With BASG covering 49ers training camp, let’s continue our tour around the NFC West. Yesterday we explored how our neighbors to the north have been frantically adding headcase wide receivers who used to play in San Francisco. Today we’re heading down to the southwest, where a couple more ex-49ers have already seen preseason action.
Kevin Kolb: bruised bird
Remember when people wanted the 49ers to trade for Kevin Kolb? The former Eagles quarterback started the Hall of Fame Game against the Saints, and his outing couldn’t have been much worse. His first pass was an interception, his next two were incomplete and his fourth would be his last. As his final throw was completed to fullback Anthony Sherman for a 4-yard gain, Saints nose tackle Sedrick Ellis crushed Kolb, ending his night with what’s been labeled as bruised ribs. The Cardinals ended up losing the preseason opener, 17-10.
This is the latest in a career full of injuries for Kolb. In 2009, while playing for the Eagles, he suffered a preseason knee injury. In 2010, Kolb suffered a concussion in Week 1; an injury that eventually led to Michael Vick taking over at the quarterback position. After being traded to the Cardinals, Kolb’s 2011 season was abbreviated by a toe injury in Week 8 vs. the Ravens and a concussion against the 49ers in Week 14. Now Kolb is back in the training room, his hopes of starting for the Cardinals possibly waning.
Note: The Arizona Republic’s Kent Somers reported Tuesday morning that Kolb was throwing passes during the team’s walk through.
It’s tough to make conclusions based on the Hall of Fame Game, but Kevin Kolb’s health is worth monitoring. John Skelton is by no means elite, but he played well against the 49ers in 2011. In the Cardinals’ 21-19 upset over San Francisco, Skelton was 19-for-28 for 282 yards and 3 touchdowns. He hit Early Doucet for a 60-yard score and showed great chemistry with Larry Fitzgerald, who went nuts with 7 catches for 149 yards and a touchdown. The 49ers could be rooting for Kolb to heal quickly.
Tyler Nickel of Revenge of the Birds on the competition between the two quarterbacks:
“By all appearances, Skelton played rather well. He led the team to their sole touchdown of the game and seemed to hit his receivers in stride. He went 4-6, passing for 32 yards. Kolb, on the other hand, looked absolutely miserable on the field. Before leaving with his injury, he went 1-4 for 4 yards and threw a rather ugly interception to Malcolm Jenkins.
Still, the battle is far from over. This is just the first preseason game and if Kolb is healthy, he is going to put up a fight. Skelton was scheduled to start the next game with the first unit anyhow, so Kolb could potentially come in with the second team and shine. Skelton has shown issues with accuracy and decision making as well, so he will need to continue to show consistency to maintain the lead.”
RBs: a better Beanie and a former Niner
Cardinals’ running back Beanie Wells, who underwent offseason knee surgery, was removed from the “physically unable to perform” list and participated in the Cardinals’ walk through on Tuesday. The team projects him to see snaps in their second preseason game against the Oakland Raiders.
Back up running back Ryan Williams sat out the Cardinals’ first preseason game as well, nursing a knee injury that forced him to sit out of the entire 2011 season. The Cards’ battery of healthy running backs – Alfonzo Smith, LaRod Stephens-Howling, William Powell and, yes, Thomas Clayton – combined to rack up 28 carries for a total of 112 yards and a touchdown against the Saints.
Adam Snyder – Cardinals version
Former 49ers guard Adam Snyder got his first chance to play with his new team on Sunday, and it was a memorable performance – Snyder was tasked with blocking Ellis on the play that led to Kevin Kolb’s rib injury. It wasn’t all Snyder’s fault, as Ellis got away from Snyder after Kolb left the pocket and rolled out to the right. However, it should be interesting to see how Snyder does against his former teammates in their two meetings this season.