For the Arizona Cardinals, the preseason hasn’t exactly done much to prepare them for the rigors of the regular season in the NFL.
Yet, they sit at 3-0 after their 27-3 thrashing of the Dallas Cowboys.
The Cardinals let Sam Bradford get the start, but David Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald and Josh Rosen would all be held out of the game for the Cardinals.
Offensively, there was nothing to write home about. The Cardinals starting offense that was out there couldn’t block, couldn’t catch and couldn’t run. The good was seeing Sam Bradford take a lick from Randy Gregory, after he beat D.J. Humphries for a sack, and get up and dust it off. The Cardinals had kept Bradford clean so far in the preseason and sometimes, it is good to see a player get hit.
Their bad offense didn’t matter though.
In the first quarter, Andy Lee boomed a punt to the Cowboys that was muffed, mostly because of the punt but also the ferocious speed of Rudy Ford, and recovered by Trent Sherfield in the endzone.
Then, on the ensuing Cowboys possession, in his new role on the defense, Patrick Peterson took a Cooper Rush pass, picked it and returned it for a touchdown putting the Cardinals up 14-0.
Then, it was the Mike Glennon show and the drops continued for the Cardinals skill players.
The biggest concern of the first half had to be the lack of consistent push and protection from the first team offensive line and the lack of anything from the receiving corps.
Defensively, the Cardinals forced five first half turnovers, including two punt fumble recoveries, the Peterson interception, a Peterson forced fumble and a Budda Baker interception on the lone redzone opportunity of the half for the Cowboys.
Chase Edmonds finished the first half with 11 carries for 55 yards and one catch for eight yards and had 65 yards of the 108 for the Cardinals in the first half.
Of course, with second and third teamers in to start the second half, T.J. Logan would reset that, breaking off a 59-yard touchdown run to put the Cardinals up 24-0.
File this in the slightly interesting to see category, but the Cardinals second string linebackers in this game were Gerald Hodges and… Haason Reddick. The Cardinals played exclusively in nickel for the entire game, meaning the starters on defense we’re Deone Bucannon and Josh Bynes, both who were finally back from injury.
It likely was just to get Bucannon and Bynes as many reps as possible, but we’ll see in game one.
There was little after the Logan touchdown to write home about, but one player once again found a way to make a splash play, as Cap Capi had a strip sack recovery in the fourth quarter.
Late in the game, Matthew McCrane kicked another 50+ yard field goal, this one from 54-yards, to extend the lead to 27-0.
The Cardinals defense gave up the shutout late, surrendering a field goal late.
There was not much to take from this game, outside of the defense played really, really well against a lot of backups.
However, the offense did nothing without their top skill players in, despite having their starting offensive line in the entire first half.
Also, is there a kicking competition controversy or was the broadcast right that this is Phil Dawson's job?
Hopefully nothing serious for either D.J. Foster or Arthur Moats, but we will announce anything as soon as we get it.