Oct 6, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals players Alfonso Smith (29) and Andre Ellington (38) celebrate with running back Rashard Mendenhall (28) after Mendenhall scores a touchdown during the third quarter against the Carolina Panthers at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Cardinals Need To Keep Rhythm Coming Off The Bye Week


The Arizona Cardinals established some momentum going into the bye week, the question will clearly be can they sustain it coming back at home against the Houston Texans. Momentum can be over rated at times as it does not usually carry over from game to game, but what is important to sustain is the rhythm of the offense they have gained from the previous game.

The rhythm was established by the running game with Andre Ellington and Stephan Taylor getting all of the 30 carries combined, and it seemed to be effective enough to keeping the opposing team off balance on defense.

I think that Ellington’s carries are right where they need to be at around 15-20 and the rest to Taylor to average 30 running plays per game, but will the rhythm be disrupted trying to insert Rashard Mendenhall back into the starting line up? This could be a move that could break the stride the team has put together.

Coach Bruce Arians may still be committed to Mendenhall as his starter and that would take Taylor’s carries down to a minimum, but the performance from both rookies merits another opportunity to see if this is truly the recipe for winning, Mendenhall will have to get off to a very electric like start to warrant keeping the starting job in my opinion.

This is the opinion of most fans around the valley, why try to break what is working? It is said that a man should not lose his job to an injury, but we have seen this happen time and time again, if the next man is getting the job done coaches usually take advantage of that and keep it unchanged.

I have not heard much from the coach this week other than he may go back to Mendenhall depending on health, but it can cause an up roar in the rhythm and continuity of the team heading into the important second half of the season, that will not be a good sign, going into the second half still trying to figure out what your doing on offense, that is the recipe of how the first few games turned out, its time to stay with what is working and move on.

The explosive run game is the key to rhythm in the passing game, having a threat in the back field that could take one to the house on one touch is critical, we have not seen that style from Mendenhall all season long and I don’t anticipate him getting any faster or elusive in the next week or so, not to mention if he will be fully healthy, and if he is, then he needs to show case it early and often on the field, otherwise if it aint broke don’t try and fix it, stay with the rookies fire.

Tags: Cardinals Bye Week