3 Arizona Cardinals players who will be X-Factors in Week 15 vs. the 49ers

This is one of those games when every member of the Arizona Cardinals will be an X-Factor, but three players rise above the rest.

Nov 19, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Arizona Cardinals safety Jalen Thompson (34) reacts after making
Nov 19, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Arizona Cardinals safety Jalen Thompson (34) reacts after making / Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
2 of 3
Next
Jalen Thompson
Arizona Cardinals v Pittsburgh Steelers / Joe Sargent/GettyImages

2 - Jalen Thompson, S

While Budda Baker continues to struggle through an up and down season, Jalen Thompson has become arguably the best player on the Arizona Cardinals defense. In a game vs. such a tough opponent, the Cards have little chance of winning if the 25-year-old does not bring one of his better on-field performances of the year.

While the Cardinals are a 3-10 team with a struggling defense, Thompson is enjoying perhaps his best season with 62 combined tackles, three interceptions, 49 return yards, five passes defensed, a sack, three quarterback hits, and four stops for a loss. He’s been particularly brilliant in his previous three games, with 22 tackles, a sack, two quarterback hits, two passes defensed, and an interception for 14 return yards. 

The Cardinals need similar numbers from the Pro Bowl-caliber safety if they plan on holding the 49ers passing and running games in check. If Thompson brings his best performance of the year, the 49ers won’t be scoring 35 points in this one.