Expectations for Arizona Cardinals plummet following defeat
Any positive vibes that were surrounding the Arizona Cardinals have gone out the window following their opening-day defeat
There was such positivity encircling the Arizona Cardinals over the past few weeks. The return of star running back David Johnson had fans feeling confident about a fresh offense that was being implemented. A newly-installed defensive system was forcing turnovers at a rapid pace, making many observers believe that a 4-3 alignment was the way to go.
One ugly defeat later, much of the optimism has gone away. Coming out on the losing end of a ballgame is one thing. Having your lunch handed to you at home, by a mediocre squad like the Washington Redskins no less, is quite another.
The Cardinals were beaten 24-6 by the team from the nation’s capital, but it actually felt much worse than the score would indicate. It was totally frustrating watching a defense that had no clue on how to stop the run. The Redskins gashed Arizona for 182 yards on the ground, and also killed the big red defense with screen passes.
As bad as the defenders were, however, the offensive side of the ball was worse. Unless things get dramatically better, it appears that free agent pickup Sam Bradford will once again be stealing money. The $20 million man’s passes were weak and off-target, and the veteran finished the horrendous day with a putrid 25.9 quarterback rating.
The scariest part of the shellacking was the obvious ineptitude of first-time head coach Steve Wilks and his staff. The Cards seemed ill-prepared for the matchup, and the coaches appeared to make zero adjustments once things started going awry. Wilks has 15 more chances this season to get things right, so hopefully this embarrassment was the exception and not the norm.
Still, as optimistic as you try to be, doubt has crept in. Any good feelings about the Cardinals have gone away. It’s up to Wilks and his players to put this sad performance in the rearview mirror, and do all that they can to bring those positive vibes back.