Kolb on IR, Lindley to start at QB for Cardinals

Kolb on IR, Lindley to start at QB for Cardinals

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) The Arizona Cardinals have given up hope that Kevin Kolb will return this season, placing the only quarterback who had success with the team this season on injured reserve and naming rookie Ryan Lindley as starter for Sunday's game against Detroit.

Kolb led the team to a 4-0 start to the season, but went down with a rib injury in Week 6 and has not played since. The team placed him on injured reserve Wednesday, two days after claiming quarterback Brian Hoyer on waivers from Pittsburgh.

``I just think in talking with the doctors and where he is physically, just being able to take a hit was the biggest concern,'' coach Ken Whisenhunt said, ``and what kind of effect that would have on him.''

Lindley will be back running an offense that ranks last in the NFL on a team that has lost nine straight and is coming off the most one-sided loss in franchise history, 58-0 at Seattle.

Not exactly a quarterback's dream job.

``We're going to go with Ryan this week,'' Whisenhunt said after Wednesday's practice. ``That's where we ended the game last week. He's gotten experience and you'd like to think that we can progress from those experiences, and hopefully he'll play well in this game.''

Lindley said he wants to show he's better than his disappointing performance two weeks ago in a 7-6 loss to the New York Jets, when he completed 10 of 31 passes for 72 yards. The Cardinals had five first downs in that game, tying a franchise worst, and were 0 for 15 on third-down conversions.

``I just kind of knew after that game there was a lot of improvement I needed to do,'' the sixth-round draft pick from San Diego State said. ``I needed to show I can play better than that. Getting another opportunity, that's exactly what it is, an opportunity to go out and play.''

Lindley had started two games but was benched in favor of John Skelton for last week's game in Seattle. Skelton got the hook after throwing four interceptions and losing a fumble against the Seahawks.

There's no doubt that Whisenhunt would much prefer to turn to Kolb, but the freak rib injury ruined that idea.

Kolb said he looks forward to coming back next year , although the Cardinals may balk at paying him the $11 million - $9 million in salary and a $2 million roster bonus - that he is due.

``If that time comes, we'll have the discussion,'' he said, ``but hopefully it won't and hopefully they see what they have and we can move forward and get to a good offseason.''

Kolb was injured in a broken play when he fell hard on his chest on a tackle. Pieces of cartilage were torn from the top of his rib cage and became lodged behind the sternum, slowing the healing process.

``Really what happened is I kind of hit a wall with my rehab,'' Kolb said.

It's just another setback in Kolb's rocky two seasons in the desert.

The Cardinals thought Kolb would be their franchise quarterback when they acquired him just before the start of the 2011 season from Philadelphia in exchange for cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second-round draft pick. But Arizona started 1-6 and Kolb struggled with Whisenhunt's offense as well as with injuries, first a turf toe, then a concussion that prematurely ended his season.

Kolb lost the starting job to Skelton this preseason. But when Skelton was hurt late in the opener against Seattle, Kolb came on to direct the game-winning touchdown drive.

He completed just under 60 percent of his passes, throwing for eight touchdowns with three interceptions. By contrast, Skelton and Lindley have combined for two touchdowns and 14 interceptions.

Despite a fierce pass rush that resulted in him being sacked 17 times in consecutive games against Miami and St. Louis, Kolb said he felt that he was jelling with the offense.

``We really had a good thing going and we got decimated by injuries,'' Kolb said. ``We really did.''

Whisenhunt, if he returns next season, said he would be comfortable building off what Kolb has shown.

``You like to be able to build off of something and that at least is a positive,'' Whisenhunt said.

Kolb said he'd like to know his status with the organization early in the offseason.

``I would like for it to be settled for my sake and my family's sake,'' he said. ``It's been a hot topic for about three offseasons in a row. Hopefully, we'll have some conversations and, like I said, I made a commitment to this team. I want to be around for a long time. I'd like to do very big things here and I have confidence in what we have here.''

He said he knows there will be changes in the offseason, but he doesn't want to be among them.

``Obviously, we're going to have to make adjustments. We all know that. It's not good for anybody to be in this position,'' Kolb said. ``But my focus is being part of this team for a long time, and being the best player that I can be and getting this place back to an elite level. I'm going to work my tail off to make sure we get there.''


Online:http://pro32.ap.org/poll andhttp://twitter.com/AP-NFL


Follow Bob Baum at www.twitter.com/Thebaumerphx

Quick Links

5 must-see moments from Wizards' important win over Pacers, including Kelly Oubre's big dunk

5 must-see moments from Wizards' important win over Pacers, including Kelly Oubre's big dunk

Here are five plays or moments from the Wizards' 109-102 win over the Pacers on Saturday night that are worth revisiting... 

1. The Wizards took care of business against the Pacers on Saturday night and in doing so earned an important advantage in the playoff race. They won the season series and therefore own a tiebreaker for playoff seeding and currently that would mean home court advantage in the first round if the playoffs began today.

The Wizards took control early and part of that effort were five first-half assists by Bradley Beal. He ended up with 19 points, but some of his best plays were passes.

On this one, he executed a perfect pick-and-roll with Marcin Gortat:


2. This was another pretty pass to Gortat. Tomas Satoransky, who had 12 points and eight assists, fed Gortat with a nice reach-around pass on a play that featured some impressive ball movement overall:

3. This was a great moment. The Wizards had a member of the military surprise his niece on the court. She literally did not see it coming:


4. These last two plays are dunks by Kelly Oubre, Jr., who finished with 16 points. On this play, he cut through the and threw down with authority:

5. This dunk was set up by a beautiful pass from Ramon Sessions. It traveled about three-quarters of the court and Oubre did the rest:

The Wizards now have three days off before their next game as they sit fourth in the Eastern Conference. Things are trending positive for the Wizards as the playoff race heats up.

NBC Sports Washington is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Quick Links

Wizards take out Pacers to earn important advantage in playoff seeding

Wizards take out Pacers to earn important advantage in playoff seeding

The Washington Wizards beat the Indiana Pacers 109-102 on Saturday night. Here's analysis of what went down...

Important victory: Saturday night's game between the Wizards and Pacers had several layers of playoff implications on the line and it was Washington who rose to the occasion and showed the urgency commensurate for the stakes.

By beating the Pacers, the Wizards locked up the season series between the teams, two games to one. That gives them the tiebreaker for playoff seeding if the teams finish the regular season with the same record. That could very well prove paramount. As of now, the Wizards and Pacers have the same record (40-30) with 12 games to go.

The season series advantage means the Wizards are above the Pacers in the standings despite having the same record. They moved into fourth place in the East with the win and the Cavs slotted back into third. There will likely be a lot more movement as these next few weeks play out, but the Wizards now hold an important edge over the Pacers.

The win also pushed the Wizards to 14-8 since John Wall went down with a left knee injury. Wall could return this coming week or the week after and the Wizards have more than stayed afloat during his absence.

The Wizards' magic number to make the playoffs is now just five. 


Sato went off: The Wizards jumped out to a double-digit lead in the first quarter mostly thanks to a hot start from Tomas Satoransky, who scored the Wizards' first five points and had 10 by the end of the first quarter.

Satoransky's floater was automatic. He dropped in several in the lane from all different angles. Satoransky was practicing the same shots, floaters off each foot, the day before in practice and it paid off.

It was a well-rounded night for Satoransky. In addition to his 12 points, he also had eight assists and five rebounds, including this one to find Marcin Gortat for the dunk:

Gortat came up big: Speaking of Gortat, the Wizards' big man had one of his best games of the season. He poured in 18 points to go along with eight rebounds, four assists a steal and a block. Gortat shot 6-for-8, consistently having his way on the block.

The Pacers were without two of their best big men in Myles Turner and Domantas Sabonis and Gortat took advantage of that. He was way too much for Al Jefferson.

The Pacers tried to roll with small-ball lineups using Trevor Booker and Thaddeus Young as their big men, but it didn't work. Gortat was too big for them and his teammates did a great job finding him for open looks.

Gortat's 18 points were his most since Jan. 3 when he had a season-high 21 against the Knicks. Lately, Gortat has seen his minutes dwindle with the increased role for Ian Mahinmi, so Saturday night must have felt good for the Polish Machine.


Bojan held in check: Bojan Bogdanovic, who spent part of last season with the Wizards, was a major factor in the first two matchups between Washington and the Pacers this season. He had 20 points in one game and 29 in another, each time getting hot from three.

The Wizards, though, made some adjustments in this one and held Bo Buckets in check. He didn't make his first shot until nearly the midway point of the second quarter and it was only because Kelly Oubre, Jr. (16 points, 18 minutes) lost his balance. Oubre stumbled backward, giving Bogdanovic a split second to get off an open three. That was the only shot he hit in the first half as he began the game 1-for-4.

Oubre did a good job harrassing Bogdanovic and not giving him space on the premiter. Otto Porter (eight points) and Bradley Beal (19 points) did as well. Both Porter and Beal stripped the ball out of Bogdanovic's hands early in the third quarter. Midway through the third, Bogdanovic got past Porter only to be called for an offensive foul on a collision with Gortat. All in all, it was a frustrating night for Bogdanovic, who had 11 points, three below his season average.

Bogdanovic is a very good shooter and when he's hot can alter games. But when you take his shots away, there's not much else he can do to hurt you. The Wizards did a good job taking away his strengths and making others beat them. Not having to focus on Turner and Sabonis certainly helped. 

Sessions is still in the rotation: It turns out those five games for Ramon Sessions over the course of his second 10-day contract weren't just an audition. Now that he has been signed for the rest of the season, Sessions is still getting the nod over Tim Frazier as the backup point guard.

Sessions logged 18 minutes and even played alongside Satoransky and Jodie Meeks in the fourth quarter. The Wizards had a sizable lead and head coach Scott Brooks decided to experiment with his lineups. That is something to keep in mind for when Wall comes back. Once he does, Sessions will be the third point guard and likely rarely see the court. But if they see something they like about him at shooting guard, that could open the door for more playing time possibilities.

Up next: The Wizards have three off-days before their next game. That will be on Wednesday when they head to San Antonio to face the Spurs. Tipoff is at 9:30 p.m. on NBC Sports Washington. Pregame coverage begins at 8:30 p.m. with Wizards HangTime.

NBC Sports Washington is on Apple News. Favorite us!