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Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians backs decision to stick with Lindley over Thomas

LISTEN: Bruce Arians- Cardinals head coach

The Arizona Cardinals’ anemic performance on offense in Saturday’s 27-16 NFC wild-card playoff loss at the Carolina Panthers had many fans and experts wondering: Why didn’t coach Bruce Arians replace struggling quarterback Ryan Lindley with rookie Logan Thomas?

With a couple days to reflect on the loss, Arians stood by the decision to leave the 6-foot-6, 250-pound Thomas on the sideline in favor of Lindley, who the Cards cut in the preseason.

“Athletically, he’s one of the top 10 quarterbacks in the league as far as arm strength and accuracy and all those things. It’s the knowledge of the game and playing the position that he’s still learning,” Arians told Bickley and Marotta on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Monday. “He came out of three different offenses in college, so he’s learning (a new) offense.”

Thomas, the Cardinals’ 2014 fourth-round draft pick out of Virginia Tech, threw just nine passes in the regular season, completing one of them: a short pass to tailback Andre Ellington that turned into an 81-yard touchdown in an Oct. 5 loss at the Denver Broncos.