It has been well-documented over the course of the past year, the quarterback position has been a disaster for the Arizona Cardinals. If we go all the way back to the preseason, since Kurt Warner decided to call it a career and trade in his helmet for dancing shoes and then TV makeup, Arizona had four starting quarterbacks and five that played. It started with Matt Leinart, then went to Derek Anderson, then to Max Hall, then back to Anderson, who later gave way to John Skelton.
Add in Richard Bartel to the mix, who also got playing time, and you have yourself quite the infamous group of quarterbacks.
Now, for months now and especially in the last weeks, we have all been discussing who will be the Cardinals next starting quarterback. We have our top-five list, we look at whether Kevin Kolb is the guy, whether it is Kyle Orton, whether the team should draft Blaine Gabbert or Cam Newton or whether Marc Bulger is the answer.
The starting quarterback is important. Obviously it is. However, with as much as we have all made our cases about the starter, there is a smaller, yet pertinent question. Who will be number two?
Bear with me. Even if the Cardinals somehow fix their hole at quarterback, there remains the need for a reliable backup. All it takes is something small to require the backup to end up on the field. The situation is different, obviously. The number two guy is typically one of two things: a young quarterback who is still biding his time to become a starter. With that situation, fans cringe at the thought of relying on him.
There is also the former starter in decline. This seems to be the most comfortable of the choices. This guy has been through it all and now is simply overcome by a new stud or is ready to play more the teacher role. This quarterback you can rely on being ready and able to handle running the team's offense. If he needs to start a game or two, you hope that all will go okay, but this quarterback is the "caretaking" QB because he his job is to keep things OK until the starter is back.
There is the rare case of having a starting caliber backup. This hardly ever happens. The Eagles ran across it by accident this season.
The Cardinals have no real starter yet, but they do have two developmental quarterbacks in John Skelton and Max Hall. They do have a grizzled veteran that has had success in the past in Derek Anderson. They certainly do not have a guy you would think would have success.
We all know that the Cards are going to address the starting quarterback, but who should be number two? Do you trust John Skelton to be that guy?
Should they keep around Derek Anderson, despite his $4.25 million due to him in 2011. Remember that, while that may sound pricey for a backup, but Kurt Warner signed as a backup originally and got paid $5 million per year.
Should Richard Bartel get the nod (and do keep in mind that he wasn't even starting in the UFL)?
Should the team bring in another guy? Is so, who? Do note, though, that if there ends up being a lockout, there will be little time to learn a playbook.
If this is the case, Anderson (gasp) is probably the best option because he already is familiar with the playcalling and has started before. John Skelton still need another year before he will be where is ready to be a full-tine starting QB.
Now the vote is for you!