Arizona Cardinals vs St. Louis Rams: Preview, prediction

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The Arizona Cardinals play their second NFC West game in a row as they host the St. Louis Rams. 

The Arizona Cardinals stay at home for an NFC West showdown with the St. Louis Rams. The Rams (1-2) lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers last week, 12-6, in a game that was overshadowed by the injury of Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. On the other hand, the Arizona Cardinals (3-0) routed the San Francisco 49ers, 47-7, in a game where the Cardinals defense picked off Colin Kaepernick four times.

History: The Cardinals and the Rams have faced each other 75 times in the regular season, with the Cardinals playing 28 of these games as the St. Louis Cardinals and 13 of these as the Chicago Cardinals. The Arizona Cardinals have an all time 36-37-2 record against the St. Louis Rams. The latest win against the Rams came in Week 15 of last season. The Arizona Cardinals won by a score of 12-6 in a game where back up quarterback Drew Stanton injured is knee which ended his 2014 season.

What: Arizona Cardinals vs St. Louis Rams

Where: University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, AZ

When: 1:25 PM Arizona Time (4:25 PM EST)


Radio: Arizona Sports 98.7 FM

Keys to victory:

The biggest story line this week is the Arizona Cardinals debut of guard Mike Iupati. With the addition of Iupati to an all ready high performing offensive line, the sky is the limit. The Rams lead the league, along with the Patriots, for the most sacks this season with 13. It will be a challenging task for the offensive line to give Carson Palmer enough time to make throws and keep him on his feet.

Carson Palmer has started off the season fast, and should keep his hot streak going against the Rams. While the St. Louis Rams have for the most part kept quarterbacks at bay this season, Carson Palmer should be able to make the necessary adjustments to put points on the board and lead this team to victory. With the rejuvenation of receiver Larry Fitzgerald, and John Brown waiting to go off at any given moment Carson Palmer should have plenty of opportunities to consistently move the offense down the field.

A pleasant surprise this season has been the play of wider receiver Larry Fitzgerald who has been the beneficiary of great quarterback play. Fitzgerald leads the league in touchdown catches with 5, and should add a few more to this stat by the game’s end. While Fitzgerald has been playing lights out, the relatively quiet season that John Brown is having is surprising. This game is a prime opportunity for John Brown to have his break out game. Palmer will need to get rid of the ball quickly since the Rams defensive front will be putting constant pressure on Palmer and the offensive line, and throwing screens to Brown just may help him get out of his rut.