August 02, 2009
A year ago, the 2006 first-round pick and Heisman Trophy winner was the No. 1 quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals going into training camp before he was beaten out for the job by veteran Kurt Warner(notes).
With Warner fresh off having led the Cardinals to their first Super Bowl, Leinart (at right) is not even competing for the No. 1 job anymore. But he is still competing. Arizona brought back veteran backup Brian St. Pierre(notes) and promised him a chance to compete with Leinart for the No. 2 job.
That's stunning considering that the 29-year-old St. Pierre has thrown all of one pass in six years. St. Pierre was a fifth-round draft pick by Pittsburgh in 2003. While some people believe the promise to St. Pierre by coach Ken Whisenhunt was an empty ploy, two sources indicated that the threat is very real for Leinart and that he needs to improve his game and show better mental toughness.
Both sources also rolled their eyes when asked about Leinart's offseason MMA training, which was advertised as a way to improve Leinart's toughness.
As for Leinart, he took the news in stride.
"Everybody has to compete for a job out there," Leinart said. "I'm not worried about it. I'm going to keep doing my thing."
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
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