Through 12 weeks, we have been treated to some great games, standout performances, and some big time surprises. Both good and bad, of course. Some have been individual performances and some have been entire teams as a unit. These are the kind of surprises that make each and every NFL season better than the previous one.
We’ll start with the good surprises.
This team has been atop this year’s biggest surprises in my opinion. People knew this team had a real shot at the division title this year and could probably muster a winning record. However, I don’t think many people, except Skip Bayless, could have seen them repping a 9-2 record and a top 5 offense. To add to that, they are sitting pretty at the No. 2 spot in the conference behind Tom Brady’s squad.
Derek Carr is having an MVP type of season and has efficiently lead his offense up and down the field. One thing that scares me about this team is its weak secondary. The boys up front are playing their hearts out but haven’t gotten much help behind them. The inability to hold their own against the pass is the reason I’m skeptical. Great offense or not, defense wins championships.
In a division with 3 teams above .500, the Raiders have their work cut out for them but should be able to hold strong. I like them to clinch a first round bye. Unfortunately for Raiders fans, I don’t see them nabbing that 1st seed. Go Pats.
Dolphins (Jay Ajayi)
When this team was 1-4 through week 5, I just laughed them off. Now that they have won 6 straight, I am now seeing why no one should be surprised. Both of their first two games were against eventual top-5 teams and they kept them close. Very close. The next three weeks weren’t the prettiest for them but then here came Jay Ajayi.
The Boise State alum racked up 418 yards on the ground and 3 TD’s over a span of two games. That was apparently just the spark they needed as they are now in the 6th spot in the AFC looking up. Despite still having Ryan Tannehill, this team has a shot thanks to one of the biggest individual surprises of this season.
Now for the disappointing surprises.
What in the world happened to this team? It baffles me how one team can go from a 15-1 season, Super Bowl favorite to last place in the NFC south with little to no chance of making the playoffs. Cam Newton is not nearly as threatening as last year and the defense looks like it’s full of rookies (except Kuechly and Davis). After a 1-5 start, they looked like they were starting to turn things around. That changed fast. 6 of their last 7 games have been decided by a field goal. The problem is that they are 2-4 in those games.
Last year’s Panthers squad rarely had to deal with close games. Now that they are heavily involved in them, they are losing. The inability to put together game winning drives or prevent the opponent from doing the same has all but cost them the season. It’s a tough road ahead and frankly, I don’t have and confidence in them to drastically turn things around. The Carolina bandwagon from last year is looking pretty empty right about now.
The 2015 NFC championship game must have been cursed or something. Ever since that lopsided game between the Panthers and Cards, Neither team has played well. With combined records of 28-4 last season, these guys are a combined 8-13-1. Yikes.
I’m not exactly sure what is going on with the Cardinals. Maybe it’s injuries. Maybe this year is just a fluke and they will go 16-0 next year. Who knows. What I do know is that if Arizona wants to even think about making the playoffs, they need to get their act together. My idea is that the ball goes to either David Johnson or Larry Fitzgerald every single play. After all, that is the only place they have been having success.
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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