The Consensus Week 6: Cardinals take another dip
Early in Bruce Arians’ tenure as the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, his team was regularly handing out beatings to opposing teams.
In fact, in his first three years, the Cardinals beat eight different opponents by more than 20 points. Now, seemingly the tables have turned.
The Philadelphia Eagles dominated the Cardinals in Week 5, excelling in all three phases of the contest in a 34-7 win that was out of hand in the first quarter. Carson Wentz threw four touchdown passes for Philadelphia against a dumbfounded defense and once again Arizona’s offense struggled to run the ball and protect Carson Palmer.
Not surprisingly, the Cardinals’ shoddy performance cost them in this week’s NFL Power Rankings.
Each week in The Consensus, we’ll give you a look at where national outlets (and we here at ArizonaSports.com) are placing the Cardinals in their league pecking order.
Arizona Sports NFL Power Rankings Week 6: Can anyone stop the Chiefs?
Cardinals rank: #25 (▼4)
Acquiring Adrian Peterson feels like a personnel department Hail Mary. —- Dave Burns
Cardinals rank: #24 (▼3)
The Cardinals have had one of the biggest falls this season, opening the year with a 44.3 percent chance of making the playoffs. If they can’t beat the Buccaneers at home this week, their chances could be all but nothing.
Cardinals rank: #28 (▼6)
Watching Bruce Arians’ team get pasted doesn’t quite register. Not sure what Cardinals fans would like to see written here. Hope? This isn’t a very good football team right now, at least not in the sense of playing together. When Carson Palmer is playing well, his offensive line isn’t. When Palmer’s off, look out — the ball might hit you. The pass rush was decent, until Markus Golden went down in Week 4. But none of that matters with Carson Wentz throwing four touchdowns on the secondary. All of this points to how much the absence of a top running back can hurt the offense and defense. Arizona’s time of possession Sunday? 24:13. No bueno.
Cardinals rank: #25 (▼3)
Cardinals rank: #27 (▼6)
That was not a good showing at Philadelphia. The offensive line is bad, but the defense had issues against the Eagles.
Cardinals rank: #25 (▼1)
The fact the Cardinals defense let up as many big plays as it did against the Eagles was shocking. That’s the strength of this team—the one solid thing about it.
Not only did Arizona get embarrassed by Philadelphia’s passing attack, but it also got pushed around far too often in the run game.
Offensively, we’re seeing the same problems on a week-to-week basis. The offensive line is not steady enough. Period. Quarterback Carson Palmer is not good enough or athletic enough to overcome that bad line play at this point in his career. With David Johnson out, there’s no run game to speak of.
It’s a tough offensive situation for Bruce Arians to overcome. When the defense plays like it did Sunday, the Cardinals are going to get smoked.
Cardinals rank: #27 (▼7)
It was brief, like most things in the NFL, but it was fun when the Cardinals were contenders. They play an exciting style on both sides of the ball under Bruce Arians. But they’re simply not a good football team anymore and it’s hard to see a rebound coming. The offensive line isn’t good, there’s not enough offensive playmakers and the defense took on too many losses. If Arians can get them back into playoff contention, it’ll be impressive.
Cardinals rank: #28 (▼5)
Their offensive struggles have been well documented, but it now appears defense has begun to circle the drain, too.
Cardinals rank: #26 (▼4)
Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson are on the same roster. Until Chris Johnson is released.
Cardinals rank: #26 (▼3)
Carson Palmer playing in a one-dimensional offense is starting to take a toll on his 37-year-old body with all those hits taken behind shoddy protection. How much will the trade for Adrian Peterson help? We’re about to find out. It’s also a head-scratcher as to why their pass defense has been so bad with all the talent they have on the back end.
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- Mathieu ready to take next step after Cardinals, Peterson