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Anderson The Newest Cards' QB

Former Pro Bowler agrees to two-year contract


Quarterback Derek Anderson agreed to a two-year contract with the Cardinals.
The Cardinals have another quarterback.

Derek Anderson agreed to a two-year deal Wednesday, as the Cardinals abandoned their pursuit of Chargers' restricted free agent Charlie Whitehurst and instead went after Anderson, a 2007 Pro Bowler who was released by Cleveland earlier this month.

"A fresh start was something I wanted," Anderson said on a conference call. "Getting out of Cleveland and competing and kind of proving I can play. The 2007 season was a great year but the last couple of years haven't been, obviously, good for me or the team I was playing on."

The contract was reportedly worth $7.25 million, including $3.25 million in guarantees.
Anderson's 2007 season got him a spot as an all-star, when he went 10-5 as a starter for the Browns and threw for 3,787 yards, 29 touchdowns and 19 interceptions.

But Anderson struggled after that. In 2008, he had just nine touchdowns passes and eight interceptions as the Browns tried out Brady Quinn at the position. Eventually, Anderson's season ended with a knee injury. In 2009, he had just three touchdowns and 10 interceptions in eight appearances (seven starts), and once Mike Holmgren was hired as Browns' president, he cut Anderson and traded Quinn.

Anderson comes into a situation where he will be the backup to Matt Leinart. Coach Ken Whisenhunt said there will be continuing competition however.

"I think of it having another guy that has played that you know, if something happened to Matt, he can come in and play well," Whisenhunt said. "That's important because certainly in this league it is hard to get through 16 games without an injury at that position."

The Cardinals considered Whitehurst but eventually decided it was better to chase Anderson, who was unrestricted. Later Wednesday, the Seahawks worked out a trade for Whitehurst – who has yet to throw a regular-season pass in four seasons – that cost Seattle a 2011 third-round pick, a swap of second-rounders in 2010 (moving the Seahawks down 20 spots) and a two-year, $10 million contract for Whitehurst.
The Cardinals will still add at least one more quarterback to the roster. Bringing back free agent Brian St. Pierre is a possibility, as is drafting someone next month.
As for the rest of free agency, Whisenhunt said talks continue with players and their agents, although he wasn't specific. While he didn't mention linebacker Joey Porter by name, he addressed the idea of getting an outside linebacker in free agency still possible, but "I don't think that is something we have to have."

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