Larry Fitzgerald: Mindset hasn’t changed despite lack of touches
During their current four-game slide, the Arizona Cardinals have reached futile levels on offense not seen since their days in Sun Devil Stadium.
In two of their past four losses — including Monday night’s 24-3 prime time blowout at the hands of the 49ers — the Redbirds failed to reach the end zone.
It’s a feat which previously hadn’t been reached since a Nov. 2004 loss to the Jets.
2004 also happened to be the rookie season of Arizona’s star wideout Larry Fitzgerald. Unfortunately for the four-time Pro Bowler, of late, 2012 has been eerily similar to his first year in the league.
Over his last two games, Fitzgerald has just nine catches for a pedestrian 82 yards. It’s the second time this season the Cardinals’ top offensive threat has amassed less than 100 yards receiving over a two-game span.
Fitzgerald said Thursday that opposing defenses are not covering him any differently in 2012 than they have been over his previous eight years in the league, but it’s hard to believe that a decrease in productivity hasn’t begun to weigh on the talented wide receiver.
The former No. 3 overall pick, however, is adamant that nothing’s changed for him.
“I know what I am and who I am,” Fitzgerald. “That’s not going to change based on week-to-week numbers wise. My focus is more on getting it going as a whole.”
Getting it going Sunday may not be as easy as turning on a light switch. On top of the numerous issues the Cardinals continue to have up front with their offensive line, a Week 9 matchup with the Packers means a heavy dose of Charles Woodson, Tramon Williams and Casey Hayward for Fitzgerald.
Green Bay’s talented secondary trio has 104 tackles and seven interceptions, but Fitzgerald still remains steadfast in his belief that the tide will soon turn for both he and the Cardinals offense.
“I’ll get my plays,” said Fitzgerald. “I know it’s a long season. You have 16 games and 17 weeks of ball. I’ll make some shots. There haven’t been many thus far, but it’s going to happen.”
Fitzgerald has faced Green Bay just twice in eight seasons, with both appearances coming back in 2009. In Week 17, the Cardinals wide receiver had one of the worst games of his career, catching only three passes for 17 yards. A week later, Fitzgerald redeemed himself with two touchdown catches in Arizona’s wild 51-45 playoff win over the Packers.