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A look at the hanging quarterback situations around the league

Matt Hasselbeck, Dwight Freeney, Fili Moala AP

The Titans, Bears, Cardinals both remain in the playoff race with two weeks left. It’s uncertain what quarterback will lead the teams into Week 16.

Here’s a quick look at hanging quarterback situations around the league, including one non playoff contender.

Tennessee: Titans coach Mike Munchak wouldn’t commit to Matt Hasselbeck as his starter next week, which is a change from previous policy.

Jake Locker has looked good in relief efforts and Hasselbeck isn’t 100% healthy because of his calf injury. We’d guess that Locker gets the call against the Jaguars this week.

Arizona: The Cardinals are 5-1 with John Skelton taking the majority of snaps and 2-5 with Kevin Kolb. It’s uncertain who will start if Kolb is fully healthy this week, but Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic believes it will be Kolb. Despite Skeltonmania.

Ken Whisenhunt didn’t give much away on Monday, but Kolb was still struggling with post-concussion symptoms on Sunday.

The “all he does is win” argument is a facile one in any city. A lot goes into a quarterback’s record. The problem for coach Ken Whisenhunt is that his highly priced “franchise quarterback” and his second-year backup look roughly equal in talent.

Chicago: For now, Caleb Hanie remains the starter. Bears coach Lovie Smith didn’t seem to close the book on that changing during the week.

Cleveland: Browns coach Pat Shurmur admitted that Seneca Wallace could start next week, even if Colt McCoy is healthy enough to go. This decision could impact the playoff race because the Browns are in Baltimore this week.

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22 Responses to “A look at the hanging quarterback situations around the league”
  1. silverbackdk says: Dec 19, 2011 1:18 PM

    Records doesn’t tell the full story. Cards defense has been a lot better in most of Skelton’s starts. And even if Skelton is improved, Kolb is the better player – he did play well and win vs. Cowboys

  2. trbowman says: Dec 19, 2011 1:29 PM

    Hasselbeck’s done. When the coach doesn’t immediately commit to the incumbent, it’s pretty much a sure fire sign he’s done.

    Using the record to compare Kolb and Skelton is idiotic. Kolb is the better player by a wide margin. The difference between them is that the defense, which played well against the Cowboys when Kolb was playing, too.

    Chicago needs to turn the page on Caleb Hanie, even if it means turning to Josh McCown.

    Cleveland will get Matt Flynn this off-season. McCoy is not even close to an answer.

  3. roxtar10 says: Dec 19, 2011 1:34 PM

    Sorry – the Titans, Bears and Cardinals BOTH are in the playoff hunt? Did we change the word “both” to include three teams?

  4. vegaskid21 says: Dec 19, 2011 1:35 PM

    Cardinals are in the playoff race? When did this happen?

  5. j0esixpack says: Dec 19, 2011 1:39 PM

    Glad to hear that there’s apparently no question who will be playing QB in Indianapolis long term.

    Can you refresh my memory?

    Was it Manning or Luck?

  6. earthtopft says: Dec 19, 2011 1:41 PM

    Half the league’s Qbs in the infirmary, with a couple months left to play, and everyone slamming Gabbert for being overly cautious in the pocket. I think he is just smarter than the rest of them, myself.

  7. twesty85 says: Dec 19, 2011 1:57 PM

    every team is in the playoff race until they are mathematically eliminated. it’s never a lock until a division or wild card spot has been officially clinched.

  8. jutts says: Dec 19, 2011 2:09 PM

    The Bears may as well start their rookie. It seems to me that he should know the offense better than a guy who just signed. Nate Enderle may not be any good but you might want to find out. Before its too late, like right now. Josh Mckown is not the answer. I sure hope George Mckaskey is got more sense to let this crap go on.

  9. tjstyles says: Dec 19, 2011 2:25 PM

    While Kolb might be significantly better than Skelton, the fact of the matter is that Kolb is not a very good QB. Right now Kolb is sitting at Passer Rating of 81.1, which is significantly better than his 5-year career average of 76.7. For this season, he is 19th in the league for Passer Rating of any QB with at least 100 passing attempts, and he is behind Dan Orlovsky, Tim Tebow and Donovan McNabb.

    If Kolb is healthy, the Cardinals will start him. They basically have to. They went and traded a lot of assets and gave a huge contract to someone who’s stats were worse than Tarvaris Jackson. If you only look at highlight reels, any QB can look like Tom Brady. Draft potential; Pay production. But, because of the situation I think Kolb will be the starter if he can be the starter.

    I also think it is interesting that the defense gets all of the “credit” for the wins Skelton has. While there will obvously be some variation from game to game with the overall performance of the defense, the offense has a huge impact on how the defense plays. If the offense wins the time of posession battle, the defense plays better. If the offense can get drives at least to the opposing side of the field, the defense is not stuck trying to defend a short field. If the offense can put points on the board, the defense does not have to play from behind. I am not saying that Skelton makes the defense play better, or that other players like Wells and Fitzgerald aren’t more important in getting the first downs that extend drives. I am just saying that it is not as black and white as “the defense won those games”. One could argue the defense won Kolb’s games as well.

  10. cynicalvision says: Dec 19, 2011 2:27 PM

    This is exactly why we don’t need an 18 game schedule. There’s maybe 20 humans in the world at any given time capable of playing QB well at the NFL level and half of them can’t even make it through a full season. No one wants to pay full price to watch some scrub throw 3 picks.

  11. thenofunleague says: Dec 19, 2011 2:49 PM

    Thaddeus Lewis

    That is a name I believe everyone needs to familiarize themselves with. This is the 3rd string QB for Cleveland. Who may see some play time these next two weeks.

    Next week Cleveland gets to face an angry embarrassed Baltimore defense. Sounds fun. Even more so if Pitt beats SF on Monday and Baltimore is chasing Pitt again for that #1 seat. Fun Fun.

    The following week Cleveland gets to face Pitt again and depending on the SF game, will need a victory to stay ahead of Baltimore. Not to mention they will be looking for some payback again Cleveland’s “running backs”.

    Ya … good times in Cleveland.

  12. Soulman45 says: Dec 19, 2011 3:27 PM

    Is anybody still asking who drafted the best QB the Lions or the Jets?

  13. greenbayraven says: Dec 19, 2011 3:52 PM

    As a Ravens fan and a Flacco supporter are the Ravens going to look to address the qb situation for the future? Still think Flacco can do it but his leash is getting short with this Ravens fan………….

  14. ttfunk says: Dec 19, 2011 4:22 PM

    Records doesn’t tell the full story.
    —————————————-

    And neither do you…you’s…do not…don’t….don’t’s uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhh

  15. irishnativeson says: Dec 19, 2011 4:51 PM

    cynicalvision says: Dec 19, 2011 2:27 PM

    “This is exactly why we don’t need an 18 game schedule. There’s maybe 20 humans in the world at any given time capable of playing QB well at the NFL level and half of them can’t even make it through a full season. No one wants to pay full price to watch some scrub throw 3 picks.”

    And even fewer competent blindside Guard, Tackle combos.

  16. jimmysimpson55 says: Dec 19, 2011 5:05 PM

    As a Chief’s fan, please someone, take Cassel off our hands.

  17. franknunley57 says: Dec 19, 2011 5:17 PM

    Include The 49ers. Harbaugh will make a change @ qb. Book that.

  18. vegasbronco says: Dec 19, 2011 5:28 PM

    AND Denver, who should win the West, but without a viable QB, will be done in the playoffs.
    “you have to throw the ball to be successful in this league” – John Elway who has a QB with 37.8% cmp in 3 qtrs, and 60.4% in 4th qtr.

  19. westclaims says: Dec 19, 2011 7:17 PM

    As usual, this needs to be said again….Kolb needs a full off season with this team and this system, before you can judge where he is at with it. Skelton had

  20. westclaims says: Dec 19, 2011 7:20 PM

    As usual, this needs to be said again….Kolb needs a full off season with this team and this system, before you can judge where he is at with it.

    Skelton had a full off season last year, plus a full regular season to learn it.

    Kolb deserves the same before he is judged. But so many Cards haters are just dying to say it was a bad trade, that they don’t wait to judge fairly.

    By the way, how’s DRC doing in Philly?

  21. bleed4philly says: Dec 19, 2011 9:02 PM

    Locker should be starting. He was the best QB taken in the draft last year and he will have the best career, better than newton, ponder, and Dalton. Mark it down. Dislike this comment all you want, just remember, you heard it beforehand on pft.

  22. boilerup1869 says: Dec 20, 2011 12:49 AM

    I hate you, Caleb Hanie

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