Another offseason, and another Kevin Kolb bonus sitting squarely in the middle of the Cardinals' plans.
Last year it was a $7 million roster bonus due to Kolb that essentially forced the Cardinals to excuse themselves from Peyton Manning's table. This year, it's a $2 million roster bonus that Kolb is owed if he's on the roster on March 17th.
While the options aren't nearly as enticing and the money just doesn't pack the same punch, the effect is the same: it's a deadline to decide. With that deadline now less than two weeks away, it's interesting to note that there hasn't been a ton of chatter in the media about any conversations between Kolb and the Cardinals. At least, none that I've heard or read on Twitter from those who are better connected than I on this one.
Does it simply mean they have yet to start talking? Or that they have started and nobody has heard about it? Both possible.
In the leverage game, I believe the Cardinals have the edge. Surely Kolb can point to the dearth of QBs around the league and dare the Cardinals to do better than him. The Cards can point to the other starting jobs available and dare him to do the same. Ultimately, I think the team's stance is stronger.
It's also possible, as Darren Urban suggested a couple of weeks back, that they'll cut Kolb and once he finds out that there isn't anything better out there, he'll be back.
I can't help but to wonder if the silence (perceived or real) is a sign the Cardinals aren't terribly interested in bringing Kolb back. At first glance that seems illogical. After all, they've invested a lot in Kolb. They would look foolish for giving him $20+ Million for a handful of games over two years.
But that should not be Bruce Arians' concern. He is trying to find a QB who can play his style of offense. Perhaps after watching the tape (again, speculating here) Arians has decided that person is not Kevin Kolb. After all, Arians has said in the past he wants big chunks of yards downfield; not really Kolb's game. If Arians has determined that Kolb isn't his type of QB, then perhaps the Cardinals aren't motivated to bring him back.
In which case, you could have a complete do-over at the QB position.