Arizona Cardinals lose preseason opener to the Oakland Raiders
There weren’t a lot of positives to take from the Arizona Cardinals 31-10 loss to the Oakland Raiders on Friday night. The biggest positive though is the Cardinals came away with no major injuries.
No injuries in a preseason game is always a plus. The Raiders defensive end Mario Edwards was carted off to the locker room in the first half with a leg injury.
A look back at the Cardinals loss will show there is a lot of improvement to be shown on both sides of the ball. Every string from first to fourth have things they can take away from the game and learn from. Here is a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly on Friday night.
More from Raising Zona
- Arizona Cardinals: Could Eric Bieniemy come to the desert?
- Would Jonathan Gannon be a good fit for the Arizona Cardinals?
- Arizona Cardinals: Budda Baker right in his take regarding the next coach
- Arizona Cardinals: 3 reasons new coach should want to work with Murray
- Arizona Cardinals special teams could be completely revamped in 2023
The good: The Cardinals running game
The Cardinals running game looked healthy and alive on all fronts on Friday night. Starting running back David Johnson carried three times for 31 yards. Andre Ellington carried three times for 41 yards. Kerwynn Williams carried the ball six times for 39 yards.
As a team, the Cardinals rushed for 172 yards on 35 carries, a 4.9 yard-per-carry average. All six running backs got carries on Friday night.
The bad: Cardinals special teams
The Cardinals were pretty miserable in most fronts when it came to special teams on Friday night. J.J. Nelson fumbled a punt return to give the ball over to the Raiders deep in Cardinals territory. The turnover cost the Cardinals seven points.
The kick coverage team did not fare much better. They gave up two kick returns for 74 yards, a 37-yard average.
Kicker Chandler Catanzaro went 1-2 in field goal attempts on Friday night. He missed a 41-yard field goal in the second quarter.
The ugly: Cardinals quarterback play
For his part, starting quarterback Carson Palmer did alright. Palmer’s first pass though shouold have been picked off. It wasn’t and Palmer went 3-4 the rest of the drive, which resulted in a field goal. He went 3-5 for 38 yards.
For Drew Stanton and Matt Barkley though, it was a forgettable evening. Stanton went 2-6 for 42-yards with one interception. He almost had a second ball picked off. He was not sharp at all.
Barkley played the most out of all the quarterbacks. He completed just 8-24 passes. He also threw an interception. Jake Coker went 2-5 for 16 yards. Overall a night to learn from for the backups.
If Stanton wishes to become the future starting quarterback for the Cardinals, this was not the way to show it. Granted, this was the first game, a preseason one at that, however this was the first game Stanton played in since proclaiming he re-signed with the Cardinals after being promised a shot after Palmer retires.