Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt gave a radio interview in Phoenix on Tuesday and he wasn’t shy about his feelings for the quarterbacks in the 2011 NFL Draft. Apparently, he’s not too impressed.
“There is nobody that really stands out like Sam Bradford did last year. There are a lot of guys that are intriguing athletically like Blaine Gabbert, like Cam Newton, because of the skill set, some of the things they can do. But I don’t think they have shown the ability to do some of the things that you have seen in the past by some of these guys like a Matt Ryan or, obviously, like a Sam Bradford.”
Well, one thing we know for sure is that Whisenhunt is a big fan of Sam Bradford. Oh, and not of the quarterbacks in this draft.
“There is going to be some uncertainty in the overall comparisons or even in your preparations. The one thing you know is there and some good athletes there. It’s going to come down to a grade we put on them and it’s going to be interesting how they stack up not only to other players in this draft but to other players you have had before that you have graded, other quarterbacks in the past”
The Cardinals have the No. 5 pick this year and, though they do need to upgrade the quarterback position, they also need help on the defensive side of the ball. Currently, Mel Kiper has Arizona taking Texas A&M linebacker Von Miller in his mock draft, while Todd McShay has the Cardinals taking Newton in his.
Frankly, Miller makes a ton of sense for the Cardinals. He would be a perfect fit as an outside linebacker in the team’s 3-4 scheme. Miller would provide an instant upgrade as an edge rusher for the Cardinals, while the selection of a quarterback would likely take years to yield results.
It is possible that the Cardinals are just posturing, but I seriously doubt it.
Whisenhunt later said, “We need somebody at that spot that is going to have an impact for us this year, that can make some of those plays.”
That certainly makes it seem like he wants anything other than a developmental project at quarterback.