Wednesday, October 13, 2010
AllNight audio: Cardinals' QB situation
By Mike Sando
My weekly conversation with ESPN AllNight host Jason Smith focused on the San Francisco 49ers and Arizona Cardinals coming out of Week 5.
My thoughts on the Cardinals' decision to start Max Hall at quarterback:
We know what Derek Anderson can do. They know Derek Anderson is not going to be the starter beyond this season. They need to find out over the remainder of this season, what is Max Hall? Is he a potential No. 2 next year? Is he going to grow into being a starter, somebody you feel comfortable with as an ascending player? I think that is what you have to find out. And if he doesn't pan out and just becomes awful at some point, maybe you have to play Derek Anderson, maybe you take a look at John Skelton. But just staying the course with Derek Anderson, they saw where that was headed and didn't see the improvement taking place.
That last part -- the lack of improvement -- was what made the decision easier.
Hall is much less a finished product, so if he struggles some, it's more understandable. But coach Ken Whisenhunt said Monday he expects Hall to improve by avoiding some of the mistakes he made against New Orleans, including when Hall forced a pass to a double-covered Larry Fitzgerald even though Max Komar was wide open (the defensive back covering Komar slipped on the play). The Saints picked off the pass.
Getting the ball to Fiztgerald needs to be a priority and Hall did a good job making sure key throws went to the Cardinals' best receiver. It's also important for Hall to see more of the field before locking onto a receiver. The mistake to Fitzgerald came on the Cardinals' first possession. Hall was not intercepted again.