TEMPE, Ariz. -- Embattled Arizona quarterback Kevin Kolb took one hit too many, and it's uncertain whether he will be able to return to lead the Cardinals against the Vikings at Minnesota next Sunday, or will turn the job over to John Skelton.
Kolb injured his ribs while being sacked for the fifth time in Sunday's wild 19-16 overtime loss to Buffalo. Coach Ken Whisenhunt said X-rays were negative for anything broken.
"We are getting an MRI done on him today just to make sure there's not something that we're missing," Whisenhunt said Monday. "He was pretty sore this morning, which you would expect, but he was moving around."
Kolb was moving around a whole lot on Sunday, but his unscripted scampers provided some of the Cardinals' best offense of the day. Kolb gained 66 yards in 5 carries.
"He got sacked eight times (actually nine) last week," Arizona left guard Daryn Colledge said, "so I think he learned he had to run."
Of course, when a quarterback takes off running, bad things can happen, too.
With the Cardinals down 16-13 and time wasting away, a holding penalty on tackle D'Anthony Batiste made it 1st and 20 from the Arizona 19. Again, Kolb was under duress, but he broke free for a 22-yard run that gave the Cardinals (4-2) a first down at the Arizona 41.
The next play, Kolb checked off at the line of scrimmage and called a draw play. Running back William Powell didn't realize it and Kolb was left alone with the football. He didn't quite make it to the line of scrimmage for what was ruled Buffalo's fifth sack. He was slammed to the turf with the football painfully pinned between his ribs and the ground.
Finally, Kolb got to his feet and came to the sidelines.
Skelton, active for the first time since spraining his left ankle in the season opener, came on and threw three straight incompletions. But on fourth and 10, Skelton found Larry Fitzgerald over the middle to the Buffalo 43. Three more incomplete passes followed, but after
Jay Feely's franchise-record 61-yard field goal forced overtime, the Cardinals lost at home
Skelton, who beat out Kolb for the starting job in the preseason, was understandably rusty in relief, completing 2 of 10 for 45 yards. The two completions, though, could have been enough to win this one.
"The fourth-down throw to Larry was a big-time throw, and the throw to Larry on the slant that put us down to the 20 was another good throw," Whisenhunt said. "But the interception was not. That's one of those where you can't make that throw. John did well enough in there to give us a chance to win in regulation, and had we made that kick we would have felt very good about everything."
Whisenhunt said it's far too early to talk about whether Kolb could play at Minnesota, the first of a challenging series of games over the next month. Arizona is home for a Monday night game against San Francisco on Oct. 29, followed by a trip to Green Bay, a bye, and a visit to Atlanta, currently the league's only unbeaten team.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.