Cards QB Kolb still feeling concussion symptoms

December 28 [Wed], 2011, 19:06
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP)―Kevin Kolb still has lingering concussion symptoms but the Arizona quarterback is resisting the idea that his injury-plagued first season with the Cardinals is over with one game to go.

Kolb says he didn’t do much when his teammates practiced on Wednesday after a test he had a day earlier confirmed the symptoms.

“I had a full psych exam,” he said. “It showed that I’m a little slow with reaction stuff and some processing stuff from my baseline that I had earlier in the year. It basically just validates what we have been saying as far as the symptoms.”
The quarterback has not played since he took a knee to the head on Arizona’s third offensive play against the San Francisco 49ers on Dec. 11. Kolb missed four games earlier in the season with a right turf-toe injury.

He would not rule out returning for the season finale, rather than just calling it quits and regrouping for work in the offseason.

“That’s not the way this league works,” he said. “That’s not the way a competitor works. I’ve gone through all the film, still trying to get my mind in it. You never know when you can help out. That’s very important for us to go 8-8. That’s a big thing in our locker room. We felt that we had a great thing going this last half of the season and we want to continue that for next year.”

But wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald hinted that Kolb might be better off waiting until next season to return to the brutal game action.

“I think he’ll be OK,” Fitzgerald said. “It’s just at this point we’re not playing for a playoff position. Why take the risk of doing any further damage? Get a whole offseason in and get him back ready and pick it up for next year.”

Kolb was the starter for Philadelphia in the season opener a year ago. A concussion knocked him out of that game and Michael Vick replaced him. This concussion is different, Kolb said.

“The lingering symptoms are the biggest kicker,” he said. “That is something I didn’t deal with last time. I felt like once I got to that Friday or Saturday of the next week I felt pretty good. Obviously this one seems to linger a little bit further. Not ideal, but you roll with the punches.”

Kolb said he has “talked to a number of veteran quarterbacks that went through” concussions.

“One thing I’ve collected is that every one of them is different with every single player. My first one was a lot different than this one was,” he said. “You can’t anticipate it, and I think this is a thing where you have to be smart, especially in our situation. No one wants to be out there worse than I do. I’m not happy about it, but it’s something I have to deal with.”

John Skelton is 4-2 as a starter in Kolb’s absence, 5-2 counting the 49ers game. The Cardinals wrap up their season at home Sunday against Seattle.

Coach KIen Whisenhunt said he understands Kolb’s reluctance to say he’s done for the year.

“I think that, in order to play at this level, you have to have a competitive fire that burns in you to some degree,” Whisenhunt said. “Maybe there are some guys that are just talented enough that it doesn’t matter. For the most part, I think that everybody wants to play and that’s important.”

Whisenhunt said the injuries that have plagued Kolb are simply the nature of the game.

“I think that we all know that, especially at that position, the chances of guys getting through a whole season without an injury doesn’t happen that much,” Whisenhunt said. “It doesn’t really matter how I feel about it. That’s the way it is.”

The coach said he doesn’t believe concussions will be a long-term problem for Kolb.

“I don’t think you can say that,” Whisenhunt said. “I don’t think there are any kinds of studies or anything that says that’s the case. I personally haven’t thought along those lines. I don’t know that we have and I don’t think there is any information that would be the case.”
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