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Arizona Cardinals starters did alright, but the depth is sorely lacking on the defense

The first team defense was game, but the falloff was quick and vast when their night was over.

NFL: Preseason-Kansas City Chiefs at Arizona Cardinals Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

It has been an interesting preseason for the Arizona Cardinals.

They looked competent for about one quarter against the best team in the NFL, with maybe the best player we have ever seen in Patrick Mahomes.

A week after showing some gumption against the Denver Broncos, they had a good start to things against the Kansas City Chiefs... and then things got bad, and quick.

We know how much this offense desperately needs Kyler Murray to function at a higher level than we have seen in the preseason, but we also were not sure what to make of this defense.

Well, I think it is safe to say that the defense is... okay.

If the starters can stay on the field and stay healthy, they can compete. No, they are not the 2000 Ravens, but they can be a top 20 defense after being 31st last year.

A mild improvement that is only going to happen if they stay healthy and see a little improvement in some of the young players, especially edge rushers.

This week was disappointing up front, two pressures from Zaven Collins, two from L.J. Collier, but nothing from Dennis Gardeck and an iffy one from Jonathan Ledbetter.

The problem is pressures are not sacks and even this week led to no hits.

This was a day that shows the lack of a true lead edge is going to be hard to overcome.

Now, can they create pressures with blitzes and take some pressure off a secondary that was really exposed this week?

We know the talent is limited, but this week it was shown how much of a dropoff from the first team to the second.

If the first teamers can’t get things done it is going to be a long season because the depth is severely lacking.