2013 Preview: Arizona Cardinals Special Teams


Sept. 30, 2012; Glendale, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals punter Dave Zastudil (9) and kicker Jay Feely (3) look on during the second half against the Miami Dolphins at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Cardinals beat the Dolphins 24-21. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

As we head into this week’s NFL Scouting Combine, teams are preparing for April’s 2013 NFL Draft.  The Arizona Cardinals have needs in several areas and some others they are doing alright in.  However, we are going to take a look at a position by position look at the Cardinals and see what lies ahead for 2013 and what the needs are, if any.  The special teams is highlighted here.

The Arizona Cardinals special teams wasn’t as spectacular in 2012 as it was in 2011, however they still got the job done most of the time.  There weren’t any awesome punt returns for touchdowns for Patrick Peterson.  There was a 61-yard field goal by Jay Feely.  However that came in the same game he missed a chip shot that would have defeated the Buffalo Bills.  Sometimes you take the good with the bad.  Feely, and punter Dave Zastudill, for their part, were extremely serviceable last season.

The Cardinals kick coverage team was up and down.  The punt and kick block team looked like it would continue its mastery in 2012.  They did have a good moment in New England early in the season when it is believe they got into the head of Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski and caused him to miss a gimme chip shot and give the Cards a stunning 20-18 win.

Star/Perennial Pro-Bowler:  Calais Campbell (kick block team), Patrick Peterson (punt returner)

Solid performer/rising star: Justin Bethel (punt/kick block team)

Solid/Serviceable: Jay Feely, Dave Zastudil, Mike Leach

On the bubble: None