Arizona Cardinals leaning towards Skelton?

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FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- The Arizona Cardinals will start Kevin Kolb Friday night against Oakland at University of Phoenix Stadium, but John Skelton could be emerging as the front runner in the team's somewhat plodding search to find a starting quarterback.

Team sources tell ESPN's Adam Shefter that Skelton is now considered the favorite to win the job.

While both quarterbacks having done little to claim the position in the preseason, Kolb's performance has been particularly troublesome. The quarterback is just 2-9 for 25 yards in two games. His quarterback rating is 0.0.

If Kolb begins the season on the bench it will be a significant blow to the Cardinals' personnel department. 

One year ago, the Cardinals identified Kolb as the team's next franchise quarterback when they sent cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second round draft pick to Philadelphia to acquire Kolb. 

The Cardinals instantly signed Kolb to a five-year, $63 million contract with $21 million guaranteed.

Kolb went 2-6 during an injury-plagued 2011 while Skelton conversely went 6-2 in Kolb's absence.

If the ESPN report is accurate, Kolb now has three preseason games to prove he's a better fit for the offense than Skelton, the third year, former fifth round draft pick from Fordham University in New York.

The Cardinals host the Raiders Friday night. Preseason games at Tennessee and against the Broncos remain.

The Cardinals open the regular season on Sunday, Sept. 9 against Seattle in Glendale.