Sometime around 1 p.m. this afternoon, Phoenix time, two quarterbacks will meet at the Arizona Cardinals' training facility.
"Max Hall is Kurt Warner 12 years ago,'' Warner told me Thursday night from Phoenix. "Nobody expected me to make it when I showed up in an NFL camp. When you're undrafted, the way we both were, the expectations are very low, of course. I will probably share something with him -- I was in the same boat as you 12, 13 years ago. Enjoy it! Just go out and play. When I first made [the Rams in 1998], I remember being scared I might get cut, and
It is. Hall was the most accurate of the four passers in training camp, and there was a maturity (partially from having served a Mormon mission) and a feeling that he belonged that the coaches saw from the first day. And it got reinforced in camp. I wrote this
And now Hall debuts against the Super Bowl champs, with a quarterback his own size (
But the only way the 6-foot-1 Hall will have a chance, especially against the unpredictable blitzes that Saints defensive coordinator
"I'm sure I'll be a little nervous,'' he said from his car last night. "But I'm just concerned about taking one play at a time and make that the best play we can make it. That's the only way I know how to succeed. I'm not the biggest guy, or the strongest guy, but I'm smart and I'm accurate.''
I always wonder how new guys like Hall, who walked into the locker room last May as the 73rd (or some such longshot number) guy on the roster, a camp quarterback, are accepted by the vets. These guys probably don't even know his story.
A local high-school star (and nephew of former Cowboys quarterback
"Just give me a chance,'' Hall said to him when he signed. "That's all I ask.''
A chance -- you mean like starting the fifth game of the season?
Hall will duck into a huddle on Sunday with a guard who's been on Super Bowl winners (
"He's one of the guys you've got to kick out of the building every night,'' Fitzgerald said. "I like how he takes command of the huddle. He's not afraid.''
But Hall knows he's got to prove himself to his team now. The feel-good story is over.
This afternoon, Hall will do his first production meeting with a national TV crew. Starting quarterbacks always meet with the network crew in town to do the game. This week, it's play-by-play man
"A little ironic,'' said Whisenhunt. "For Kurt, maybe it'll be like looking himself in the mirror.''
This isn't the first time a team has approached a game against
Ball's the leader of a totally anonymous group of Titan pass-rushers under defensive line coach