November 18, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back LaRod Stephens-Howling (36) runs after a catch in the first half against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE
John Skelton wasn’t getting the job done. He started off 2-7 and his five incompletions were bad. Really bad. He missed a wide-open Larry Fitzgerald in the end zone. That apparently was enough for Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt to pull him in favor of rookie Ryan Lindley. Of course Lindley came in and promptly fumbled the ball and was returned for an Atlanta Falcons touchdown. The game has turned.
I really don’t understand the move at the time. The Cards were up 13-3. Skelton wasn’t playing well, but you can’t insert a rookie like that in a hostile environment like that. I don’t get it. I question the move in yet one more questionable call for coach Whiz. I’ve stated all season that Lindley should only play if he is the only option left and the season for all intent and purpose was over for the Cardinals.
Lindley came out on his second drive after a great kickoff return by William Powell. His 65-yard return went for naught. Lindley could not move the ball. Lindley and the rest of the Cards were rattled. This does not bode well for the second half.