Quarterback could derail Cardinals’ season before it gets started

Merry training camp season, everyone. It’s been a long offseason, but football is finally gearing up again and to celebrate I’m rolling out a new series on TSR entitled “2010 NFL Question Marks,” where I discuss one or two of the biggest concerns that teams have heading into the new season. Granted, some teams have more issues than others, but I’ll primarily be focusing on the biggest problem areas. Today I’ll be discussing the Cardinals massive issues at the quarterback position.

The Cardinals have a couple of weakness that could be discussed, including offensive tackle, cornerback and inside linebacker. But none of them will impact their chances this season like the quarterback position will.

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Anderson regrets saying that Brown fans “don’t deserve a winner”

Following his release on Tuesday, former Browns quarterback Derek Anderson had some parting words for Cleveland fans.

From ESPN.com:

“The fans are ruthless and don’t deserve a winner,” Anderson said in the e-mail Tuesday. “I will never forget getting cheered when I was injured.

“I know at times I wasn’t great. I hope and pray I’m playing when my team comes to town and [we] roll them.”

On Wednesday, Anderson was already regretting his words:

“I said some things to [News-Herald reporter] Jeff Schudel earlier that I regret,” Anderson said. “Those of you who got to know me personally from covering the Browns over the past five years, know this was out of character for me. I wasn’t taken out of context, but I was speaking out of frustration after my career with the Browns came to a close.

“I had some great times playing in Cleveland, especially during the 2007 season, and I met some great people and made many lifelong friends along the way,” Anderson said Wednesday. “I’m looking forward to starting a new chapter in my life.”

The Cleveland fans that cheered him when he got hurt in 2008 were ruthless and D.A. deserved to take some parting shots at those particular idiots. But I’m sorry, any quarterback that only completes 44.5 percent of his passes and finishes with a QB Rating of 42.1 should just shut his mouth and pray that he finds employment elsewhere. He was absolutely filthy atrocious last year and no Brown fan will miss him.

On a related note, the Cardinals may look to sign Anderson to compete with Matt Leinart this season. He has a visit set up with the Seahawks on Thursday and will meet with the Cards on Friday.

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Does the Wallace trade signal that the Seahawks will draft a QB?

On Monday night, the Browns acquired quarterback Seneca Wallace from the Seahawks in exchange for a conditional pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.

What this trade means for the Browns is pretty simple: they get a veteran quarterback who is familiar with Mike Holmgren’s offense and who could pave the way for the release of Derek Anderson. Wallace has little upside at this point, but he’s a stable backup that can keep the team competitive if he’s forced into action.

For the Seahawks, this trade potentially means much more. There has been plenty of speculation that the Hawks will draft a quarterback at some point during April’s draft and this trade may open the door wider for that possibility. Given Matt Hasselbeck’s age (34), it would make sense that Seattle would draft their franchise quarterback this year and have him learn under Hasselbeck for a season or two until he’s ready to take over the reins.

Now, this doesn’t mean that the Seahawks will target a QB at No. 6, although that’s certainly a possibility. If they wait, they could still target a signal caller like Colt McCoy (assuming he’s available of course) with their second round pick (No. 40 overall). One would think that if they were to draft a quarterback this April, it would be with one of their first two picks.

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Browns involved in trade talks for QBs?

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Browns have been in discussions with multiple teams in regards to trading for a quarterback.

According to a league source with knowledge of the situation, the Browns are discussing quarterbacks “on different levels.” It appears the Browns have concluded they are more apt to upgrade the quarterback position through trade rather than free agency.

Since President Mike Holmgren and General Manager Tom Heckert joined forces to take over Browns operations, they have talked of improving the offense in general and the quarterback position in particular. They naturally have been linked to passers on their former teams — Matt Hasselbeck of Seattle, and Donovan McNabb or Kevin Kolb of Philadelphia.

The Browns are expected to soon part ways with Derek Anderson, who is owed a $2 million roster bonus on March 19. There is also the possibility that Brady Quinn could garner some interest in a trade.

Given Holmgren’s history with the West Coast Offense and Heckert’s relationship with Philadelphia, the Eagles are a logical trading partner for the Browns. But it’s unlikely that the Eagles would part with Kolb and it’s even more unlikely that Holmgren would trade the No. 7 overall pick for McNabb. So are the Eagles and Browns actually a fit in the end? That’s debatable.

If the Browns do wind up making a move for a veteran QB, it would be surprising if Quinn weren’t involved in the deal. Holmgren won’t part with his top pick unless he can get a first rounder in return, thus it makes more sense that Quinn would be one of his biggest bargaining chips.

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Quinn or Anderson to be gone this summer?

As Mike Holmgren enters his first offseason with the Browns, one of his biggest question marks is what to do at quarterback. With the way head coach Eric Mangini couldn’t make a decision regarding the position last year, Holmgren will have to decide whether or not to get rid of Brady Quinn or Derek Anderson, if not both and completely start over under center next year.

Holmgren recently spoke about the topic on WKNR earlier this week:

“Right now, I don’t know the situation quite well enough. I’ve been busy doing other things. Everyone knows that position is the most important position on a team. Is the quarterback of the Browns here already? Maybe. If not, then we’ll have to go free agency or draft. We’ll see.”

That doesn’t sound like a man that’s settled on any decision, making the quarterback position an interesting dilemma this offseason for Holmgren and the Browns.

Quinn was an utter disaster earlier in the year before Mangini replaced him with Anderson. But the unthinkable happened and Anderson was actually worse than Quinn was, forcing Mangini to once again start the first round pick.

Much like the entire team, Quinn played better down the stretch and actually looked like he started to gain confidence. But for the second time in two years, Quinn finished the season on IR after he suffered a season-ending foot injury in a win over the Chiefs late in the year.

Holmgren is making a wise decision by not committing to either quarterback, seeing as how neither of them have stepped up and grabbed the reins of the position. Chances are that Holmgren doesn’t view either of them as the long-term answer at quarterback and therefore, he might look to draft or acquire a signal caller this offseason. If he drafts a QB, he could part with either Quinn or Anderson and have the other one start until the rookie is ready to play.

We’ll see how Holmgren approaches this topic over the next couple months.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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