Why didn't Cardinals go to Logan Thomas?


You can come up with any number of ways to describe the struggles of the Arizona Cardinals' offense on Saturday in Carolina. They gained 78 yards in 16 drives. No team in playoff history gained less.

It was the worst performance by an offense in any NFL game since a Brodie Croyle-led squad in 2010 for the Kansas City Chiefs. And it all begs the question: Why didn't the Cardinals make a change at quarterback?

Fourth-string quarterback Ryan Lindley clearly wasn't capable of competing, yet coach Bruce Arians refused to give rookie Logan Thomas a shot.

"I thought (Lindley) did great until the first interception," coach Arians said. "He managed the game as well as he could and we didn't do a good job of putting ourselves in manageable third downs but he wasn't throwing interceptions and then we got the big break and he forced one in there."

That's a charitable view of a quarterback that averaged 2.9 yards-per-attempt and barely even looked downfield. Arians, so aggressive all year in his playcalling, played things very conservatively. It's fair to question why he didn't give his rookie quarterback a chance.

Thomas' father, who was at the game, couldn't hide his displeasure on Twitter.

Even Panthers coach Ron Rivera admitted after the game that Carolina caught the Cardinals "at a good time."

It's a shame that Arizona's incredible season ended this way. The difference between a quality backup like Drew Stanton and a No. 4 quarterback like Lindley was far greater than the stepdown from Carson Palmer to Stanton. Not many teams can compete after losing two quarterbacks, even a team as tough-minded as these Cardinals.

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