Last-minute bold prediction for the Arizona Cardinals Week 16 matchup

The Arizona Cardinals are playing a solid running defense, but with a three-headed attack, one running back will rise substantially above the others.

Dec 17, 2023; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back James Conner (6) runs for a
Dec 17, 2023; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back James Conner (6) runs for a / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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When you look at Arizona Cardinals running backs, you may not have thought they would have the potential to transform into a solid committee. But that fortunately hasn’t been the case lately, as the trio performed so well, they could be set in stone for next season

Thanks to their overall performance last week, it’s also become clear they can run well against any defense on any given week, so the Chicago Bears shouldn’t be any more challenging than what the San Francisco 49ers were. In my bold predictions earlier in the week, I stated the Cards running game would enjoy another epic outing, specifically projecting them to hit 150 yards, but one back will get the bulk of that number today. 

James Conner fuels Arizona Cardinals ground game with 85 rushing yards

James Conner will once again show off his hard running style, and on 15 carries, he will rush for 85 yards, and two rushing touchdowns, good for 5.6 yards per carry. This will hopefully open more passing lanes for quarterback Kyler Murray so he too can pitch in, but Conner’s running will ultimately lift the Cards in this one, or at the absolute least, make it a game worth watching until the end. 

The performance will also give Conner his highest rushing yards total since he joined the Arizona Cardinals, which currently sits at the 782 he gained in 2022. And if he indeed scores two more touchdowns, it will also tie the number of times he reached the end zone last season on the ground. 

Overall, the last-minute bold prediction isn’t just Conner leading the Cardinals offense to at least a solid performance today, he will also be tying and setting new highs for his time with the Cardinals. And who knows, maybe such a performance will foreshadow a couple more solid games that will allow Conner to end the season with an overall career-high in single-season rushing yards, which were the 973 he gained in 2018 with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

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(Statistics provided by Pro-Football-Reference)