Arizona Cardinals: 3 Reasons Why They Can't Win with John Skelton at QB
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The Arizona Cardinals are spiraling downward quickly for a number of reasons, but it remains clear that with John Skelton at the helm, the Cards’ playoff hopes are going to continue diminishing by the week.
As a matter of fact, Arizona won’t even finish within the top two in the NFC West.
After beginning the season a perfect 4-0, the Cards have fallen in each of their last five games, and it doesn’t get much easier from here.
While the Cardinals’ problems don’t end with just Skelton, he has proven in a variety of ways why he cannot lead this Arizona team to victory in 2012, and I will tell you why, using my brand new Triple S System: Scoring, Stats and Schedule.
John Skelton getting sacked by Green Bay LB Clay Matthews.
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Let’s face it, the Cardinals can’t score, and it all starts with Skelton.
According to Jeremy Foster of Arizona Sports, the Cardinals had scored a total of 33 first quarter points in Skelton’s 14 career starts coming into Sunday’s loss to Green Bay.
The trend continued this week against the Packers, as Skelton and the Cardinals’ offense once again failed to score early.
If the Cardinals want to have even a remote chance of keeping up with the top teams in the NFC, they have to find a way to get some points on the scoreboard.
Skelton attempting a pass in Minnesota against the Vikings.
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The stats are clear.
John Skelton ranks dead last among all qualifying NFL quarterbacks with a 65.8 quarterback rating—lower than both Cleveland Browns’ rookie Brandon Weeden (67.9) and Jacksonville Jaguars’ Blaine Gabbert (78.4).
The El Paso, Tx. native has also completed just 55.8 percent of his passes while throwing an interception in each of the five games he has played in this season.
It is true, however, that the Cardinals’ offensive line can be much to blame for part of Skelton’s struggles. They are easily the worst line in the NFL and give him absolutely no time to throw.
Regardless, with veteran wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald on the wing and the young and extremely talented Andre Roberts on the other side, it shouldn’t be this difficult to rack up some fantasy-worthy numbers.
John Skelton getting sacked in a game against the 49ers.
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As mentioned in the intro, the Cardinals’ remaining schedule features some of the best teams in the NFC, which in part means some of the league’s best defenses.
Of the seven teams John Skelton will face, five rank within the top 13 defenses in the NFL.
In Week 11, Arizona goes up against a ballhawking Atlanta Falcons secondary that has 10 interceptions and allowed the second fewest touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks this season (seven).
In the final two weeks of the season, Skelton will also see a Chicago Bears defense that leads the league in takeaways, and a San Francisco defense that held Arizona to a measly three points in an embarrassing loss at home on Monday Night Football.
Thanks to a lackluster offensive line and poor pocket awareness, Skelton doesn’t stand a chance against the NFC elite.