Sep 29, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer (3) calls a play during the first quarter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
After a 2-2 start the Arizona Cardinals have an opportunity to make a statement, as they have three out of their next four games at home.
After a 500 respectable start (2-2) at the quarter pole the Cardinals have an opportunity to gain some serious momentum. Yes they could easily have been 3 and 1 if they would have held on to the 11 point fourth quarter lead in St. Louis. However, looking at the big picture it really is a respectable start when you consider that their first three out of the first four games were on the road.
Furthermore, what we also need to remember is over half their roster are in their first year as a Cardinal. This is just the fifth game of both new head coach Bruce Arians (and staff) and starting QB Carson Palmer’s tenure.
What sometimes gets lost from week to week and the emotions of every game (in the NFL) is we all knew coming into the season it would more than likely take time to develop chemistry. Because of the pressure to win now in this league it is extremely easy to lose sight that the Cardinals just had a complete makeover during the offseason.
So in hind sight a 2 and 2 start does not seem so bad. Today against the Carolina Panthers the Redbirds have the opportunity to make a statement and get over 500 and gain some momentum for their next two games against their division foes.
With the San Francisco 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks on the horizon, a victory this afternoon will be a huge opportunity to get this train rolling in the right direction.
Although in order to accomplish this feat, Carson Palmer and the offense need to start picking up the slack. The offense needs to start moving the ball consistently down the field. They need to start putting some long drives together and completing these drives with points.
The Cardinal defense has shown consistent improvement each week so far and is starting to come together under new defensive coordinator Todd Bowles. However, if the offense does not get off the snide and start matching the progress the defense has shown very soon, the Cardinals could be in for a tough stretch.
Today’s game against the Panthers to me feels like a real momentum changer. What direction will the wind blow? What I do know for sure is if the offense continues to not produce or hold their end of the bargain, the Arizona Cardinals will be in for a very difficult stretch.
Starting today, it will be crucial for Palmer and the offense to produce some consistent long drives to keep Cam Newton off the field. We have already seen what the better offensive teams (New Orleans Saints) can do if the defense is on the field to long.
It is “now time” for the Arizona Cardinals offense to give us all hope moving forward. It is “go time” starting today. There is no better opportunity than today’s home game to start showing signs of what the offense can do this season. Which way will the pendulum swing? We will find out today in this crucial teeter totter game against the Panthers.