Vance Joseph’s version of the Arizona Cardinals defense may actually be worse than the unit who took to the field last season
For fans of the Arizona Cardinals, this past Sunday’s defeat at the hands of the Carolina Panthers was incredibly difficult to watch. The club’s offense, for three quarters at least, showed some fight. The Cards defense, on the other hand, stunk up the joint throughout the entire afternoon.
It looked as if the Cardinals had made a good move back in January when they hired Vance Joseph to be their defensive coordinator. Many believed that the former head coach of the Denver Broncos knew how to stop the offenses of the NFL. Based on what he has shown thus far in 2019, however, it appears as if the 47-year old Joseph doesn’t have a clue.
Kyle Allen, the Carolina quarterback who was making just his second professional start, basically had his way with Joseph’s group of defenders. Following a fumble on his squad’s opening drive, the 23-year old proceeded to torch the Arizona secondary for 261 passing yards and four touchdowns. Allen’s 144.4 passer rating should be downright embarrassing for Joseph, an experienced assistant who should’ve been able to dial up something to stop the youngster at some point.
Of course, the built-in excuse right now for the Cards is that they’re playing without cornerback Patrick Peterson. The eight-time Pro Bowler will miss three more contests because of a suspension for using PEDs. But as good as Peterson is, the Cardinals still have enough talent on the defensive side of the ball to compete much better than they have.
It’s become frighteningly apparent that Arizona isn’t going to win much with Joseph at the helm. The return of Peterson will help, but the team would likely benefit from bringing in someone else to be in charge of their defense. Making that change pronto could perhaps help salvage a season that is quickly spiraling downward for Kliff Kingsbury and the Cards.