For all the worry about the Arizona Cardinals’ 19-13 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday, one thing you do not hear being talked about is the offensive line.
Arizona’s group was…umm…good.
“I thought our offensive line played extremely well,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Monday afternoon.
The starting group consisting of Jared Veldheer, Ted Larsen, Lyle Sendlein, Paul Fanaika and Bobby Massie gave quarterback Carson Palmer time to throw. While he had to move around in the pocket a bit, he was not sacked in the game.
“It’s a very good front and they also brought a lot of pressures for a third preseason game,” Palmer said Sunday night. “They brought cover zero a handful of times that you don’t typically see. I thought we reacted pretty well up front to some of the situations that they put us in.”
The results may not have shown up on the scoreboard, but the lack of concern over a group that entered training camp unsettled at right tackle and right guard, lost its starting center for a stretch with an injury and has since seen the presumed starting left guard miss time with turf toe has to be viewed as a very big positive.
And while there are no guarantees that the starting five from Sunday’s game will play every snap together this season, there’s little doubt the team’s front five has come a very long way. And the better the offensive line plays, the better the offense, as a whole, should perform.
“You look at last year’s tape, particularly at this time, our offensive line has played significantly better than it did a year ago from today,” Cardinals GM Steve Keim told Doug and Wolf on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Monday. “And the fact that we have the ability to make explosive plays on the offensive side of the ball is encouraging.”