If you've watched the entire All or Nothing series on Amazon featuring the Arizona Cardinals, then you know as well as anyone what the agony of defeat tasted like for this team. The beatdown loss at the hands of the Carolina Panthers in the NFC Championship game was something that affected the entire organization from top to bottom.
Now, it's the job of the leaders on the team to make sure they don't experience that feeling again.
The most talented roster since the inception of the Arizona Cardinals has been assembled. Every player should be healthy entering the season (barring a setback for someone like Tyrann Mathieu). The cards are stacked in their favor. The team simply -- or not so simply -- needs to live up to their own expectations.
So which member of the Cardinals has the most pressure on their shoulders to take this team over the top? Let's take a look at a few names.
This is the name that comes to mind right off the bat. Palmer struggled in Arizona's two playoff appearances last season, throwing a combined six interceptions and giving away two fumbles. In fact, those numbers should probably be even higher. Needless to say, it was not a great postseason for the 36 year old quarterback.
This season, Palmer should get the chance to redeem himself. Unfortunately, that time won't come until the playoffs, should the Cardinals make it once again. We've seen the success he is capable of having in the regular season, but it's the clutch moments in the playoffs that he still needs to prove himself.
Fitz is the longest tenured player of the Arizona Cardinals. He knows what it's like to get to the ultimate game only to fall short at the last moment.
There have been rumblings that Fitzgerald could retire after this season. Whether it's true or not, now is the time for him to bring his illustrious career full circle and put a Super Bowl ring in his trophy room. Whether fans want to admit it or not, he won't be able to play in the league forever. His trip to Canton for the Hall of Fame is already solidified, but he still has the chance to leave an even greater legacy.
Since coming to the desert in 2013, Arians, affectionately known as BA, has endeared himself to the fan base in a way no other coach has ever been able to do. His gruff personality and willingness to speak openly is something fans crave. Of course, the winning he has brought with him hasn't hurt his status either.
But now is the time to turn that winning into something greater. The team has reached a point where a playoff win or two with this roster and staff in place is no longer enough. It's basically Super Bowl or bust, something Arians himself has preached in the past. At the ripe age of 63, now is the time for BA to bring the Valley it's first major sports championship since 2001.
Keim has, overall, been a good general manager for the Cardinals since replacing Rod Graves in 2013. But as evidenced in this article from Seth Cox, Keim has had his fair share of shortcomings as well.
For 2016-17, he has constructed what many would consider the most complete roster in the NFL. The pass rush, one of the team's biggest weaknesses last season, should be much improved this season with the addition of Chandler Jones and another year under Markus Golden's belt. Both players are a product of Steve Keim, who made an aggressive trade and a successful draft pick. Now it's time for all the pieces he has assembled to come together and bring home the ultimate prize.
This list could go on forever. There are other names that absolutely could be added to it. But that's why we have a comment section here on Revenge of the Birds. Who do you think carries the most pressure to win it all going into the upcoming season? Let us know.