With game one coming up this Sunday against the St. Louis Rams, Arizona Cardinals fans should get to know a few things about who they are facing this weekend. The Rams are coming off a 4-1-1 NFC West record in 2012, including a two-game sweep of the Cards. Here are five things you need to know about the Rams this week.
1) Janoris Jenkins. The second-year cornerback from North Alabama picked off two passes against the Cards last season. Hopefully Cards fans remember this when watching Cards quarterback Carson Palmer make his reads on Sunday. Palmer has been known to throw a pick from time to time, so this will be an interesting matchup to watch.
2) Chris Givens and Tavon Austin. It was bad enough that Givens torched the Cards corners a couple of times last season. Now add rookie receiver Austin who is going to provide a lot of excitement for Rams fans. It could be a long day for the Cards defense.
3) Rushing defense. If there is a concern for the Rams on defense, it is against the run. The Rams, who were 18th overall in the NFL in 2012 in total rushing defense, they did give up 117.5 yards on the ground per game. They also allowed 18 rushing touchdowns, which was tied for third in the NFL. The Cards may have new weapons in the passing game but they may want to look to the five-headed rushing monster that is the Cards rushing offense to help propel them to victory.
4) The game is indoors. Well, you might be saying yes we know this. Well, maybe the forecaster at AccuWeather doesn’t. They actually provided a weather report for the game, saying it would be 92 with a chance for thunderstorms in the area. Um, it’s indoors. We don’t need a weather forecast. This is something the Cards are used to at home for the first three months of the season.
5) The Rams have lost six straight season openers, with the last opening win coming against the Denver Broncos in 2006. Included in those six losses was one to the Cards in 2010, a 17-13 loss at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis.