The Arizona Cardinals will have their hands full with the defending champion New Orleans Saints this Sunday. I think we all can agree that the Cardinals must bounce back from their blowout loss to the Chargers with an impressive win this week. The 2010 schedule won't let up and the Rams and Seahawks could both take the lead in the division. Let's take a look at the three keys to success.
- Move the football on offense - In 2010, the Arizona Cardinals' offense has faced it's share of problems. Giving most fans headaches has been the lack of production and failure to move the ball down field. The offense hasn't mastered any eye-opening drives. That in return has thwarted the Cardinals scoring opportunities. They've only averaged 14.5 points per game and have been outscored 82-17 in both of their losses this season. Max Hall will be the starting quarterback when the offense takes the field on Sunday. His accuracy is better then Derek Anderson's, and I believe he will look better then he did last week. As long as he can drive the Cardinals into scoring range, he'll keep the team in the game. At this point, field goals are better then scoreless drives.
- Protect Max Hall - Without question, the Arizona Cardinals offensive line should have received their most grueling practice this past week. In a pathetic showing in which they allowed nine sacks to the Chargers defense last Sunday, the offensive line was not prepared and ugly. They failed to beat the defense to the punch and missed wide open blitzes at times as well. Hall didn't receive the time he needed to beat the Chargers secondary. It also didn't help that it was the most time he'd ever received in his short NFL career. He'll need all the protection he can get against a dangerous Saints defense that is mastered by defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.
- Pressure Drew Brees - This could potentially become the most important key to Sunday's game. Brees and the Saints offense hasn't looked the same as their magical 2009 team, but remains deadly nonetheless. We discussed the Cardinals porous pass rush earlier this week -- something that cannot continue if their hopes are of another playoff run. Darnell Dockett and Calais Campbell have pressure on their shoulders to perform, but the player on the hot seat is Joey Porter. He was acquired this offseason to help alleviate the loss of Karlos Dansby and assist with the pass rush. Instead he's been blanked so far this season. If the score is close late in the game, pressuring Brees is all the defense has left.
What are your keys to success?