Re-signing Drew Stanton was an important move for the Cardinals

Mar 8, 2016, 11:05 PM | Updated: Mar 9, 2016, 1:10 pm
At the time Stanton signed a three-year contract with the Cardinals in 2013, he was the best QB on ...
At the time Stanton signed a three-year contract with the Cardinals in 2013, he was the best QB on the roster. The team then traded for Carson Palmer and Stanton moved into the backup role. The team did not need him in 2013 or this past season, but in 2014 he appeared in nine games and threw for 1,711 yards and seven touchdowns with five interceptions. Is he a great QB and possibly the QB of the future? No. Is he a good backup? Absolutely. Unless he thinks he'll have a chance to compete for a starting job elsewhere, expect him to be back in Arizona.

The Arizona Cardinals may have missed out on their top free agent target, defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, but on Tuesday they quietly made a move that should not be overlooked.

Keeping backup quarterback Drew Stanton on a two-year, $6.5 million dollar deal gives Arizona the security blanket they need in case of injury to Carson Palmer. Stanton went 5-3 when Palmer was out in 2014 and he is more than capable of leading Arizona to victories should Palmer go down again.

Stanton plain and simple is one of the best backup quarterbacks in the National Football League.

For every team in the league, the reality is that if their starting quarterback goes down for the season their season is over.

That can be said for Arizona as well. Stanton is good, but likely not capable of leading the Cardinals to the Super Bowl.

What he is capable of doing is winning games and keeping the team afloat. He gives Arizona a chance to win every game they play. He can run the offense. He can command the huddle. He can move the team down the field.

Most teams in this league are in big trouble when their starter goes down.

Take a look at the Dallas Cowboys, who went 1-11 without Tony Romo last season. The Cowboys went 12-4 in 2012 with Romo throwing for 3,705 yards, 34 touchdowns to just nine interceptions and leading the league in pass completions (69.9%). Dallas won their first two games in 2015 before Romo went down with a broken collarbone in the third quarter of that second game. Dallas lost their next seven games and their season was over. They played Brandon Weeden, Matt Cassel and Kellen Moore without Romo.

Stanton had some interest from Detroit and Indianapolis but in the end staying in Arizona where he is wanted and respected was the logical choice. The Cardinals didn’t just want Stanton, they needed him. It is likely had Arizona lost him they would have turned to free agent Chase Daniels. But one of the priorities for the Cardinals this off season was keeping Stanton and on Tuesday they got to check off that box.

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Re-signing Drew Stanton was an important move for the Cardinals