Arizona Cardinals keys to victory in week seven
Light up the pass rush
The Cardinals also proved last week that the pass rush hasn’t missed a beat without Chandler Jones. Haason Reddick was cooking and Dennis Gardeck made his presence known when they called his number.
Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton was belittled, confused, hit, and almost sacked for a safety while the Cowboys offense put up a meager 10 points against a vastly improving Cardinals defense. We can attribute much of this to a pass rush that appeared to be in the backfield every time Dalton dropped back.
Now don’t get this wrong. Russell Wilson is light years ahead of Andy Dalton. Wilson’s a candidate to win the league MVP award, and rightfully so, while Dalton is a high-end backup.
But few quarterbacks operate efficiently when they face pressure and containment. Wilson and the Seahawks offense have proven they can move the ball and score on anyone and besides Wilson, they have emerging stars at receiver and a workhorse in running back Chris Carson.
The pass rush needs a repeat performance from the last two weeks. Dennis Gardeck has gotten hot and made the most of his opportunities. The Cardinals returned Reddick to the outside and he has blossomed so far with 4.0 sacks on the season. Devon Kennard has stepped up when healthy as well.
The defensive line has continued to get a push and contribute in the sack column as well. And we can’t forget about Budda Baker, who showed off his inner-Troy Polamalu last week against Dallas when lined up in the box. An effort that awarded him the NFC Defensive Player of the Week award.