For weeks I’ve been saying be patient. The close losses mounted early but the Arizona Cardinals seemed to just be a few plays away from being not great, but good. Then came the blowout in Minnesota, but again, preaching patience as the Cards still had plenty of season in front of them. Even after last weeks loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, it was, well, the Steelers and there were plays to be made left out on the field. Then, there was today. The Cards jumped out to a 24-3 lead late in the second quarter over the Baltimore Ravens and they were left for all but dead. Then the Cards made a fatal move, coming out for the second half and just absolutely coming out flat with little effort being given. The Ravens won 30-27. Same old Cardinals.
I say same old Cardinals, but really these are new Cardinals making the same old Cardinals mistakes. I don’t know what happened at halftime, but the Cards lost their focus, both from an offensive and defensive standpoint. Larry Fitzgerald caught three passes – THREE, the entire game. You have to get the ball to him more. Beanie Wells was non-existent in the second half when he rarely touched the ball. I have to question the coaching. I have to blame the coaching more than the play on the field, although it appeared the Cards defense just made mistake after mistake and lost composure and mental focus.
The Cards secondary gave up play after play in the second half after playing a first half that resembled a good team. They allowed Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco throw for 336 yards in the game, and although no touchdowns, the defense gave up a lot of big passing plays. When they weren’t giving up passing plays, they were cheating, getting penalized time after time. Flacco looked horrible in the first half.
Then there is Cards quarterback Kevin Kolb. Here is a guy I’ve said time and time don’t make final judgement until next season, however at some point you have to see improvement, right? There was none today. He had a horrible start, took a couple bad sacks. He did play ok at times, but still many times only made one read. Then in the second half? I have no idea what happened. Kolb finished with 152 yards passing. At one point in the first half he was at 126. You do math and you’ll be smart enough to figure out he just isn’t getting it done.
This is a bad team. The players, the coaches, everyone deserves blame. Maybe we deserve most of the blame though for being duped into thinking this was a team that was going to improve over a dismal 5-11 season a year ago. This team may actually finish worse. A very good chance that happens. Let’s just call this what it is, a lost season and let’s start playing some of the younger guys for next season. That does not include removing Kolb. Kolb is the future. They are married to him for now with no chance of a divorce. He makes too much to give up on him but unless there is improvement, the Cards may just have to eat the remaining part of his contract after next season.