Cardinals GM Steve Keim: Team would like to have Blaine Gabbert back

Dec 11, 2017, 8:19 AM | Updated: 5:43 pm
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Blaine Gabbert (7) signals during the second half of an NFL football ...
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Blaine Gabbert (7) signals during the second half of an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans, Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals defeated the Titans 12-7. (AP Photo/Ralph Freso)
(AP Photo/Ralph Freso)
LISTEN: Steve Keim, Cardinals GM

Blaine Gabbert made his fourth start for the Arizona Cardinals Sunday and helped the team to their sixth win of the season — a 12-7 slugfest over the Tennessee Titans at University of Phoenix Stadium.

It wasn’t Gabbert’s best performance. He missed some throws, including one that looked like it should have been an easy touchdown to Larry Fitzgerald.

Gabbert finished the day 17-of-26 for 178 yards, but maybe more importantly, didn’t turn the ball over for the first time in his four-game stint.

Evaluation is certainly continuing, but as the Cardinals organization looks to their future at the quarterback position, Gabbert remains a logical solution.

“I don’t think there’s any question we’d like to have Blaine back,” general manager Steve Keim told Doug & Wolf Monday morning on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station. “He’s done a good job.

“Again, based on what he’s done so far, it’s up to him on how much he can improve and what’s the ceiling for Blaine Gabbert. But everything he’s done since he’s been here, from a work-ethic standpoint, the intangibles, the commitment to film study and his practice habits have all been excellent.”

Gabbert’s accuracy issues Sunday against the Titans can’t be pinned solely on him. He was sacked eight times by the Titans’ defense and was under pressure for much of the game. Still, he was able to lead the Cardinals to four scoring drives in the second half, all of which ended with field goals from Phil Dawson.

“The one thing that has impressed me about Blaine is his ability to bounce back from adversity,” Keim said. “He continues to fight, and there’s no doubt that there are some throws that he would like to have back. Some of the touch throws that he needed to make were a little off-point, in my opinion. To me, he has to do a better job in that area.

“Or when it’s a route that’s not a pre-determined throw and he has to go through his progression, he has a tendency to get a little bit high on his ball placement — or some of the placement on balls outside the numbers seem to sail on him. But he’s been a guy — for what he’s been through — just bouncing back from eight sacks yesterday and continuing to compete was something that I was excited to see.”

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Cardinals GM Steve Keim: Team would like to have Blaine Gabbert back