Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt is extremely disappointed with his team after its poor performance in Kansas City during Friday’s 27-17 loss to the Chiefs.
His solution: play the starters until they “get it right”.
“I’m displeased with all units,” said Whisenhunt after Monday’s practice in Flagstaff. “There are a few players that are doing what we want them to do, but there aren’t enough of the 22 starters that are getting it done the way we want to get it done.”
While the stall in offensive production can be attributed to inconsistent quarterback play, the unfortunate surprise of the Cardinals’ preseason is the lackluster performance of the defense, a unit that was the strength of the team down the stretch in 2011.
“You can have confidence because of the way we played last year but it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be good,” Whisenhunt said. “We’ll see if our guys can get back to that point, [but] we’re just not getting it done in the game. The sense of urgency with our team has got to pick up.”
The Cardinals have three more games to iron out the kinks before the regular season starts on September 9th, and Whisenhunt has no problem using the rest of the preseason to address the team’s uninspiring performance.
Asked how long he will leave the starters on the field in Friday’s exhibition game against Oakland, Whisenhunt says there is no set playing time for his first-team units.
“Our starters may play the whole game,” he said. “There may be some guys that come out but as of right now there’s no reason to save anybody. When I feel like we’re making progress with our team in the areas that we need to make progress, then we’ll look at the young guys.”
Although this may rob time from inexperienced players vying for a spot on the 53-man roster, Whisenhunt is clear about what he expects in practice, telling his team that their effort in training camp this week will dictate whether they find playing time or not.
“I’m not going to be crazy,” he assures. “If somebody is doing a nice job I’m not going to leave them in the game because we do want to look at some of our [other] players. But I’m not real concerned about the number of snaps this week.
“When they get it right, maybe they’ll come out.”