I just want to start off by wishing everyone here a Merry Christmas. I know the Cardinals season hasn't went exactly how we expected but it's certainly nice to watch them play today. I'd also like to let everyone that I have found employment starting at the beginning of January that will have me sitting at a computer -- giving me a good opportunity to work on the site. Unfortunately it comes as the season closes. With that being said, let's move on to three keys to a Christmas day miracle.
Pass the ball to Larry Fitzgerald -- I've finally concluded that the Cardinals offensive game-plan needs to be to put the ball in Larry Fitzgerad's hands all the time. It doesn't matter which way they do it. 'Fitz' generally picks up positive yardage off the wide receiver screen, but I'm also ready for an all-out hail mary. We all know what he is capable of once the ball is in the air. Very few cornerbacks can out-muscle the All-Pro in a jump ball situation. The Cowboys defense is ranked 28th in the league, allowing 271.9 receiving yards per game. That should be an enormous red flag to Ken Whisenhunt and the rest of the offense to put the ball in number eleven's hands.
Control the ball and convert third downs -- Obviously with this team that's easier said than done. Last week the Cardinals only converted 4 out of 15 third downs and were out-possessed by 13:52 to the one-win Panthers. Here's what I think -- they need to successfully rush the football. The Cardinals have had little luck converting third downs all season and it's largely due to Derek Anderson and a poor rushing game. Anderson is out of the picture now and Skelton was able to complete 7 first downs on his own last week. That means Ken Whisenhunt and Russ Grimm need to draw up some plays that bounce the football to the outside. Jeremy Bridges and Levi Brown are both big and can get a good push for Beanie Wells and Tim Hightower. Both running backs explode well once they reach the edges. Although the Cardinals fullback Reagan Maui'a isn't a Pro Bowler, I'd like to also see him shuffled in the mix. If the Cardinals can stick to their guns against a Cowboys rush-defense ranked 14th, I believe it will improve the time of possession and third down conversions.
Keep an extra eye on Jason Witten -- In his last four games, Jason Witten has caught 32 passes for 350 yards and 4 touchdowns. In the three games prior to that, he caught just 8 passes for 99 yards with no touchdowns. He has heated up down the stretch of the season and veteran quarterback Jon Kitna has learned why he and Tony Romo are best friends. We all know that Adrian Wilson has a weakness covering All-Pro tight ends, which is why they must double team the 6-6, 263-pound tight end. If they can't control Witten, we could be in for a long game.
Once again from Revenge of the Birds, I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and happy holidays. What are your three keys to a Christmas day miracle today?