2013 Arizona Cardinals Schedule Breakdown: Weeks 1-4
Nov. 25, 2012; Glendale, AZ, USA: St. Louis Rams cornerback Cortland Finnegan (31) tackles Arizona Cardinals tight end Rob Housler (84) at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
You could say the NFL wanted to play more games in Arizona towards the end of the season for nicer games and a chance to keep the roof open at University of Phoenix Stadium. It might have been a consideration, however, the NFL hasn’t sent the Arizona Cardinals on the road this much this early since their Sun Devil Stadium days. This was the reason they got a new retractable roof stadium, to be able to play early season games at home. The NFL did the Cards no favors in having them on the road three of the first four weeks of the season.
Week 1 – @St. Louis Rams
The Cardinals probably got a break here, starting the season with a division opponent, on the road, in week one and it isn’t the Niners or Seahawks. I’ll take it, although this is a game I like to see in October or November. It does the Carson Palmer a decent test though to start out with. Kevin Kolb came into to St. Louis last year and practically ran for his life. We’ll see what the Cards do with the offensive line in the draft, so stay tuned on that. This will either be another game they have a hard time putting points on the board or one that gives fans a false sense of hope. I’m going to go with the latter and give the Cardinals the victory here. Cardinals 21, St. Louis 20
Week 2 – Detroit Lions
I actually predicted this would be the Cards first home game. It is about the only thing I predicted correctly with the Cards schedule. The NFL has shown the Cards a sense of humor in the past, starting the following season with a home game against the same team that showed up in Arizona at the end of the previous season. This is why I thought this might be the season opener. Close enough. Arizona took care of the Lions last season in their only victory outside of the month of September. I will go with another Cards victory here. Cardinals 34 Lions 27
Week 3 – @New Orleans Saints
Well, the fun ends here. Unless the Cards play close to perfect and we know they won’t, this is no-win no-way game for the Cards. The Saints will be looking to get out of the gates fast after last season’s early season difficulties. I see Drew Brees lighting up the Cards defense for over 400 yards. Unfortunately, Saints take this one. Saints 47 Cardinals 13
Week 4 – @Tampa Bay Buccaneers
These two tangled in the desert a couple of years ago and Tampa had a 38-35 win. Josh Freeman had his way with the Cards defenders. I assume this will be the case once again, although now he has to face Patrick Peterson, so I could see Peterson getting a pick off Freeman. It might only slow him down. Another early season defeat. Bucs 27 Cardinals 19
So after the first quarter of the season, the Cards break even 2-2. Honestly, with the seventh toughest schedule in the NFL, I’d take it.