Aug 5, 2012; Canton, OH, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back Alfonso Smith (46) runs in the second quarter against the New Orleans Saints during the pro football hall of fame preseason game at Fawcett Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-US PRESSWIRE
A few days back there were a couple posts asking what fans/community were looking to see from the Arizona Cardinals in this first preseason game. I saw answers like no injuries, the offense stepping it up, a QB establishing themselves, etc.
Then the game unfolded today, and it was like a team heard our wishes and made them come true. Hit the jump to read more.
Sadly, the team ready to play, ready to give the Cardinals community wasn't the Cards themselves, but their opponent, the New Orleans Saints. From the opening kickoff, the Saints and Drew Brees marched down the field, putting up an easy seven points. That drive set the tone for the game as the Saints were never really challenged, while on defense, they made the Cards Oline look bad, pressuring Kevin Kolb through his series. In the end, Kolb and Paris Lenon ended up leaving the game for injuries. Kolb had an interception. John Skelton did make the most of his time leading a scoring drive capped off by Alfonzo Smith's four yard touchdown run.
When asked about it, Skelton had this to say, "My hats off to the offensive line for staying with it, and the coaches for calling those runs."
Still speaking about that touchdown, Smith said, "I was relaxed in there, and when the opportunity came to punch the ball in the end zone, I just did it. It definitely worked out exactly how we practiced it."
As for the injured Kevin Kolb, Skelton offered this up, "You never want to have an injury in the preseason, especially in an early game like this, having to play that fifth preseason game. But he will be O.K."
Coach Whisenhunt had these thoughts about his team's performance. "We didn't tackle very well. We made mistakes that were very characteristic of a first game. I thought we got better as the half progressed, settled down a bit.
Coach Whis again, this time on rookie RT Bobby Massie, "He looked like a young tackle who struggled a bit at times. I think the speed of the game is something he's going to have to adjust to. There is no question he has the talent."
And lastly, a bit more from Skelton on coming in and the Cards touchdown. " I thought we started out slow. The Saints gave us some different looks that we hadn't seen from our defense. We have only had eight practices so it is hard to just get thrown into a game, but I think we eventually responded and got that scoring drive.
Kolb when on the field didn't make the plays needed to move guide the offense down the field, and then he got hurt. John Skelton, for as ugly as it can be sometimes manages once again to move the offensive chains. The defense is still too early to have judged, but there were some bright individual plays, including Stewart Bradley, who filled in for the injured Lenon.
In the end, I forsee Kolb ending back up on the injured list sooner rather than later, where he spent most of his time last season.
Tune in next week Friday to see the Cardinals take on the Kansas City Chiefs.