I don’t often beg or plead for a particular player to stay with his team, as I realize the nature of the business that is the NFL. However, I am making an exception in this case. Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner needs to be just that in 2009 – The Arizona Cardinals starting quarterback.
Forget the money. Forget the fame. Forget his age. All those things should be the last consideration. The first consideration should be obviously himself and his family, followed very closely by his team. His family seems to be well entrenched in the valley, so I can’t see that as an obstacle. Even Warner himself said yesterday that his first option, should he decide to continue playing, is to stay with the Cardinals.
If the 2009 Arizona Cardinals are to become only the second team in the past eight years to make the playoffs following a Super Bowl loss, they need Kurt Warner at the helm. This takes nothing away from Matt Leinart. I wish nothing but the best for him and I completely understand if he wants to leave should Warner stay. If he is a smart man though, and he went to USC, so I assume he got some sort of education there, he would continue to back Warner up, even though that wiould probably still leave him out of starting spot until the 2011 season, which would be his 6th in the NFL. Leinart is still young and he would be right around the same age Warner was when he made his breakthrough with the Rams in 1999. This also would continue to allow Warner to be a mentor to him as he continues to develop.
Warner obviously meant so much to this franchise in 2008. He is the catalyst of the Cardinals offense and is a vital part of keeping the momentum going into next season. Now, it won’t be all gloom and doom if he decides to retire. It might be diffciult though to make the playoffs in what is probably going to be an improved NFC West next year. Going 6-0 within the division may be tougher as Seattle and San Francisco improve.
I realize the team will be a little different next season but in order to maintain a continuity, Warner needs to be the leader. He should taks his time to decide what is best for him and his family, however I can tell you, Kurt Warner is what is best for the 2009 Arizona Cardinals.