(Photo by the International Business Times)
The Arizona Cardinals (4-5-1) received good news this week after head coach Bruce Arians was released from his hospitalization for chest pains. Their most recent case of bad news, however, is their road trip to the Georgia Dome where they will play the surging Atlanta Falcons. Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, and a meteoric offense look to take advantage of a Cardinals secondary that is currently awaiting the return of its other phenom, Tyrann Mathieu.
Mathieu has missed the team’s last two games with a shoulder injury, and that could be encouraging for the Falcons. What could also be encouraging is their home-field advantage against a team that seems to have trouble when it is operating opposite its normal body clock.
Since Arians took over as head coach, the Cardinals have been 7-5 in regular season games in Eastern time zones, and the results do not get better considering that their only two postseason losses were against the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte. With the Falcons currently at 6-4, the losses out East could not only pile up but expose a great weakness in a team that is reputed to be a continuous threat.
From 2013 to 2015, including the postseason, the Cardinals have been 1-4 on the road against playoff teams in Eastern Time zones. After winning all their East Coast road games to losing teams under Arians, the Cardinals have now become mortal in that region as their only two Eastern road games in 2016 have resulted in losses to the Buffalo Bills and Carolina, again. The latter two combine for a record of 9-11, and with the Cardinals’ inability to change their body clocks, their 0-3 record out East and an increase in the Falcons’ playoff closeness will be a fait accompli.
The Falcons currently average an NFL high of 32.0 points, and, based on history, they look playoff bound. The last two teams to miss the playoffs despite leading the NFL in scoring were the 2002 Kansas City Chiefs and 2008 New Orleans Saints, and every team that leads the NFL in scoring has made the playoffs since 2009. However, all six of Atlanta’s victories were against teams that allowed an average of 25.0 points and, as a result, it averaged 37.8 in all six.
In their two losses against the Seattle Seahawks and Philadelphia Eagles, it faced two teams that allow a combined average of 18.0 points and were limited to a combined total of just 39. Granted, the missed pass-interference call against Richard Sherman unfairly took a scoring opportunity away, but defenses of their caliber can cause the Falcons trouble.
The Denver Broncos are similar by allowing 18.9 points per game and limited the Falcons to score 23. Had they not let points get scored off a turnover and six sacks and allow running back Tevin Coleman to score a 31-yard touchdown, the Broncos may have limited the Falcons to score a maximum of just 19 points.
With Mathieu, the Cardinals allow 17.5 points per game from opponents, and if he returns, the Falcons could score 21 or fewer points and finish 1-3 against defenses that allow less than 20.0. However, the Cardinals have allowed 28.5 points per game with and without Mathieu on the road, and that could create another advantage as the Falcons’ averaged at least 40 points against teams that allow at least 25.0. Ultimately, the best way Arizona can win is if its exploit the Atlanta defense. With the Falcons allowing sixty plays of 20 yards or more, quarterback Carson Palmer and running back David Johnson will have to exploit that weakness. If they do, the Cards may be back in the playoff hunt while the Falcons could stay afloat but face the risk of losing their division title and missing the playoffs for the second straight season.
Arizona Cardinals 2018 Season Preview
Last year in the desert, the Arizona Cardinals were one of three teams fighting for a playoff spot in the wild, wild NFC West. Thinking that with head coach Bruce Arians and Carson Palmer at quarterback the franchise felt like they could go far in 2017.
They finished the 2017 campaign with a record of 8-8 which was third in the NFC West. When the 2018 offseason finally began, veteran quarterback Carson Palmer decided to hang his cleats up after playing 14 seasons with three different teams.
Now, entering the 2018 NFL season the Arizona Cardinals are without Arians and Palmer. Steve Wilks is the Cardinals next head coach. As an NFL head coach, he has no experience but in college, he has a record of 5-6.
As for quarterbacks, they have four players on the quarterback depth chart and of the four quarterbacks, Sam Bradford and Mike Glennon are the two veteran quarterback. The Arizona Cardinals are looking for Sam Bradford to lead the Cardinals to the playoffs and hopefully the Super Bowl
The Arizona Cardinals begin the 2018 season at home against the Washington Redskins on September 9. As for that game, Here is how I think the Cardinals will do as I predict the 2018 schedule.
|2||At Rams||L||1-1 (0-1)|
|4||Vs. Seahawks||L||1-3 (0-2)|
|5||At 49ers||W||2-3 (1-2)|
|7 (TNF)||Vs. Broncos||L||2-5|
|8||Vs. 49ers||W||3-5 (2-2)|
|16||Vs. Rams||W||9-6 (3-2)|
|17||At Seahawks||L||9-7 (3-3)|
It is unclear if the Cardinals will make the playoffs, we will have to see how the other three teams will do.
Is Kurt Warner Coming Out of Retirement?
Is Kurt Warner coming out of retirement? On the Dan Patrick Show, Kurt called into the show and said that he would consider coming out of retirement and play in the NFL.
Warner talked to his family about returning and even contacted the Arizona Cardinals but at this moment, Arizona has not called back.
Kurt Warner’s football career started when Iowa Barnstormers of the Arena Football League signed him to the team. When he was with the Barnstormers, he won an AFL championship. Then, he became a backup in St. Louis until starting quarterback Trent Green went down. Now as the Rams starting QB, Warner, lead St. Louis to a Super Bowl title.
After spending 6 seasons with the Rams, Warner was the starter in New York with the Giants. However, he got benched in favor of rookie QB Eli Manning. Finally, from 2005-2009 he signed with the Arizona Cardinals where he leads the Cardinals to a Super Bowl birth.
Kurt Warner retired after the 2009 season joining the NFL Network as an analyst. With over 124 games played, 3200 yards, and about 200 touchdowns, Kurt Warner was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2017.
Would you like to see Kurt Warner back in the NFL?
One of Cowboys Wide Receivers is Going West In 2018
According to multiple sources, Cowboys Wide Receiver Brice Butler will not be with the team in 2018. Why may you ask? Because he was dealt with Arizona Cardinals due to Free Agency.
During the offseason, Butler went on shows like “Undisputed” on FS1 and then on NFL Networks’s “Total Access,” to tell teams (including the Dallas Cowboys) that he is a top wide receiver and if Dallas or whoever wants to pay him like one, then he would certainly play with that team. Well, apparently the Arizona Cardinals did.
At the age of 23, Butler went to the Oakland Raiders as an undrafted college free agent. During his years in Oakland, Butler was targeted 50 times and only completed 30 of the passes. Plus he only scored two touchdowns. Brice also played in 25 games and only started in 2 of them. Then in
Then in 2015, during his first season of free agency, Butler moved from the black and silver to the blue and silver as he signed a three-year deal with The Dallas Cowboys. During those three years, he had 43 receptions and 8 touchdowns. Butler also started more games than he did in Oakland, California. Now, in 2018, Butler is looking to continue to improve and look to take the Arizona Cardinals to a Super Bowl.
No word on how much the signing is but according to James Jones of NFL Network, the new contract with the Cardinals is a 2-year deal.
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