Oct 27, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back Andre Ellington (38) runs for an 80 yard touchdown against the Atlanta Falcons in the first half at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports
The Arizona Cardinals will be on the road in week 13 to face the Atlanta Falcons for the second consecutive year, and this game will be a toss up as to who will be the winner. The Cards are coming off a loss to the Seahawks the week before in which the hawks were in revenge mode, and that can very well be the case in this game played in the Georgia Dome.
Falcons will look to avenge a 27-13 loss last year in a game that featured the breakout of rookie running-back Andre Ellington, who put on a show in electric fashion carrying the ball 15 times for a season high 154 yards and 1 touchdown, which came on an 80 yard burst down the sideline in the first half.
Falcons will have their star receiver Julio Jones returning next year from a leg injury and the question will be will he be at full strength? and facing star corner Patrick Peterson will not help his cause. Or perhaps the Cardinals may elect to put Antonio Cromartie on the hobbled Jones and match Peterson up against the savvy Roddy White, either way its good to have tall and fast corners on the edge in this game, especially when the falcons do not have that usual weapon at tight end to make things difficult.
Look for the Falcons to try and get Steven Jackson to return to form as he too is coming off of an injury,but up against last years number one rush defense that was a hard task as the Cardinals held Jackson to a tough six yards on 11 carries, and much will not change in that regard as the cards will make the Falcons one dimensional by the second half of this one.
The falcons have some veterans on the defensive line but not fast enough to contend with the speed coming out of the backfield and off the line of scrimmage.
This will be a game where the Cardinals cannot afford to lose, because they would fall to far behind the two division leaders, and a game like this could end up going either way but all of the key match-ups would suggest the Cardinals to win on the road.
What kind of Falcon team will show up next year? if they look like the playoff team they were two years ago this will be a “game of the week” type of game. But if they struggle to get back from their injuries and lack of production the Cardinals may do exactly what they did last year and run away with this one.
That being said by this point of the season the Cards should be light years ahead of the Falcons and will win this game on the road to pull their record to 8-4, a pivotal win on the season as well because the division foes are on the schedule to finish and those games will be very difficult to win in a row.