Cronkite Header

Cronkite News has moved to a new home at Use this site to search archives from 2011 to May 2015. You can search the new site for current stories.

Cardinals’ Arians OK starting Thomas at quarterback if need be

Email this story
Print this story
TEMPE – Rookie quarterback Logan Thomas had a rough introduction to the NFL in Sunday’s lopsided loss to the Denver Broncos, but Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Monday he’d be content sticking with Thomas if need be.

“I’m comfortable with Logan when he gets all the snaps and all the reps, that we’ll be able to put a plan out there for him to be successful,” Arians said. listen

Entering the game in the second half, after backup quarterback Drew Stanton left with a possible concussion, Thomas completed just one of eight passes and was sacked twice. However, his lone completion was an 81-yard touchdown to running back Andre Ellington.

“Other than that, his feet were jumping around and his eyes were all over the place,” Arians said.

Whether or not Thomas will see the field in Sunday’s home game against the Washington Redskins was still up in the air Monday. Starter Carson Palmer has missed three games with a nerve problem in his throwing shoulder. Stanton must pass the NFL’s concussion protocol.

Arians said Thomas, a fourth-round pick out of Virginia Tech, was in a difficult position Sunday.

“He was put in a situation where, third down especially, we kept losing yards on running plays,” Arians said. “We didn’t help him at all. Our running game was horrible.” listen

But he said the coaching staff can come up with a plan to help out the rookie if he is their only option.

“We’ll formulate a game plan to beat Washington and then see what quarterback is available to be able to do what he does best,” he said.

Arians said he hopes that Palmer or Stanton will be healthy enough to return by Sunday.

“We feel like one of those other two will be back,” he said. “If not, then obviously we have to move on to door No. 2 and get somebody in to back up Logan.”

Whether or not Stanton can return is straightforward.

“As soon as he’s symptom free, then we’ll be able to take the neurological test and proceed through the protocol,” Arians said.

Palmer’s return is a little more uncertain. Arians said he threw 20 short passes on Sunday, but they were nowhere near the strength needed for a football game.

Palmer, who flew out to Denver before the team to meet with a nerve specialist, was still there after the rest of the players left. Palmer is trying the same treatment former Broncos safety John Lynch went through after experiencing nerve issues with his neck.

“I just need to see a full practice,” Arians said. “We’ve got our fingers crossed, and that’s what everybody keeps telling us, when it comes back, it comes back.”

The injuries aren’t limited to the quarterbacks. Defensive lineman Calais Campbell is expected to miss up to three weeks after taking a chop block from Broncos’ tight end Julius Thomas. Cornerback Patrick Peterson is expected to miss up to four games with a sprained right MCL.

Those were on top of a slew of other injuries, including those that have defensive lineman Darnell Dockett and linebacker John Abraham out for the year.

Arians had a similar challenge due to a packed injury roster when he was coaching in Indiana where he said he had 13 guys on the list.

“It’s not that bad yet. I mean, I know everybody’s name,” Arians said.

The most difficult challenge is dealing with the injuries at quarterback.

“That’s the big difference between the injuries,” he said. “When you get to play with your quarterback, you can overcome a lot of the other things. But when it’s your quarterback that stability of your offense changes a little bit so that puts everybody a little bit at different spots.” listen

Arians said one thing that won’t change in his approach to coaching.

“Keep playing hard,” he said. “Coach them up and play hard.”