The Cardinals may not be heading to the playoffs this season.
But General Manager Steve Keim sees the work rookie quarterback Josh Rosen is getting as valuable, and helps get them closer to that goal in the future.
“I think he’s ahead,” Keim said during an appearance on 98.7 Arizona Sports, via the team’s official website. “The one positive in all this is he is getting those game snaps right now, instead of having them delayed in his career. So he is going through the growth period right now. There are a number of things Josh can still work on, seeing the field and some of those different concepts, areas where he can improve. But to have the kind of poise and pocket presence he has, and some of the throws he has made, is outstanding.
“There are times, we all know, when he looks like a rookie out there. There are times you look at him and say, ‘He’s got a chance to be a heck of a player.’ ”
Rosen is five starts into his NFL career, won two of them, and has a 69.9 passer rating. Offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich is just one game into his career as a play-caller. And Keim’s choosing to be glass-half-full there too, even if he wasn’t ready to officially declare them a tandem beyond this season.
“We are in a constantly evolving stage right now,” Keim said. “We are looking at every facet of this organization whether it is personnel or coaching. Those decisions have not been made yet. But at the same time, I am rooting like heck for Byron. He’s a great guy, he’s passionate, he’s got a great feel for the game. He and Josh have developed a very good relationship. Being a young coach, just some of the things he has done so far have certainly excited us. We’ll see what the next eight weeks brings.”
Of course, things might be different had Keim not set fire to $16 million for three games of Sam Bradford. He didn’t know Rosen would available at the time, but their plan at the position was nonetheless built on a shaky foundation.