August 17, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Fans enter before the game between the Arizona Cardinals and Dallas Cowboys at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Best & Worse Case for the Cardinals First Half of Year


Aug 17, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer (3) throws a pass during the first quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Aug 17, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer (3) throws a pass during the first quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Best & Worse Case for the Cardinals First Half of this Year

Let me start by saying that this is completely based off of my opinion. My heart says that the Arizona Cardinals will have a record of 11-5 and making the playoffs. Sadly my head says that the Cardinals may end the season at 7-9, missing the playoffs and potentially being at the bottom of our division. Let’s hope that the latter never comes true. Below I will go through each game and say how I think the Cardinals can win or lose those games.

Reason for Win: Reason for Loss:
Sep 8
@ Rams
The Cardinals offensive line holds up against the fierce St. Louis defense, giving Carson Palmer enough time to eat a sandwich and then make the throw. Additionally our defense creates a few turnovers led by Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu. The Cardinals cannot stop the run, giving Sam Bradford numerous options with play action and having a field day. Also the offensive line implodes and Carson is left playing the “1-2-3-PASS!” style of offensive that Cardinals fans have grown to love.
Sep 15
vs. Lions
The Cardinals defense makes some big stops when it counts and gives the offense enough field position to put points on the board. Double teaming Ndamukong Suh pays dividends as the Cardinals use Running Backs and Tight Ends to help give Carson more room. Mental errors on defensive assignments against Megatron and special teams will leave the Cardinals embarassed and knowing that they beat themselves.
Sep 22
@ Saints
The Cardinals show up to their full potential, stunning Drew Brees and company. A massive defensive effort would need to take place to stop these guys in their own building. A lack of defensive intensity, giving Drew Brees plenty of time to pick and choose how to score. Additionally the loss of Jonathan Cooper shows when the Cardinals offense is unable to run the ball.
Sep 29
@ Buccaneers
The Cardinals Defensive line gets to put on a clinic potentially getting the most total sacks in a game for their season. Also, Andre Roberts and Michael Floyd have big games while Larry Fitzgerald is unfortunately stuck on Revis Island. Other reeivers not named Larry Fitzgerald are unable to come up with big plays and the offense never gets into a groove. Leaving the defense to try to make big plays with little room to work with.
Oct 6
vs. Panthers
Arizona shuts down Cam Newton and is able to chip away with solid kicking by Jay Feely. Rashard Mendenhall jukes his way into numerous first downs helping Carson to open up the offense. The Cardinals defense buckles and Cam Newton plays like the Quarterback everyone thought he could be. Star Lotulelei has his first big game in the regular season, getting to Carson twice.
Oct 13
@ 49ers
The only way the Cardinals beat the 49ers is by finding a way to shut down the option or hope that Kaepernick has a really off night. I would like to say that the Cardinals may be able to win just one against the 49ers, but this definitely wouldn’t be the game. The Cardinals defense is unable to stop the option and the San Francisco offense walks all over them. The offense doesn’t look any better as our players get lit up like a Christmas tree.
Oct 17
vs. Seahawks
The Red Sea erupts to bring an atmosphere unlike any other as the defense baits Russel Wilson into throwing right at Patrick Peterson. The Cardinals win this one by the skin of their teeth by a late drive from Carson Palmer. Russel Wilson shakes off the injury bug with a big performance followed by Marshawn Lynch running right through the middle of the Cardinals defense.
Oct 27
vs. Falcons
Arizona is able to stop “Matty Ice” with a pick 6 from the Honey Badger. Solid special teams work from Dave Zastudil pins the Falcons offense in their own territory all night. The Arizona offense commits to many turnovers early, making it hard to come back from the halftime defecit. Matt Ryan throws for big gains to keep the chains moving.

Summary

I think both halves of the season are going to be equally as hard. There are some games that the Cardinals can win as well as others that would be tough to come out of alive. For the Red Sea to succeed this year they have to stop the run and they have to protect the Quarterback. If either of those things don’t happen, it’s going to be a long year.

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Tags: 2013 NFL Schedule Arizona Cardinals