A lot of the experience Kurt is talking about (that Leinart didn't get) is due to him," Fitzgerald said. "Kurt) is a Hall of Fame player and Matt Leinart, having to back him up for so many years, it"s made it difficult. It"s not about Matt Leinart not being able to play. I just think it"s been how good Kurt"s been able to play. He really set the bar high."
Patrick followed up by asking Fitz if he knew what he is getting with Leinart as starting QB.
"I am getting a guy who has been here four years now, who studied, who is prepared and who is willing and eager to take on the role of starting quarterback," Fitzgerald said. "I am going to do everything in my power to expedite the process by going out and making plays and I think my teammates feel the same way."
Matt Leinart started one game last season - week 12 at the Tennessee Titans. Leinart was 21 of 31 for 220 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions. He hasn't started a full season in his four year career, largely because of broken collarbone he suffered in 2007 and the presence of future Hall of Fame quarterback Kurt Warner.
With Kurt Warner retiring and Brian St. Pierre becoming a free agent, Leinart is the only quarterback signed to a contract next year. The Cardinals will likely bring in a veteran to push Leinart, and are expected to draft a quarterback in the later rounds.
With Larry Fitzgerald, Anquan Boldin, Steve Breaston, and the emergence of a running game, now is the best time for Leinart to lock a firm grasp as the Cardinals quarterback of the future. If not, Leinart's contract balloons in 2012 and it would be inevitable for him to be released or traded at that time.