NFL Offseason: Quarterback Situation Taking Shape In NFC West

There is no real action in the offseason to discuss besides what happens with the lockout and the court hearings that are set to take place on Friday, but there is speculation  and lots of discussion. Of all the divisions in the NFL, the NFC West was by far the worst and this offseason has three of the four teams with quarterback questions. As things have been rumored and reported, it appears that only the Arizona Cardinals are left to see who will be their starter. 

The St. Louis Rams are set with Sam Bradford. It looks more and more like new head coach Jim Harbaugh will bring back Alex Smith to start for the 49ers while grooming Colin Kaepernick for the future. 

The Seattle Seahawks have Charlie Whitehurst, for whom they traded last offseason. Matt Hasselbeck is not under contract and for a bit was rumored to be heading out of town. In fact, at one point, SI's Peter King had the Arizona Cardinals as the most likely landing spot for Hasselbeck and that he was done in Seattle. Now it seems that things have been smoothed over and that he will be leading the Seahawks in 2011. 

The Cardinals are the ones left in limbo. Technically, Derek Anderson is still on the team, but almost everyone believes (and most Cardinals fans hope) he will be cut at some point. John Skelton is still on the team. Max Hall is still alive. However, I think that everyone in the organization will view this offseason as an utter disaster and a failure if any of those three guys starts for the team in 2011. 

The candidate rumors have come and gone. First is was Marc Bulger. Reportedly, there was "an understanding" in place. Now it is believed that he wants to stay closer to St. Louis for family reasons and is not necessarily interested in starting. 

Hasselbeck is out. Carson Palmer is not going to be traded from Cincinnati, according to owner Mike Brown. This leaves Kevin Kolb and Kyle Orton as the only real candidates that remain. Both are under contract with their respective teams and both are supposedly on the market. 

Almost every rumor, report or speculation has Kolb being the guy who is number one on the Cardinals' list, but that Orton is a worthy backup plan. The trade price varies from as low as a third round draft pick for Orton to as high as a first round pick and a starting caliber player for Kolb. 

With the offseason not technically started and a lot of doubt as to when that will happen, this is the best we can do for now. If the lockout magically ends soon, then real action can happen. It will be madness when it does, but fans won't care. 

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