The Arizona Cardinals’ success over the last three-and-a-half years rests almost wholly on the shoulders of Michael Bidwill, Steve Keim and Bruce Arians. They deserve every ounce of credit they’ve received.
A loss tonight for Arizona would fall squarely on Keim and Arians. No, this isn’t a hot seat column. If the Cardinals lose, Keim and Arians are 100 percent the right men in the right roles to get the problems solved. For some reason in sports, when mistakes are made, there’s a faction of fans who immediately believe that job loss is the only solution.
A loss tonight would remove a large amount of shine.
Steve Keim’s first-round pick over the last two drafts has played in one of an available 20 games in their respective rookie seasons and it will be 21 if Robert Nkemdiche doesn’t play tonight.
Marqui Christian was either a bad draft pick to get cut five months after he was drafted or an example of poor roster manipulation to lose him in order to keep an ineffective, injured punter on the roster.
Drew Butler was kept for a week and then released. If Butler was cut sooner, Christian would still be a Cardinal.
As of now, the entire 2016 draft class for Arizona has done more to lose games than they’ve done to win them.
Bruce Arians chose to do very little with his offense in the pre-season, believing beating the defense in training camp was a more effective gage of preparation than beating an opposing team in a “game” like setting. Any offensive play-caller has an entire week to study the defense and come up with an effective gameplan. In the regular season to this point, the only team to not score in the first quarter is the Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals were not prepared to start the season and the offense hasn’t been prepared to start the games.
I believe the Arizona Cardinals are going to win tonight. I still think Arizona is going to the playoffs. Keim and Arians deserve the credit if I’m right. If the Cardinals lose in Lambeau, Seattle or anywhere else on the road in January, most analysts will “break down” the game. I won’t point the finger at a bad turnover, a bad play call or a blown referee’s decision, I’ll look back to August and September.