The Arizona Cardinals hashed it out with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers down in Glendale, Arizona over the weekend. Cards fans are not only raving about what newly acquired Cardinal – Adrian Peterson – did in his debut, but also what the Cardinals did collectively as a group to defeat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After all was said and done, the final score was 38 to 33, and with that the hopes of this Cardinal team to make a run for the playoffs was restored. Although, it might have only been one game the Arizona Cardinals made a splash this weekend with a group effort to defeat a young and upcoming Bucs team. Throughout the game the Offense, Defense, and Special Teams all played big parts in Sundays win over the Buccaneers.
- The offensive line of the Arizona Cardinals played its best game of the year on Sunday only allowing 2 sacks and its fewest Quarterback hurries of the year. With most everyone healthy on the Cardinals offensive line – with the single exception of Mike Iupati – this looks like the best version of the Arizona Cardinals offense we’ve seen all year. If the Cardinals can stay healthy on the offensive line then we could see a completely different team starting this week.
- Since Quarterback Carson Palmer was rarely touched by a top pass rushing team from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, he had his best game of the season in which he went 18 for 22 on his passes and had 283 yards with 3 touchdowns.
- Adrian Peterson was a force to be reckoned with throughout the entire game as he had 26 carries for 134 yards which is by far a season-high. However, with David Johnson coming back in a little over a month these two could single handily get the Cardinals to the post season.
- Tyrann Mathieu still isn’t back to his honey badger ways quite yet. With such poor play from him – and who knows with the way his contract is set up – he might not be a Cardinal come 2018. Thankfully, both Cardinal Safety’s Antione Bethea and Tyvon Branch have put on a clinic and have truly been “ball hawking” safeties this year.
- The Cardinals gave up just about 30 unanswered points, and this I believe shows just how important Cornerback Patrick Peterson is. Immediately after his exit in the third quarter due to quad injury the Cardinals could not keep Wide Receiver Mike Evans in check. Thankfully, Patrick Peterson says he’ll play this weekend in London.
- Outside Linebacker Chandler Jones has been nothing short of dominate all season long. Personally, I thought after the Cardinals lost Linebacker Markus Golden that Jones wouldn’t be as productive as he’s been. Boy was I wrong, week in and week out Chandler Jones proves why he deserved that rich contract extension over the Summer.
- Overall, a great effort from the Special Teams collectively. But more specifically from the Punting unit as Punter Andy Lee is coming into his own here in Phoenix since he is constantly flipping the field for the Cardinals.
Overall maybe I was too quick to judge this Cardinal team last week. With a record of 3-3 we could possibly tie division rivals Los Angeles Rams (NFC West leaders) if we could pull down a win in London. The Cardinals showed some life and a lot of it is owed to newly acquired Cardinal Adrian Peterson. However, the game in London is a must win for the Cardinals if they wish to keep pace with the Rams and the Seahawks. If the Cardinals are so lucky to escape with a win on Sunday we could be talking about a 4-3 ballclub with an easier schedule ahead. Stay tuned.
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