Derek Anderson Flies off the Handle: What's Next for the Arizona Cardinals QB?

Jesse DorseyFeatured ColumnistNovember 30, 2010

Derek Anderson Flies off the Handle: What's Next for the Arizona Cardinals QB?

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    Derek Anderson, the quarterback of the Arizona Cardinals, is taking a lot of flak for his post-Monday Night Football rant last night when he went off on a reporter for questioning his dedication to his football team.

    After he was spotted laughing on the sidelines in the fourth quarter with offensive lineman Deuce Lutui, a reporter asked him why he was laughing with his team down 18 points.

    After being poked and prodded toward explaining himself, he let loose, absolutely freaking out before storming out of the press conference.

    Anderson has been anything but impressive this season, with only three games with a quarterback rating above 80.

    Needless to say, that is terrible.

    So, let's take a look at Anderson's chances of staying in the desert into next season, and where he could end up if he is done in Arizona.

First, the Rant

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    Every time there is a good old fashioned rant in the NFL, the world stops for a second and every football fan on the planet smiles.

    It is easily one of the best parts of football.

    First, we have a prodding reporter who is seemingly fed up with watching a multimillionaire throw more interceptions than touchdowns who gets Anderson's blood boiling.

    Then, as Anderson realizes what he is asking, his blood pressure starts to go up, his eyes bulge and the censor gets some work to do.

    Then, in an attempt to sound threatening, he comes across as goofy sounding and, as quickly as his anger arose, he stormed off.

    It was everything a good rant should be, it was goofy, there were ample bleeps, there was a crazy-eyed dude and a nice storm off.

    It was the best rant to come out of the desert since Dennis Green's, "The Bears are who we thought they were!" rant.

Is There Value Left in Anderson?

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    Derek Anderson signed a two-year deal back in March, and he is not yet a year into this deal, much to the chagrin of Cardinals fans.

    He has had one real above average game this season. In Week 1 against St. Louis, Anderson threw for 297 yards and a touchdown with an 85.1 QB rating.

    Anderson hasn't had a QB rating of over 100 since Week 6 of 2008 when he threw for 310 yards and two touchdowns against the Giants (that was also his last 300-yard game).

    He was a Pro Bowler in 2007 with over 3,700 yards and 29 touchdowns against 19 interceptions, and was easily his best season to date.

    The confusing thing is how quickly he fell off the wagon.

    Since 2007 he has had only 4,400 yards and 19 touchdowns against 27 interceptions.

    In 2007 he was on a Browns team with a formidable offensive attack, with Jamal Lewis rushing for 1,300 yards and two receivers, Braylon Edwards and Kellen Winslow, grabbing 1000 yards with 80 catches each.

    It seems that Anderson can be a good quarterback, but he needs a good offense with capable receivers and running backs surrounding him. He cannot be the best offensive player on a good team.

Future With 'Zona?

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    Anderson is a borderline headcase.

    When he has had troubles in the past, he has been unable to recover from mental problems when he was with the Browns.

    After struggling in the beginning of 2008, he was benched in favor of rookie Brady Quinn after Quinn had impressed coaches in practice while Anderson was out with a concussion.

    They then switched back to Anderson and proceeded to switch a few more times over 2008 and 2009, something that Anderson did not take too well, leading to his down performance.

    If the Cardinals were to get anything positive out of Anderson, they must tell him that he will be their quarterback, and he wouldn't be benched again in favor of rookie Max Hall.

    If the Cardinals aren't dedicated to Anderson being a part of their future, they would be wise to deal him this offseason. Otherwise, he could become a cancer in the clubhouse.

Team That Could Use Him As a Backup

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    Derek Anderson could easily be one of the best backup quarterbacks in the NFL where he to be used as a permanent backup.

    Teams that would be interested in Anderson as a backup would be many, ranging anywhere from the Colts, who boast Curtis Painter as the only backup to Peyton Manning, to the Chargers, where J.T O'Sullivan and Billy Volek are not the best of backups in the league.

    Anderson could easily be had for a low round draft pick if the Cardinals are not interested in keeping him, and should draw interest all over the league.

Who Could Start Him?

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    There are many quarterback jobs in the NFL right now that could be filled by Derek Anderson's 6'6" frame.

    Looking for teams with talented offenses but lackluster quarterbacks is not easy however, but there are still a few that would benefit from Anderson.

    The Miami Dolphins are one, who boast Devone Bess, Brian Hartline and Brandon Marshall at wide receiver and two great running backs in Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams.

    The 2007 Anderson could easily beat out 2010 Chad Henne, Tyler Thigpen or Patrick Ramsey for that starting role.

    Another team doubting their quarterback is the Cincinnati Bengals, who have Chad Ochocinco, Terrell Owens, Andre Caldwell and Jordan Shipley, along with Cedric Benson, who has shown the ability to be a good back in the NFL.

    There are plenty of teams that would benefit from Anderson, but they must be built to his strengths, as he is not capable at this point in his career of being "the man" in an offensive system as Arizona was hoping.