Quarterback derby heating up in Arizona

It would be a mistake to read too much into the first preseason game of the season.

But it’s hard not to wonder if John Skelton is closing the gap or even overtaking Kevin Kolb for the starting quarterback job with the Arizona Cardinals.

First, Kolb needs to get back on the field. The starter was knocked out Sunday night in the Hall of Fame Game after throwing only four passes with what Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic reports was a bruised rib muscle and diaphragm. Coach Ken Whisenhunt downplayed the injury and said Kolb could be back in action before the week is over.

But Kolb was intercepted on his first pass in the 17-10 loss to the New Orleans Saints in Canton, Ohio, and replacement John Skelton led a 90-yard scoring drive on his only full possession. He finished 4 of 6 for 32 yards.

Kolb completed just one pass and he’s coming off last season when he missed seven games with a concussion and a foot injury.

Stay tuned.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune