The Arizona Cardinals will greatly improve their chances of winning tomorrow if they find a way to keep Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields from maximizing his dual-threat ability. And given the timing of the game in Week 16, there will be several players on the hot seat looking to show they deserve to stay in the desert next season.
One player is EDGE rusher Zaven Collins, who needs a huge final three games to garner serious consideration to stick around. Recently, Collins has been about as uninspiring on the pass rush as one could get, having logged zero sacks, zero tackles for loss, zero quarterback hits, and zero quarterback pressures in the last four games.
There may not be another player on the Cardinals defense in more of a need to enjoy a bigger game than Collins, and if he’s going to have one, it may as well come against one of the league’s better scrambling quarterbacks.
Arizona Cardinals EDGE rusher could be an unsung hero in Week 16
Quite a few players are also in need of a big game on both sides of the ball, but few are on a hotter seat than Collins. It’s tough enough being a player who was “inherited” from the previous general manager, and it’s even tougher when the former general manager rarely did a fine job in bringing in sound talent via the draft.
There are inherited players from the Steve Keim era who general manager Monti Ossenfort will be happy to keep on board, like Trey McBride, Budda Baker, and Jalen Thompson. McBride has made more strides than perhaps anyone else this season while Baker and Thompson remain a top duo.
But for the time being, Collins remains on the outside looking in. He can start to change that narrative with a big game tomorrow, plus a pair of sound follow-up performances in the coming two weeks.
(Statistics provided by Pro-Football-Reference)