The level of competition will rise to a much higher plateau on Sunday when the Arizona Cardinals meet the New Orleans Saints
There are fans of the NFL who would argue that the Arizona Cardinals current three-game winning streak is tarnished. Triumphs over questionable competition like the Cincinnati Bengals, Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants have some believing that Kliff Kingsbury‘s crew is a fraud. After all, the combined record of those three franchises is an extremely ugly 3-18 at the moment.
Emerging victorious over a formidable opponent like the New Orleans Saints would be quite a different story, however. This Sunday’s clash in “The Big Easy” obviously poses a challenge for the revitalized Cardinals. It would be especially difficult if Saints head coach Sean Payton decides that two of his most explosive offensive weapons should get back on the field.
Word out of New Orleans is that quarterback Drew Brees is itching to return against the Cards. Even so, Payton could ultimately rule against the 12-time Pro Bowler’s wishes. With a bye week looming next weekend, the Saints coaching staff could come to the conclusion that 14 more days of rest could do the 40-year old Brees a ton of good.
Also working against Brees is the fact that his replacement, Teddy Bridgewater, is performing at a very high level. The 26-year old backup has won five straight as New Orleans’ temporary starter. Unless Brees is 100% healthy, there would appear to be very little reason to send Bridgewater back to the bench this weekend.
Alvin Kamara, the Saints’ stud running back, also has a shot at suiting up against the Cardinals. The two-time Pro Bowler was absent this past Sunday when his teammates beat up on the Chicago Bears. Arizona’s defensive unit would likely be thrilled if Payton kept Kamara on the sideline for the upcoming contest as well.
Defeating a squad like New Orleans, even if Brees and Kamara fail to participate, would be a nice accomplishment. The Cards have already proven that they can handle the creampuffs of the league. It’s now time for Kingsbury’s group to show that they can beat some of the best that pro football has to offer as well.