Sunday, August 13, 2017

Arizona Cardinals - 2017 NFL Season Preview

ARIZONA CARDINALS                                                

2016 Record -  7-8-1

Head Coach -  Bruce Arians

Offensive Rank9th  (367 yards per game, 26.1 points scored per game)

Defensive Rank 2nd  (305 yards allowed per game, 22.6 points allowed per game)

Back for another season to start at quarterback will be Carson Palmer following last season's effort when he threw for 4,233 yards with 26 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. Blaine Gabbert (925 passing yards, five TD, six INT) comes over from San Francisco and will battle it out with Drew Stanton for the reserve spot.
David Johnson (1,239 rushing yards and 16 TD, also 80 receptions for 879 yards and four TD) is the primary running back and will be backed up by Kerwynn Williams and rookie T.J. Logan (North Carolina). The wide receivers will be Larry Fitzgerald (107 receptions, 1,023 yards and six TD) and John Brown, who had 39 grabs for 517 yards and two touchdowns. Rookie Chad Williams (Grambling State), J.J. Nelson (34, 568, six TD) and tight end Jermaine Gresham (37, 391, two TD) will also be relied upon this season.
The defense has pass rush stalwarts Markus Golden (12 1/2 QB sacks) and Chandler Jones (11 sacks) leading the way for the NFL's top sack defense, which recorded 44 last season. Veterans Frostee Rucker and Karlos Dansby are in the fold as well.
Patrick Peterson (three interceptions) leads the secondary along with Antoine Bethea, Tyrann Mathieu and rookies Budda Baker (Washington) and Rudy Ford (Auburn) for the Cardinals, who intercepted 14 passes a year ago while giving just 210 passing yards per game.

OUTLOOK FOR 2017 - Arizona slipped to a losing record in 2016 a year after reaching the NFC Championship Game, so they will be looking to rebound behind Palmer and company on offense while the defense will be looking to maintain their level of solid play. Running back David Johnson's 20 touchdowns led the NFL last season.
The Cardinals ranked second overall on defense last year and also led the league with 44 quarterback sacks. There has been a lot of roster moves in the off-season as several new faces are in camp this year replacing no less than six defensive players from last season. The key for Arizona will be maintaining health as they are one of the older teams in the NFL as far as key personnel is concerned.
Head Coach Bruce Arians is one of the better ones in getting through his message to the team and they play hard for him. Whether or not that translates to enough wins this season remains to be seen, but the Cards will likely be in the mix for the NFC playoff race in 2017. Expect the Cardinals to make a push as they probably go 9-7 this season.

Week One - at Detroit
Week Two - at Indianapolis
Week Three - vs. Dallas
Week Four - vs. San Francisco
Week Five - at Philadelphia
Week Six - vs. Tampa Bay
Week Seven - at LA Rams (London, England)
Week Eight - BYE
Week Nine - at San Francisco
Week Ten - vs. Seattle
Week Eleven - at Houston
Week Twelve - vs. Jacksonville
Week Thirteen - vs. LA Rams
Week Fourteen - vs. Tennessee
Week Fifteen - at Washington
Week Sixteen - vs. NY Giants
Week Seventeen - at Seattle

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