There isn’t too much pressure on Max Hall leading up to his first career start.
Undrafted free agent to make an NFL roster: check.
Third starting quarterback for this year’s Cardinals team: check.
First start against defending Super Bowl champion Saints at home: check.
Now that Ken Whisenhunt has gone through Matt Leinart and Derek Anderson as his starters, he has settled on former BYU quarterback Hall as his guy.
“I think Max certainly feels he's ready for it,” Whisenhunt said. “I mean, he's a confident young man. He's been that way since he's been here. He's made progress. He believes in himself and carries himself with that confidence. I know that he wanted to play. I don't think that's ever been a question.”
Despite their offensive struggles, the Cardinals are actually tied for the NFC West lead at 2-2. But they’ve been outscored by a whopping 82-17 in those two losses.
“Hopefully we'll make some more plays, be a little more efficient offensively," Whisenhunt said. "I think that one of the areas we need to improve in is just making the plays that are there. That's what we've missed on."
Any pressure, kid?
“I'm just going forward like [the job] is mine," he said. "That's the mindset that you have to have. They're putting everything into me. The game plan and everything is going toward my strengths so I'm moving forward like it's mine."
The 6-foot-1 Hall is a hometown favorite, having grown up in nearby Mesa. He initially enrolled at Arizona State but never played for the Sun Devils. After two years on a Mormon mission, he started all 39 games in his three seasons with BYU, completing 65 percent of his passes for 11,365 yards and 82 touchdowns while with the Cougars. He broke Ty Detmer’s school record for victories with 32.
"We do feel good about his ability to get in there and run our offense and that's because of the way he's handled himself since the day he got here," Whisenhunt said. "That's a little bit unusual for rookies, to have that confidence, to have that ability to handle the huddle, make some plays. Once again, it doesn't really mean anything until you see it on game day and we're certainly expecting to have some success with that."
Hall was not among the 15 quarterbacks chosen in the draft.
"You don't get drafted, you wonder what's going to happen," he said. "I was excited to be part of this organization. Coach Whisenhunt was always good and fair with me in everything that we did. We have a good relationship. It's an exciting thing for me to have the opportunity that's ahead of me to start for this team. I'm just going to give it my best."