***Author's Note: We're going to need some "Rec'd-s" to keep this article up all week.***
The elevation of the NFC West to the top of the NFL food chain has been years in the making. Led by media-darlings San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks, the two other teams in the division just aren't getting the love. How quickly the NFL world forgets the four game win-streak Arizona had to start the 2012 season. Marked as an aberration, most point at the litany of Cardinals quarterback woes when they recall last season. Funny, but I seem to remember a top notch defense more than Kevin Kolb & Co., but maybe I'm different?
Welcome to the first pregame thread of the 2013 NFL season. I'm an editor and writer for Turf Show Times, the SBNation home for all things St. Louis Rams. I'm a fan of Jess Root and ROTB, dropping in a few times a week to see what's new with the Cardinals. I write mostly features for TST, like my recent article on CTE.
This year, the Rams and Cardinals face off early on the 2013 schedule. Personally, I'd have been happier if this contest happened later in the season. Both teams are in transformation stages, with veteran/second year head coach Jeff Fisher for the Rams, and rookie Bruce Arians taking the helm in Arizona. These two coaches have loads in common if you think about it. What I like most though, is their ability to gather experienced coaching staffs. When Jonathan Cooper went down to injury, I knew Arians would barely blink an eye. His campaign as interim head coach in Indianapolis for Chuck Pagano, featured the Arians led Colts attacking the waiver wire more than any other team in the NFL in 2012. The man knows talent, and showed he's willing to keep looking until he finds the right pieces.
Some questions come to mind about the 2013 Cardinals, the first of which is how can their defense make up for the loss of Daryl Washington. One of my favorite NFL players, I consider him in the top two or three at his position in the NFL. You have a new defensive coordinator? How does his defense look when compared to the Ray Horton version in 2012?
Arizona has one of the best wide receiver corps in the NFL. The possible addition of Patrick Peterson to offensive schemes is going to eat into possible opportunities for Fitz and Co. I'm not sure if this is a good, or bad thing? Thoughts?
Do you have any questions about the 2013 St. Louis Rams? Ask away in the comments, and I'll do my best to answer you.
I'll be stopping in all week to ask and answer questions, and will be inviting the Turf Show Times community to drop in too. Should any of them forget they're guests of ROTB, please don't hesitate to let me know.