Arizona Cardinals Question Of The Day: Should Ken Whisenhunt Regret Releasing Matt Leinart?

Another quick question for everyone, and I am bringing this up because of recent statements by Coach Whisenhunt during a press conference that you can find in this article. In this article, Whisenhunt talks about how tough it is to replace a future Hall of Fame Quarterback like Kurt Warner, and he admits that some of the struggles the Cardinals have had this year are due to poor play by Derek Anderson and Max Hall.

Here is his quote regarding the Quarterback play.

"The bottom line is that position has not performed for us at anywhere near the level we needed it to perform," Whisenhunt said. "We haven't been able to compensate well enough in other areas to allow that. So what have I learned? I've learned it's tough when you lose a quarterback like Kurt and to have somebody come in and play at the level you are used to."

And here is what he said about if he regrets the decision he made with Matt Leinart.

"That, I guess, is the thing to talk about now. Obviously, it's easy to second-guess now because it hasn't worked out the way any of us had hoped or had thought it was going to. But I can't go back and say now that you would do anything differently because the dynamic's different now."

Now, we all know what happened with Leinart during the Preseason. Ever since Warner retired until after the Preseason game against the Titans Coach Whiz acted like Leinart was the guy even though it seems obvious now that he was never happy with him. After months of hearing about how happy he was with Leinart's development, and hearing about how he outperformed all of the other Quarterbacks in Training Camp from people like Kent Somers and Darren Urban. Then we go on to the switch to Derek Anderson because Whiz wanted to see more First Downs (Yeah, that really worked out so well with DA didn't it?) and Leinart got upset because he felt like he wasn't getting enough chances in the Preseason compared to what Anderson was getting (Leinart only threw 28 passes compared to 56 for Anderson in the Preseason), he also felt like he had outplayed Anderson (the stats for the two of them: Leinart was 22 of 28 for 175 yards and a Touchdown with a Quarterback Rating of 104.6, Anderson was 33 of 56 for 334 yards with two Touchdowns and two Picks with a Quarterback Rating of 73.1), and he said that he wished that Coach Whiz would have told him that there would have been a competition between him and Anderson from the beginning. After Leinart also said that he thought there was something personal involved in the decision that Whiz made the writing was pretty much on the wall, and a couple of weeks later Leinart was released and he is currently the third string Quarterback in Houston behind Matt Schaub and Dan Orlovsky (Not that being the third stringer is a bad thing, Orlovsky has been in the system longer than him, so it is understandable that Leinart needs to work his way up considering that he hasn't been there very long).

Now, a lot of people here are still divided on Leinart, he is basically a guy that the fanbase either loved or hated during his time here, and besides his rookie year where he played well on a bad team, and in his second season where he struggled after trying to learn a new offense (That is basically Alex Smith's entire career) once Whisenhunt came in before going down for the year with a broken collarbone in week 5. His supporters would say that he has been in the system for a long time, he knows the offense, he knows the players around him, he is more accurate than Anderson (particularly on the shorter passes), he would make the easy throws that Anderson and Hall have been missing, he played well in the only game he started in last season (a last second loss to the Titans), and he was also able to learn a lot behind Kurt Warner so it would have been nice to see if he could put what he learned to good use. But the people who don't support him can also say that he checks down too much, he only has average arm strength, he can't make as many of the deep throws as the ones Derek Anderson can make (or try to make), he is too laid back, the team doesn't believe in him, and he had enough chances that he wasn't able to capitalize on so why should he get another chance. There are also some questions on if he ever fully recovered from his collarbone injury in 2007, mentally and physically.

Either way, I just wish that he would have gotten a chance in the regular season to see if he could get it done or not. If he played well, good. And if he played badly, then he could have just been released after this season before he would get the big bonus in the final year of his contract. Either way, right now Whisenhunt's decision to go with Anderson and two rookies does not look very good right now.

I will say that I am interested in seeing what Leinart does in the future. If there isn't a team that is willing to offer him a starting job, I think that he could stay with the Texans and possibly move up to second on the depth chart, or he could go to Kansas City to be with Todd Haley and the Chiefs run an offense that I think fits Leinart's strengths pretty well.

So, lets get to what you guys think. Should Whisenhunt regret releasing Matt Leinart? Would he have been better or worse than Derek Anderson? Or with all the holes on this team right now, would it matter at all who the Quarterback is because it would probably be a bad year no matter who was under center? Is he laughing in his hot tub with some attractive women at how poorly the Anderson decision has worked out for the Cardinals? Give me your thoughts.

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