Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Hope for Kevin Kolb? A striking comparison
By Mike Sando
Arizona Cardinals fans suffering through a 1-6 start must realize the 2011 season isn't going to produce a playoff berth.
They should happily settle for a little hope on the quarterback front.
Kevin Kolb's first seven games with the team have warmed seats beneath the Cardinals' leadership while threatening to empty them at University of Phoenix Stadium.
An email from Rodney Lakin of arizonasports.com pointed to striking similarities between the first seven starts for Kolb and the first seven for Matt Cassel in Kansas City.
Cassel hasn't turned into one of the all-time greats, but he was good enough for the Chiefs to go 10-6 in his second season as their starter. He's been good enough for them to win four in a row to get back in the AFC West race this season.
The chart compares Cassel's first seven games in Kansas City with Kolb's first seven in Arizona. Both were 27 years old. Both had signed monster contracts.
Cassel had additional experience, having posted a 10-5 record as a starter with New England in 2008. Kolb had only seven starts for Philadelphia.
But everything else lines up pretty closely. Cassel had a better touchdown-to-interception ratio. Kolb has averaged significantly greater yards per attempt. The sack numbers are similar. Their NFL passer ratings are nearly identical and Kolb has actually been slightly better as measured by Total QBR, which factors for additional criteria.
Cassel has 42 touchdowns, 27 interceptions and a 17-13 starting record since going 1-6 in his first seven starts with the Chiefs. The Cardinals would settle for that.