Fitzgerald is the best player in franchise history. He holds the team records for receiving yards, catches, and touchdowns, and none of these categories are particularly close. If there was something a wide receiver could reasonably do on the field, Fitzgerald did it over the last decade and a half. Hell, he even did things receivers don’t do, like when he threw his first career touchdown pass in December:
All those catches, yards, and TDs are made all the more impressive by how many terrible Cardinals quarterbacks have thrown balls to Fitzgerald. Yes, he has played with Kurt Warner and the final, pass-happy version of Carson Palmer, but there were so many other guys who were decidedly not either of those two.
Fitzgerald’s first quarterback, in 2004, was Josh McCown. Miraculously, both players are still in the league, although one is a Hall of Famer and the other is Josh McCown. Five seasons later, Brian St. Pierre—who somehow threw for only 185 yards in a three-game career that spanned eight seasons—threw his first and only career touchdown pass, caught by Fitzgerald. In 2012, Patriots castoff Brian Hoyer took a break from holding a clipboard behind Tom Brady to head to Arizona. He threw two interceptions in almost two full games, then was released.
Here are some other guys who have had the privilege of throwing to Fitzgerald: Shaun King, John Navarre, Matt Leinart, Tim Rattay, Max Hall, John Skelton, Rich Bartel, Kevin Kolb, Ryan Lindley (oh god), Drew Stanton, Blaine Gabbert, Sam Bradford, and, most recently, Josh Rosen. There was also Derek Anderson, who was so bad that he was replaced by Hall, who was also bad.
In his 15 seasons, Fitzgerald has caught passes from 19 different QBs. There were maybe five of those seasons when the Cardinals didn’t have an abyss behind center. That he carved out a Hall of Fame career, and survived what was one of the worst NFL games ever played, is more than enough proof of his vast talent.
If all goes according to plan, Fitzgerald will catch passes from Rosen and Rosen only this year; the former UCLA product struggled in his rookie campaign but has enough talent to be the third-best QB of Fitzgerald’s career without very little effort. If he should falter, fear not: Forever backup Mike Glennon might be there to save the day. Head coach Kliff Kingsbury could also suit up in case of an emergency.