Predicting the Arizona Cardinals’ wins and losses of 2022
Come on down for another round of Arizona Cardinals predictions!
It’s time to turn our attention to the Cardinals’ 2022 slate of games. And it’s certainly no picnic.
The Cardinals’ strength of schedule ranks as the second toughest in the league with a 2021 opponent winning percentage of 54.3%. Only the Los Angeles Rams have it tougher (56.7%).
Arizona’s gauntlet of a schedule, plus questions surrounding numerous position groups and head coach Kliff Kingsbury’s track record of his teams falling off in the second half of seasons, are all factors that could play greatly into the win-loss column.
But while FanDuel Sportsbook has Arizona’s win total this season at 8.5 games, I believe this team has more than enough talent, especially on offense, to surpass that mark and finish 10-7.
Under Kingsbury, the Cardinals have seen their record improve year over year, highlighted by a postseason berth in 2021. This might be Kingsbury’s toughest test as a head coach, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility he can’t keep that streak alive, especially given all the changes a team goes through over the course of a season.
So without further ado, a look at how I believe Arizona’s season will shake out:
Arizona Cardinals’ 2022 record prediction
Week 1 vs. Kansas City Chiefs — Loss (0-1)
My original prediction was that the Cardinals were going to prove a lot of doubters wrong with another big season-opening win, this time against the Chiefs.
But following starting cornerback Antonio Hamilton’s cooking accident that resulted in the CB being placed on the non-football injury list, the Chiefs just have too much firepower to contend with.
I think Arizona has more of a shot than most think but the secondary will have to play a near-perfect game against Patrick Mahomes and Co.
Week 2 @ Las Vegas Raiders — Loss (0-2)
From one AFC West juggernaut to the next.
Offensively, the Raiders went out and swung a massive trade for wide receiver Davante Adams, former college running mate of Raiders QB Derek Carr.
Then you have Cardinals all-time sack leader Chandler Jones, who faces off against his former team for the first time since signing with the Raiders as a free agent. He now forms a formidable pass-rushing duo alongside Maxx Crosby.
This is where DeAndre Hopkins’ absence will really be felt.
Week 3 vs. Los Angeles Rams — Loss (0-3)
No, the sky’s not falling, though after three consecutive losses, many will assume as much.
Coming off a Super Bowl run that included a lopsided Wild Card victory over Arizona, Los Angeles is poised to come out of the gate hot.
Aaron Donald is back and offseason addition Bobby Wagner only helps an already stout Rams defense.
Matthew Stafford also has another weapon at his disposal in wide receiver Allen Robinson to pair with 2021 Offensive Player of the Year and No. 1 option Cooper Kupp.
Week 4 @ Carolina Panthers — Win (1-3)
Since 2016, Arizona sports an 0-6 record against Carolina. The last time the Cardinals beat the Panthers was back in 2013.
For whatever reason, Carolina has had Arizona’s number in recent memory.
That all comes to an end in Week 4.
Carolina sees an upgrade at quarterback in offseason acquisition Baker Mayfield, but there are just too many question marks surrounding the Panthers.
Running back Christian McCaffrey hasn’t made it more than three games into the last two seasons without dealing with an injury, seeing a total of 10 contests.
Week 5 vs. Philadelphia Eagles — Win (2-3)
The monkey-off-the-back win in Carolina pours into a victory at home over Philadelphia.
This one I see turning into a duel between quarterbacks Jalen Hurts and Kyler Murray, both on the ground and through the air.
Week 6 @ Seattle Seahawks — Win (3-3)
The Cardinals should have no problem handling a Russell Wilson-less Seahawks squad.
Week 7 vs. New Orleans Saints — Win (4-3)
Hopkins is back in black and it’s sure to be a show on Thursday Night Football.
Week 8 @ Minnesota Vikings — Win (5-3)
A missed field goal decided last year’s outcome in favor of the Cardinals.
The Vikings have weapons on offense, highlighted by wide receiver Justin Jefferson and running back Dalvin Cook, but quarterback Kirk Cousins lacks consistency.
Arizona should pull away in this one early.
Week 9 vs. Seattle Seahawks — Win (6-3)
The Seahawks could roll out a different starting quarterback by now. And even then, it wouldn’t matter. Arizona should dominate.
Week 10 @ Los Angeles Rams — Win (7-3)
What’s this? The Cardinals go into L.A. and knock off the Rams?
One or two plays is going to determine a defining win for Kingsbury and Co.
Week 11 vs. San Francisco 49ers — Win (8-3)
Maybe it’s Trey Lance. Maybe it’s Jimmy Garoppolo.
The defense is elite and San Francisco’s offense is littered with playmakers, but there’s too much uncertainty at QB to trust that the 49ers are going to be that same NFC Championship-caliber team.
Week 12 vs. Los Angeles Chargers — Loss (8-4)
The win streak finally comes to an end against a very talented Chargers squad.
The trio of Austin Ekeler, Keenan Allen and Justin Herbert is a top NFL threat offensively.
Week 13 — Bye
Week 14 vs. New England Patriots — Win (9-4)
After a week of recharging, the Cardinals bounce back into the win column against Bill Belichick and the Patriots.
I see a strong defensive effort coming on Arizona’s end in this one.
Week 15 @ Denver Broncos — Loss (9-5)
Just because he left the NFC West doesn’t mean the Cardinals don’t have to face Wilson this season.
And much like he did during his time in Seattle, the recently extended signal caller proves to be the thorn in Arizona’s side once again.
Week 16 vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Loss (9-6)
There are a lot of questions surrounding quarterback Tom Brady.
If he’s suited up, he’s going to give Arizona’s secondary a real test.
But if for some reason he isn’t under center on Christmas, this could very well be a Cardinals win.
Week 17 @ Atlanta Falcons — Win (10-6)
Marcus Mariota isn’t Matt Ryan, and with no Calvin Ridley, Atlanta’s offense isn’t scaring anyone.
Week 18 @ San Francisco 49ers — Loss (10-7)
The Cardinals have lost every one of their season finales under Kingsbury. That trend continues in 2022.