I'd have a hard time convincing most that the Cards are the best team in the NFC West. They may or may not be, but that's not what this is about. It's about who's the best gunslinger in the west !
Last year we saw the rookie Russel Wilson rise above all expectations. In fact; rumor from Seattle now is that he's grown to 6'-2" and has re-written the play book for Pete Carol to study, but I digress. Russel Wilson did a fantastic job as a rookie leading his team into the playoffs with an 11-5 record. And to think; Seattle had a worse record (7-9) than the Cards (8-8) just 1 year prior. What a difference a year makes, what a difference a QB makes. Still Russelmania might be less manic than some might think.
Last year we also saw Colin Kapernick take the league by storm after coming in and taking over the starting nod in game 9 of the regular season. He performed admirably in replacement of Alex Smith and held on to the starting job because of his athletic ability and the rocket launcher attached to his right shoulder. Rumor from SF is that he's faster than a speeding bullet and more powerful than a locomotive. Still Kap was not as superman as some might think.
The other NFC West team; the cellar dwelling Rams surprised all with a new, experienced and good coaching regime as well as a healthy and improved Sam Bradford. Bouncing back from concussion, Bradford had his most consistent year as a Ram. He managed to lead his team to a 1-0-1 record against the division winning 9ers on route to a 7-8-1 record and the best record within the division. Rumor is in St. Louis that Bradford's crossed eyes are aligning to normal. Bradford may or may not have reached his potential in his 3rd season.
This brings us home to our very own Arizona Cardinals who basically acquired Carson Palmer for a Ham Sandwich, ( with mustard as I was reminded by another member ), in the off season. The Cardinals, who had a pluthera of injuries and a QB carousel that went round and round looked poise to take the division after a 4-0 start which quickly went south after the Offense struggled to do anything in the pass and run game. We were so bad on offense that at one point in a game, Senio Kelemente our backup guard, may have been our leading receiver for the game.
This isn't about tall 5'10"guys or players who have donned a red cape or perfect alignment of the eyeballs or even ham sandwiches. I will also say this isn't about rushing yards and rushing touch downs either because we all know the definition of a quarterback, in simple terms, is the guy on his football team that throws the ball. Check out the passing numbers...
Note CP's numbers have been averaged over his entire career and are pretty close to his 2012 season.
Carson Palmer has thrown for more yardage in than Russell Wilson, Colin Kapernick ( averaging out his season ), and Sam Bradford based on 2012 numbers. Here are the numbers: CP: 4250 > SB: 3702> CK: 3450> RW: 3118>>
Carson Palmer was 2nd in touchdowns. Here are the numbers:> RW: 26> CP: 25> SB: 21> CK: 20>
>> Carson Palmer was last in interceptions. I will say with this stat that the Seahawks and the 49ers asked their QB's to do a lot less in the passing game than Bradford and Palmer. Here are the numbers: > CK: 6> SB: 13> RW: 10> CP: 17>
>> So who's the best quarterback in the NFC West ? Carson Palmer ? It's really difficult to say at this point. Where Palmer has longevity and consistency on his side as a passer; Wilson and Kapernick still carry the stigma of 1st year QB's and Bradford is just now getting targets to throw to. One things for certain. These QB's will make the NFC West very interesting this year and a challenge for all teams.>>
What are your thoughts ?