Arizona Cardinals tempo remains an overlooked part of the offense

Az Cardinals 2022 Draft Choices 07
Az Cardinals 2022 Draft Choices 07 /

The Arizona Cardinals have painted themselves as an uptempo offensive team under Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury.

An area for improvement in the 2022 season is controlling the offense’s tempo. More specifically, being more productive on second down will help accomplish that task.

Why is second down so important? According to, for a play to be successful. It must do the following:

  • Gain 40 percent of the yardage needed on the first
  • 60 percent second down
  • Gain 100 percent on third down. has the Cardinals ranked eighth at the end of the 2021 NFL season in successful play analysis. Seeing that the Rams were ranked third, this is an area the Cardinals must improve on to win the division in 2022.

How do the Cardinals get there? First, Arizona has to cut down on penalties. 60 percent of a second-and-long situation of 10 yards or more puts a lot of pressure on an offense to produce.

Remember, James Conner had only 3.7 yards per rushing attempt last season. However, the 2022 Cardinals may have a new weapon in running back Keaontay Ingram.

Keaontay Ingram could have a vital role in the Arizona Cardinals’ offense.

Ingram was the Arizona Cardinals’ sixth-round pick from USC in April’s draft. Ingram is already familiar with the Air Raid system as this was the offense USC ran in 2021.

Looking back at the USC-Notre Dame game last season, Ingram exceeded second-down expectations in most situations.

If Ingram didn’t get the first down, the resulting play put the Trojans in a manageable 3rd down scenario. In that game, Ingram rushed for 138 yards, which had to impress NFL scouts.

Standing 6′ tall and weighing 216 pounds, Ingram has the size and the ability to take some of the workload off of James Conner. Ingram need not be a game breaker, but he had his share of big plays both at USC and Texas during his college career.

Rondale Moore and Eno Benjamin may be more suitable for their big play role. All Ingram needs to worry about is consistently producing in the run game.

Don’t be surprised to see him add to the passing game as well. Keaontay Ingram should get enough reps at practice and during the preseason to find his way onto the roster.

His last season at USC was his best rushing the ball during his college career. There is no reason  Ingram shouldn’t give us a lot of tape to review as an Arizona Cardinal.

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