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Bruce Arians: Washington Redskins are 'formidable defense' and 'one of the best running teams we'll face'

The Arizona head coach previews the matchup they have with an old NFC East rival.

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According to fans and many around the NFL, the Washington Redskins are a mess. They are 1-4 on the season and have lost 12 of their last 13 games dating back to last season.

The Arizona Cardinals host Washington this weekend at University of Phoenix Stadium and while many would like to chalk this up as an easy win, head coach Bruce Arians was very complimentary of the upcoming opponent.

"This is a big, very physical, good football team," he told the media on Wednesday. "I think they are a much better football team than their record shows."

Arians is "very impressed with them defensively." He called Washington's unit "formidable."


"This is another pair of outside pass rushers very comparable to last week's, but when you put James Hatcher in the middle, it's a whole different ballgame,' he said to describe Washington's defensive strengths. "He's a very big, slippery pass rusher who really grabs our attention."

The pass rushers on the outside are Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo. Kerrigan has six sacks so far this season. Orakpo has only half a sack, but he has also been banged up. Hatcher has 2.5 on the season.

In comparison, the Cardinals as a team have four sacks. Washington has 14.

Arians called the secondary "young," but did say "they've got two veteran safeties that will absolutely knock your head off," in Ryan Clark and Brandon Merriweather.

The Cardinals could be looking at rookie Logan Thomas as their starting quarterback on Sunday, so that will be a challenge. Young quarterbacks against good pass rushers tend to struggle.

Offensively, Arians praised the Washington running attack.

"(They are) one of the best running teams that we'll face all year," he said. "We put them in the category with the Seahawks and the Niners."

Arizona has one of the league's best rush defenses, but will play Sunday without two of their best run stoppers -- Matt Shaughnessy and Calais Campbell, both of whom are out with injury.

Without Campbell in the game, the Denver Broncos rushed 21 times for 88 yards in the second half.

Washington might look like garbage on paper, but they will give Arizona a challenge.

How worried are you about this game on Sunday?

Editor's Note: FanDuel is hosting a private fantasy football League for SBNation readers this week. It's $10 to join, the top 200 teams win money, and first place wins $1,000. League starts Sunday 1 PM ET and ends on Monday. Here's the link.

State laws prohibit residents of Arizona from playing FanDuel for money. For more info check FanDuel rules here.