Arizona Cardinals: Last-second prediction for Preseason Week 1 game vs. Denver

The Arizona Cardinals are squaring off at home vs. the Denver Broncos in just a few short hours. Here is one last BOLD prediction.
Jul 27, 2023; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Carlos Watkins (94) during
Jul 27, 2023; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Carlos Watkins (94) during / Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY

Finally, we get to see the Arizona Cardinals rookies in action along with what those cool, new uniforms will look like on the field. But most importantly, the Cards can take the first step into showing everyone that they can be a viable football team. 

Sure, it’s preseason, and preseason means little as an indicator of what a team is really going to look like come September - just ask the 2008 Detroit Lions or the 2017 Cleveland Browns. Backups and even starting units likely won’t see many complicated formations or packages, but it’s still a time that, with proper evaluation, head coach Jonathan Gannon and his staff can identify and put the best players onto the field for when the games start to count. 

And that can take the team further than many anticipate, even if it means winning only a few more games than their lowly projections. In the case of Week 1, we will likely see the youngest players and the roster’s most fringe prospects get a long look, and that’s where our last-second bold prediction comes in. 

Last-second prediction for the Arizona Cardinals in Preseason Week 1

Someone separates themselves from the competition tonight on the defensive line, a unit that is supposed to be one of the worst if not the worst in football. Despite this, there is plenty of intrigue here, like rookie Dante Stills. 

Regardless of whether a strong performance carries over into the regular season, we can be rest assured that, at least for tonight, and for the duration of preseason, that someone on the defensive front jumps out and at least indicates that the unit isn’t as bad as many pundits believe it is. 

And who knows, maybe a dynamic performance that begins tonight will carry into the regular season? If it does, then even if the Arizona Cardinals stumble through a bad season, at least they could find someone to build the defensive line around. Whether it’s Dante Stills, L.J. Collier, Carlos Watkins, whoever, they will show that there is viable talent on the defensive front.