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Updated Aug 6, 2012 - 4:45 pm

NFL analyst blasts Arizona Cardinals Kevin Kolb

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb (4) is helped by a team trainer after being hit by New Orleans Saints defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis (98) during the first quarter of the NFL Hall of Fame exhibition football game, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 in Canton, Ohio. (AP Photo/Scott Galvin)

To say Kevin Kolb had a rough night Sunday would be an understatement.

Just two of the four passes thrown by Arizona's starting quarterback were caught, with one of them being hauled in by Saints cornerback Malcolm Jenkins. Not long after that Kolb exited the game following a hard tackle that left him with what has been diagnosed as a rib contusion.

The poor performance coupled with yet another injury has many questioning if the 27-year-old can ever be an effective NFL QB, though NFL Network's Michael Lombardi has felt that way for a while.

"When I watched Kevin Kolb play with the Philadelphia Eagles I would always say...I was more impressed with what [Eagles coach] Andy Reid did to make him look good than I was with Kevin Kolb actually looking good," Lombardi told ESPN Radio's Colin Cowherd Monday. "And I think that's the challenge as an evaluator you must go through: is this the player or is this the scheme enhancing the player?

"Clearly in Philadelphia it was that Andy was doing the right things for Kevin Kolb."

Lombardi says plays were designed to confuse the defense in a manner that would allow Kolb to focus on throwing the ball to one area and not have to worry about reading the defense.

That's not how the Cardinals do things, though, and the QB is struggling because of it.

"The first interception that he throws last night is, really, it's a high school coverage," Lombardi said.


That Kolb could not figure out what the Saints were doing is an indictment of where he is in his development, according to Lombardi.

"When you make that mistake, as a player who's been in the league as long as Kevin Kolb," he said, "when are you ever going to say to me you're getting better as a football player?

"I think that's where Kevin Kolb is. I think Kevin Kolb benefited from Andy Reid's teaching just like A.J. Feely did."

There were some who compared Kolb to Feely before the Cardinals made the trade, as they were both Eagles at one time who went somewhere else with expectations of being a legitimate NFL starter.

Feely flamed out when given the chance to start in Miami, and it seems Kolb may be on the same path in Arizona.

"Kevin Kolb's biggest problem is he sees color of the other jersey so quickly he wants to run to his right and escape," Lombardi said.

There may be a variety of different reasons for Kolb's struggles, be it injuries, inexperience or a poor offensive line, but at the end of the day he just hasn't given the impression he can be relied on. There is still time to change that perception, but the clock is ticking.


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