We need camp competition for every position.

  37. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Thanks for the game tape clarification, Darren. I’m relieved.


  38. By ored on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    most importantly we’ll be healthy with a new staff trying to be proactive instead of reactive.we can still take much from our first four starts last year,before the wheels came off.injuries and poor coaching started the downward spiral.what was remarkable was that our defense hung in there as a team the whole way and did’nt bag on the offense,it was always “win as a team or lose as a team”,great leadership,a few new faces,i like the core product already.keeping the defense strong and just improving the ground game already makes us better,i don’t think we could get worse in the passing department,so anything will be an improvement over the last 12 games.

    finding a difference making olb and some depth,our defense will once again lead the team,but that’s ok as long as we improve the offense,either ground game first or passing game first,or somehow they both click together,we’ve already flashed our character on defense,and everyone knows that “defense wins championships”,so we’ll be half way there.just please don’t try to make improvements on offense at the expense of the defense,at least that part of the team is going good.

    i also believe that our conference is going to help shape us,no weak teams to inflate stats,have to bring your “A” game every week, will either break us or make us stronger.

  39. By Cactus jeff on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Ok Cardinal fans, do you want them to take the fourth best OL or top rated DL? I go with top rated DL.

  40. By The everlasting Kolbstopper on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    I don’t know what all this fuss is about. BA has not “annoitted Stanton King” he has said he had faith in his skills to play QB. That is a huge breath of fresh air having had a coach that wouldn’t show faith in any QB. I mean how is your team supposed to rally around their field general if the head coach can’t even back the guy. That was always Whiz’s problem… I LOVE what BA is doing here. Even if Stanton doesn’t end up being this savior of a QB this season, even if he sucks it up big time, he at least put the faith in him to allow this team to rally around their QB finally and not have a divided locker room.

  41. By cooldaddy79 on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    Hey, i feel good about the changes, im no expert but it makes sense to me. He is the coach and im on board.

  42. By cooldaddy79 on Mar 20, 2013 | Reply

    this guy is not blowing himself up he is confident, and i believe we will win our division this year.

  43. By Campbells on Mar 21, 2013 | Reply

    QB competition has hurt this team for too long. Pick your man, and let him develop. We need continuity between our QB and receivers. Only way to get there is for them to spend every moment working together.
    Cribbs would be great, if healthy. Guys get hurt regularly. Having another playmaker will definitely be an asset.
    We really need O-line help. Hope we take care of it in the draft.

  44. By monzz on Mar 21, 2013 | Reply

    FINALLY we have a HC! I am so looking forward to this fall!

  45. By Frank the Tank on Mar 21, 2013 | Reply

    Honestly, he doesnt really need to go over the tape to know neither skelton or lindley has a future with the cards, he’ll play dumb and cut them during OTA’s and training camp. We’ll draft a quarterback in the 3rd or 4th round and stick with the two SPARTANS to battle for the starting job. For our sake, I hope we find a russel wilson out there that can beat them both. But this rebuilding process will take at least 2-3 years the way Arians is going about it, hopefully the Cardinals are willing to give BA that kind of time. (If not, then its back to square one)

    Sucks to see the niners, seahawks, and rams getting better while the cardinals stand still, we really need a GREAT draft

  46. By In Arians We Trust on Mar 21, 2013 | Reply

    I love Arians’ approach with the media so far. He can say whatever he wants as far as I’m concerned — some of it is probably misdirection, some of it is an effort to instill confidence in the guys he has, but honestly, getting worried about a March comment like “I don’t feel we need one” re: QB is silly.

  47. By Mike Ellingboe on Mar 21, 2013 | Reply

    @In Arians We Trust,

    but honestly, getting worried about a March comment like “I don’t feel we need one” re: QB is silly.

    Free agency officially started in March, the draft is in April, when exactly should fans be worried about the QB situation? Which, as it stands right now, is worse than it was last year (which really wouldn’t have seemed possible). A little too much status quo and compliments for the league’s worst offense for my liking. Hopefully, as a few of us are guessing, it’s a great poker face and some misdirection.

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