Kliff Kingsbury: Cardinals must ‘tighten everything up’ ahead of Rams tilt
TEMPE — The Arizona Cardinals are undoubtedly holding their heads higher than they were a week prior after knocking off the Las Vegas Raiders in overtime.
Down 20-0 at one point, Arizona mounted one of the biggest comebacks in franchise history in the 29-23 win.
Defensively, the unit flipped the script from the first to second half, limiting a dangerous Raiders offense to just a field goal over the final two quarters.
On the offensive end, Kyler Murray and Co. found their stride, with the signal caller flashing his abilities through the air and on the ground.
But for all the good feelings that came out of it in the end, you can’t forget what got the Cardinals in that spot in the first place: a downright ugly first half of football, highlighted by negative plays, penalties and an early sack and pressure on the QB.
And with another tough task in the Los Angeles Rams next up on the docket, Arizona can’t bank on another comeback to right its wrongs.
“Talent and effort is something that we know we have,” Kingsbury told Arizona Sports’ Wolf & Luke on Monday. “We see it each and every day with the way our guys work and the type of roster we have.
“But the mistakes, it’s coaching, it’s playing, it’s all of it. We’ve got to tighten everything up and the first two weeks haven’t been the standard for us as far as execution goes and play calling and all of those things in all three phases.”
That’s not to say the Rams are the juggernaut they were last season, however.
Los Angeles hasn’t had the best start to the season, losing in an embarrassing fashion in Week 1 before narrowly squeaking out a victory against a questionable Atlanta Falcons team in Week 2.
Defensively, the Rams have allowed at least 27 points in each of their first two matchups. On the other side of the football, quarterback Matthew Stafford and the offense are clearly still working out the kinks.
After a win like the Cardinals had on Sunday, Arizona has to capitalize off of all the good that came out of that momentum-fostering victory while still getting down to business to remedy all the bad that was on display.
The first divisional game of the season is here. And with the NFC West up for grabs, it cannot be taken lightly.
– Kingsbury on running back James Conner, who left the Week 2 tilt with an ankle injury:
“He’ll be day to day. He’s a tough guy. We just wanted to make sure he was 100% if we were going to put him back in.”