Cardinals playoff failure falls on front office, not just Ryan Lindley

The Arizona Cardinals were historic on Saturday night during their Wild Card Round loss to the Carolina Panthers.

Starting third string Ryan Lindley at quarterback the Cardinals amassed just 77 yards of offense, the worst mark in the history of the NFL playoffs.

Lindley was as bad as anyone could have guessed on Saturday looking clueless under center while committing self defeating turnovers. He finished the game 16-of-28 for 81 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions.

The Cardinals signed Lindley off the practice squad of San Diego when starter Carson Palmer went down. When backup Drew Stanton went down in Week 15 Lindley jumped from third string to the top of the depth chart. Almost immediately he showed he did not belong on an NFL field.

Despite the failures of Lindley to close out that Dec. 11 game against the Rams, the Cardinals started him a week later and were blown out by Seattle. Rookie Logan Thomas was then announced as the Cardinals starter but that lasted just one practice at which time it was deemed he had no idea what was going on.

Really? That bad? Rather than look around for anything else that could give them a punchers chance the Cardinals simply turned back to Lindley. The front office never had another plan, perhaps there was no other plan.

As bad as Thomas may have been in that lone practice session, would it have been the end of the franchise if he started a game? Surely he could not have been any worse that Lindley.

Thomas spent all year on the Cardinals active roster. The front office though that highly of him yet when the time came they sought an option outside the organization to start.

Lindley finished the regular season completing just 48.4 percent of his passes while tossing two touchdowns and four interceptions in just over two games worth of action. Yet the Cardinals somehow believed he gave them the best chance to win. Based on what?

This should all but end the career of Lindley. We get it, the practice squad list of quarterbacks is less than desirable. But Ryan Lindley?

Not even Lindley could have been surprised that he failed on Saturday.