Another Sunday has come and gone, marking off another contest in the 2013 season for the Arizona Cardinals. Last Sunday found the Cardinals taking on division siblings in the St. Louis Rams. Coming into the game, the Cardinals were struggling to win divisional games.
So, what did we learn about the Cardinals after their 30-10 victory?
That the defense is very legit. Every layer of the defense has play-makers, and they elevate the play of those around them. Karlos Dansby, brought in on a one year flyer is have arguably his best season ever. John Abraham is earning every penny of his contract and making people wonder why the Atalanta Falcons moved on. Calais Campbell and the rest of the line are stuffing the run. If the Cardinals make the playoffs it will be due to the play of the D.
Carson Palmer is consistently inconsistent. Last week he threw a pair of picks and lost a fumble. This week he had 32 attempts with a TD and no interceptions. He was able to spread the ball around to his receiving corps, including finding Larry Fitzgerald for 12 receptions.
Speaking of Larry Fitzgerald and his 12 receptions, in watching the game I can't help but think that he's not utilized correctly. With 12 receptions he had 1 TD and 96 yards on the day, with a long of 19. I know Palmer's elbow was bothering him for the game but as I think this through it feels to me that Fitz isn't the correct fit for Arians' offensive scheme.
Running the ball has always been an issue for Arizona, but this year as an offense they've stayed true to the run game. Andre Ellington returned and as a unit the RB managed 99 yard for the day. I'm certain that next year the Cardinals will look at ways to improve this average.
Lastly, our knowledge that football is a dangerous sport was re-affirmed when rookie sensation Tyrann Mathieu tore his ACL and LCL while returning a kick. Wishing you a speedy recovery HB, there's plenty of big plays in your future.