Blaine Gabbert gets a shot with Arizona while Colin Kaepernick remains unsigned

Shutdown Corner
<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/players/24797/" data-ylk="slk:Blaine Gabbert">Blaine Gabbert</a> (2) was signed before 2016 49ers teammate <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/players/24823/" data-ylk="slk:Colin Kaepernick">Colin Kaepernick</a> (background, kneeling). (AP)
Blaine Gabbert (2) was signed before 2016 49ers teammate Colin Kaepernick (background, kneeling). (AP)

It’s almost like the Arizona Cardinals wanted to give more fodder to the folks who wonder why Colin Kaepernick hasn’t been signed this offseason. 

The Cardinals on Wednesday agreed to a contract with quarterback Blaine Gabbert, according to USA Today’s Tom Pelissero. It’s a one-year deal. The contract is valued at $855,000, according to the Arizona Republic’s Kent Somers.

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By any statistical measure Kaepernick is a better quarterback than Gabbert, who was the 10th overall pick of the 2011 draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars. Gabbert has an awful 71.5 career passer rating (Kaepernick: 88.9) but it’s hard for teams to give up on the talent Gabbert flashed coming out of college. He has never turned that into NFL production, but this will be by far his best team. Neither the Jaguars or 49ers were good situations for any quarterback.

Gabbert was benched by the 49ers last year … for Kaepernick, who played much better on the same team. The Cardinals have a potent passing game under head coach Bruce Arians’ leadership.

The Cardinals will have to address life after Carson Palmer, who is 37. There’s no solid long-term plan for Palmer’s retirement, unless you’re high on Drew Stanton. Gabbert probably isn’t the answer either, considering his lack of NFL success through six seasons, but the Cardinals can take a look at him through training camp and the preseason. Perhaps they can unlock Gabbert’s potential.

Gabbert has had painfully little NFL success, but there aren’t enough quality quarterbacks to go around and teams will keep giving chances to those who have shown even a little bit of ability to play. Well, those extra chances are given to most quarterbacks, anyway.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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