Patriots coach Belichick says Cardinals are a talented foe
He's 1-0 in season 13 after his team thrashed the Tennessee Titans 34-13 in Nashville, and is set to host the Arizona Cardinals in Week 2.
A Cardinals team, the three-time Super Bowl champion coach said, that has some of the best players in the NFL.
"I see a very talented team," the coach told Arizona Sports 620's Doug and Wolf when asked what he sees on film. "I think there are some of the very best players at their position on this team."
Belichick pointed to Larry Fitzgerald, Calais Campbell, Adrian Wilson and Patrick Peterson, adding that Arizona's playmaking ability in the kicking game is a real weapon.
"As you know, nothing can turn a game around quicker than a play on special teams."
The Cardinals may need all the help they can get Sunday.
The early betting line for the game has the Cardinals as nearly two-touchdown underdogs, a number that may seem a bit low given the fact that the last time these teams met was a 47-7 Patriots blowout.
That Patriots team was starting Matt Cassel at quarterback, whereas the Cardinals (who would reach the Super Bowl) had Kurt Warner under center.
But that was four years ago, and much has changed. Including, of course, the men under center. Tom Brady is directing one of the league's most dynamic offenses, while some combination of Kevin Kolb and/or John Skelton is and will be slinging the ball around for the Cardinals.
Skelton is nursing an ankle injury but not yet ruled out for the game, though many assume Kolb will get the start Sunday. Team president Michael Bidwill even said as much Tuesday.
All that said, if the Cardinals are to go to Foxborough and pull off the upset they will likely do so behind a strong defensive effort. While Belichick said good things about Arizona's offense, he seemed especially respectful of the team's defense.
"Defensively they're quick and active up front, they cause a lot of negative plays with their speed and the quickness they have on the defensive line," he said.
Belichick singled out pretty much everyone on the defensive side of the ball -- really, he did -- but seemed especially impressed with a secondary that includes Adrian Wilson, Kerry Rhodes and Patrick Peterson.
"I think they have real good size and athleticism in the secondary," he said. "The playmakers that they have in the secondary and linebackers to go with their pass rush and their blitzing scheme up front is dangerous too.
"They're a strong team all the way around."
Both physically and mentally.
Belichick complimented the Cardinals for how they finished their opening week win over Seattle, which included a tenuous defense stand in the final minute of play following a couple of penalties and the Seahawks being granted an extra timeout.
"Last week was a real test of their character," he said. "Kenny's done a real good job coaching the team, and they're playing with a lot of confidence.
"And again, they have a lot of good players, a lot of guys that are really, really hard to deal with."
- Karlos Dansby, Cardinals linebacker - Friday May 10Dansby tells Doug & Wolf how excited he is to be back and how he plans to contribute
- Calais Campbell, AZ Cardinals defensive end - Monday May 6Big #93 talks to the guys about the new coaching staff and becoming more of a leader
- Calais Campbell, Cardinals DE - Friday May 3Campbell talks about his inaugural charity golf tournament debuting this weekend. Also, he gives his
- Andre Ellington, Cardinals RB - Thursday May 2Arizona's 6th round pick joins the show to reminisce on his college career and talk about what he br
- Earl Watford, Cardinals 4th Round Selection - Wednesday May 1Earl Watford talked to Doug & Wolf about his strengths and being drafted out of a small school.