Arizona Cardinals quarterback Matt Leinart has been informed that he will be released today, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.
The 10th overall pick of the 2006 NFL Draft out of USC, Leinart has started 17 games over the last four seasons, completing 57.1% of his 595 pass attempts for 3,893 yards, with 14 touchdowns and 20 interceptions, compiling a 70.8 passer rating. Most of Leinart’s game action occurred during the 2006 and 2007 seasons before giving way to Kurt Warner.
After two seasons as Warner’s back-up, Leinart was expected to ascend to the starting role this season. The Cardinals pursued competition for Leinart, and signed former Cleveland Browns quarterback Derek Anderson to a two-year, $7.25 million contract in March.
Anderson was named the starter for the team’s third pre-season game, a decision that Leinart did not respond positively to, expressing a desire to move to a team where he could be the starting quarterback. The Cardinals reportedly shopped Leinart around the league, and gave Leinart permission to do the same, but no team was willing to take on his contract, which was to pay him $2.45 million this season, and $12.86 million in total compensation in 2011.
With Leinart off the roster, undrafted rookie quarterback Max Hall will be the team’s #2 quarterback.