Simple question for everyone today. The Cardinals have a very versatile three headed monster in their backfield, but instead of trying to become a team that runs the ball 40 times a game they are having Derek Anderson and Max Hall who have shown some accuracy issues try to sling the ball around the field to Larry Fitzgerald, Steve Breaston, and Early Doucet. Now, you would think that with weapons like that at the wide receiver position, any Quarterback could be successful as song as their accuracy was just okay. But we haven't seen that thus far. Max Hall has shown that he can make accurate passes, and he is probably more accurate than Derek Anderson, but he is struggling like you would assume any rookie would. And Derek Anderson looks nothing like the guy who made the Pro Bowl as an alternate after Tom Brady dropped out in 2007 when he had a good season in Cleveland with less talent around him than he has here.
So, it just makes you wonder why the hell don't we run the ball more? Take some pressure off of our struggling Quarterbacks. But they are still coming out and slinging it, even when you are at the Tampa Bay 20 yard line with 2 minutes left in a 3 point game where there is still plenty of time to call a run play and milk the clock to keep Tampa from getting the ball back. And you know what happens when you throw the ball there, Derek Anderson couldn't see a wide open Early Doucet, and he decided to force the ball to Larry Fitzgerald when he had three people around him, picked off, game over.
So, lets take a look at the backfield and talk about why they should all get the ball more.
Beanie Wells: Although his yards per carry average is down this year (part of that is from almost always running into an 8 man box with how the defense is selling out to stop the run and make us throw now), he is still a dangerous back. Beanie has a great combination of size and speed, and he is almost always able to fall forward and gain positive yards on plays where most running backs would get stuffed for no gain or a loss. He is also a guy that you can just pound into the defense and wear them out so that you can break off some big runs in the second half. I think that he should get around 15/20 carries a game.
Tim Hightower: Hightower has been fumble prone this year, but he has also been ripping off a lot of big runs. He is also probably the most versatile back on the roster since he is a guy who is good at running, catching, and blocking. While Beanie is also supposed to be the home run threat, Hightower has two runs over 70 yards in the last two seasons, and he is actually averaging 5.6 yards per carry right now so he is proving that he can be dangerous when he carries the ball. He should still get some carries, but he really needs to get the fumble issues under control. I'd give him at least 10 carries a game and 5 catches.
LaRod Stephens-Howling: This guy is becoming a fan favorite right now. Probably one of the best kickoff returners and special teams players in the NFL, and he is starting to emerge as a legitimate weapon on offense. He is a lot smaller than Beanie and Hightower, but he is very fast and shifty. LSH is playing very well as a change of pack back who is like Darren Sproles from San Diego, and he should continue to get some snaps with the offense, but I wouldn't give him any more than 10 carries a game because you don't want him to get hurt. He is only 5'7" and you don't know how much of a beating he would be able to withstand from the defense.
All of these guys should get the ball, and Whiz has shown that he will ride the hot hand during a game. So, do you think that each of these guys should carry the ball more often, and that the Cardinals should try to get away from passing 40 times a game until the Quarterbacks learn to stop throwing the ball at the guys wearing the other teams jersey.