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Recent posts by Dan Arkush
Forget the fact that Max Hall has gotten the crap knocked out of him the past two games and has looked pretty crappy before getting his brains scrambled. Provided team doctors decide that Hall is sufficiently recovered from the blow to his head that forced him out of the Cardinals’ Week Seven loss to the Seahawks in Seattle, it appears the undrafted rookie will remain the team’s starting quarterback.
Head coach Ken Whisenhunt intends on sticking with Hall, even though Hall’s replacement last Sunday, Derek Anderson, seemed to provide a spark in directing the team to its first TD of a rushing or passing variety in 11 quarters in Arizona’s sloppy, five-turnover 22-10 loss that snapped a four-game win streak against Seattle.
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While Kurt Warner continues to dance with the stars, Hall is having problems seeing stars after being knocked around like a piñata the past couple of weeks. At some point, one must wonder whether or not such punishment will get inside Hall’s head and make him even more tentative than he has been since taking over the starting role.
If Hall is to continue getting a chance to strut his stuff and hopefully develop into a solid starter for the long term, he must find a way to get off to better starts. His early-game mishaps have set a disturbing tone for an offense that is hurting in a lot of other ways.
In addition to Hall’s struggles, RB Tim Hightower’s problems holding on to the ball could result in him losing his starting job in favor of Beanie Wells, who scored the Cardinals’ aforementioned TD against the Seahawks, which is the only offensive TD in the past three games. It was Wells' first rushing TD of the season.
It also doesn’t help that WR Steve Breaston, who got off to such a strong start, suddenly has been on the shelf for three consecutive games with a knee injury. Whisenhunt said the team decided not to risk Breaston’s long-term health on Qwest Field’s wet turf last Sunday, but the Cardinals desperately need to get Breaston back into the mix. Early Doucet, who was back in the lineup as the team's No. 3 receiver after missing four games with a sports hernia injury, still looks far from completely healthy.
There is some good news courtesy of a defense that has put together two solid efforts the past two games. But unless an offense that has yet to manage 300 yards in a game since Week One gets its act together soon, it wouldn’t matter if the “Steel Curtain” was operating on the other side of the ball.