Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 5/18/12
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The Cardinals aren't handing anything to quarterback Kevin Kolb entering training camp.

Coach Ken Whisenhunt plans to determine Arizona's starting quarterback this summer in a competition between Kolb and John Skelton that could stretch into preseason games.

"That's the question that's going to be answered through the workouts this spring and in training camp this summer," Whisenhunt told Jim Rome on Thursday. "It's been good to get out on the field and actually work on techniques and fundamentals with these guys. At times last year they both showed they can do good things. But consistency at that position is something we've got to improve on. So hopefully the competition between both of them will sharpen up one of them enough that he'll be a good starter for us."

Kolb entered the 2011 season as the undisputed starter but the 27-year-old missed seven games due to concussion-like symptoms. He had just over five weeks to pick up the offense, with no benefit of offseason workouts and minimal playbook knowledge, before starting his first game in September.

Acquired last August from the Eagles for a second-round draft pick and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and signed to a $62.1 million deal, Kolb began the 2010 season as the Eagles' starting quarterback but attempted just 10 passes before leaving a Week 1 loss to the Packers.

"I think the knee-jerk reaction would be to say that it is Kevin's job to lose," Whisenhunt said. "But then you have to look at what John Skelton did last year in winning those games when he was in there. So I think you have to give John a lot of credit for winning those games. I certainly have a lot of respect for Kevin and what he's done in this league and we made the commitment to bring him in to our football team. So it's going to start out as even as it possibly can, and we're going to let the best player take it from there. We did that many years ago when we had Kurt Warner and Matt Leinart, and it worked out pretty good for us. So hopefully we'll have that same kind of magic."

Skelton was a fifth-round pick in 2010 but ineffective play from Derek Anderson pushed him into a starting role as a rookie, when his passer rating was just 62.3 and his completion percentage only 47.6. But Whisenhunt praised his maturity in preparation and ability to avoid turnovers (two interceptions in 126 attempts). Skelton, more than three years younger than Kolb, lacks mobility and didn't protect the ball well in seven starts in 2011. He was intercepted 14 times and sacked 23 times in 151 attempts last season.

Arizona picked up Kolb's $7 million contract option in March. However, the Cardinals were one of four known franchises to host Peyton Manning during his March free agency tour. The 49ers were also interested but met with Manning on neutral turf in Carolina.

Whisenhunt clearly wants Kolb to prove he's the man for the job, but as shown in starting Leinart over Warner, he isn't afraid to go with an unpopular move if he believes it will benefit the team in the end.

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