Several days ago, Arizona Cardinals fans booed QB Kevin Kolb at their Wednesday night Fan Fest practice. Kolb struggled to get a grasp of the Cardinals offense last season, but did he deserve to be booed at a practice after throwing an interception? Arizona has struggled to find a quarterback after the retirement of Kurt Warner, but Kolb deserves to get the benefit of the doubt heading into his second season.
Kolb was acquired via a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles last season and the Cardinals immediately gave the signal caller a $63 million dollar extension. The offseason last year was truncated by the owner’s lockout and coaching staffs were prohibited from having contact with players and all player movement was curtailed before a new Collective Bargaining Agreement had been reached.
Kolb had just four weeks in order to digest the Cardinals playbook and create a chemistry with his new receivers. Kolb struggled to stay on the field after suffering a turf toe injury and later, a concussion. John Skelton supplanted Kolb in the offense and led the team to five of their eight wins last season. While Skelton did lead the team to five victories, his play on the field wasn’t devoid of flaws either. Skelton threw multiple interceptions in five games.
Kolb is in a dogfight to gain the starting nod by the Cardinals and perhaps fighting for his future with Arizona after this season. He did not deserve to be booed during a practice however. Practice is after all, practice. You are supposed to learn from your mistakes and if you make them, you want to make them in practice.
I understand the Cardinals fan base’s frustration over the inconsistent quarterback play. Kolb has now had a complete season and offseason in the Cardinals offense. If he fails to grasp the system and continues to underachieve in 2012, then decisions must be made regarding his future with the franchise. Cut Kolb some slack and allow him some latitude to develop. The coaching staff saw something they liked in Kolb’s play while he was with the Eagles, give him an opportunity to show what those things are on the field for the Cardinals in 2012. If he continues to struggle, all bets are off.