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Week 1 defensive snap counts for Arizona Cardinals

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How did the defensive rotations look?

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

With the offensive snap counts known, now we can look at the defensive side of the ball. There were a lot of plays on defense, as the New Orleans Saints ran 70 offensive plays. There were 74 actual snaps, though. Let's see who got the bulk of the playing time.

Only two players never left the field -- Patrick Peterson and Deone Bucannon. Bucannon played exclusively at linebacker on Sunday and it appears he will play there all the time, even in base defenses, giving the Cardinals no less than five defensive backs at any time.

Defensive backs: Patrick Peterson, 74; Deone Bucannon, 74; Jerraud Powers, 73; Tyrann Mathieu, 73; Rashad Johnson, 62; Tony Jefferson, 58; Chris Clemons, 5

The Cards played a ton with four safeties on the field. They had five when they went with seven defensive backs. There was one play where the went with four safeties and only one corner. Of course, Bucannon is a DB, but he played all linebacker on Sunday

LInebackers: Alex Okafor, 67; Kevin Minter, 62; LaMarr Woodley, 38; Markus Golden, 17; Sean Weatherspoon, 12; Kareem Martin, 9

Perhaps the takeaway was how much Minter played. He was a base player only last year. The only package in which he always came out was the team's "penny" defense -- when they went with seven DBs. I believe there were five of those sets, which means Weatherspoon played only another seven snaps.

Defensive linemen: Calais Campbell, 51; Frostee Rucker, 49; Rodney Gunter, 28; Cory Redding, 28; Ed Stinson, 19; Josh Mauro, 15

You can tell the Cardinals wanted to share the playing time. Campbell only played 69 percent of the snaps, keeping him fresh. Rucker's workload was a little higher than 2014, when it seemed the team tried to limit him to about 40 snaps. While you think of the Saints as a team who spreads the ball around, the 28 snaps for Gunter says the Saints went with double tight end formations quite a bit. Mauro became the hybrid linebacker/defensive end in dime packages when the Saints went with at least three receivers, but there was more of a threat of running the ball.