The Arizona Cardinals know who their starting quarterback is in Drew Stanton now that Carson Palmer is out for the rest of the season with a torn ACL. Who will be the number two is perhaps a little more fluid, according to head coach Bruce Arians (via AZCardinals.com).
Rookie Logan Thomas was behind Stanton on the depth chart all season. The Cardinals recently added Ryan Lindley to the active roster, who was drafted by Arizona and was on the roster for two seasons.
Arians made the decision to keep Thomas over Lindley in the preseason, although he was nothing other than complimentary of the former sixth round pick the entire time he was here.
Lindley might end up being the number two.
"That's yet to be determined right now," said Arians when asked who would be the No. 2 quarterback. "Today, Logan is the backup and we'll see how Ryan progresses back into our offense having been out a while."
Why the uncertainty?
I don't know if this is so much about who is the better overall QB or who has the highest ceiling as a player. I think Arians is looking at the situation as who is the better option to get the team through a game.
Lindley knows the offense very well. He is a great guy in the locker room, practice field and classroom. He has game experience in the league as a starter, even though the numbers are bad.
If Stanton were to get hurt in a game like he did in Denver, who would be the best option to replace him?
That might be Lindley. We saw Thomas in game action and he had one absolutely majestic throw...and seven throws that were bad. The game was really fast for him.
As a backup, Lindley is probably the better option. But if Stanton were unable to start, Thomas is probably the guy who should start to replace him. After all, he was drafted to perhaps be a starting quarterback. Why not see what he can do?
Of course, in the middle of the playoff race, you also want the guy that will give the team the best shot at winning now, rather than looking to develop a guy.
If you were Arians, would you go with Thomas or Lindley as the number two guy?