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Blogs

Wednesday before the Seahawks

Posted by Darren Urban on October 16, 2013 – 3:57 pm

When Steve Keim was named general manager of the Cardinals, he pointed to a pair of moments that went through his head that were driving forces in motivating him in his new job. One was the feeling he had standing on the turf at University of Phoenix Stadium after the Cards won the 2008 NFC Championship game, being showered by we’re-going-to-the-Super-Bowl confetti. The other was the feeling he had standing under the gloomy Seattle sky late last season as the Cardinals were getting run over by the Seahawks, 58-0.

No team in the NFL should ever endure a game like that. When it does, it signals that there is much more wrong than just a talent difference. It also tends to leave a bad taste, although for the most part, the Cardinals shrugged it off this week. Center Lyle Sendlein didn’t have much reaction, although he pointed out he was injured by that point in the season and absent. Receiver Larry Fitzgerald was blunt: “Different team, different year. That’s ancient history.”

Indeed, many on the roster not only didn’t play in that game but weren’t even members of the Cardinals. The coaching staff has turned over almost completely. With the Cardinals playing the Seahawks tomorrow night for the first time since then, it doesn’t mean it isn’t remembered this week at all by the Cards still left. But it doesn’t seem to be some major rallying cry either.

“Not a lot of guys were here to experience it,” cornerback Patrick Peterson said. “We brought it up one time in a team breakdown (post-practice) this week and we left it at that. Guys know the magnitude of this game.”

– Turnovers have been brutal for the Cards – eight of them in the three losses – and Bruce Arians certainly hasn’t been happy with it. How to fix it? “Quit doing it,” Arians said. “Hold on to the damn ball and quit throwing it to the other team. It’s really simple. It plagues some teams and right now it’s plaguing us and we have to fix it.”

Arians knows he’s stating the obvious, but especially with the fumbles, he really does believe it’s that simple. Cutting down Carson Palmer’s interceptions is more complicated, especially since Arians said because Fitzgerald has been limited in practice so much because of his hamstring problems “the timing that we had earlier in the season is gone.”

– The drives from the 49ers’ games were still bothering both Cardinals’ coordinators this week – for offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin, it was the failed drive on which Fitzgerald fumbled. For defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, it was the San Francisco possession right after that fumble that lead to the game-sealing touchdown.

“Man, I just feel personally, had we just scored on that second (third-quarter) drive, it’s a whole different ballgame,” Goodwin said. “We had our mojo. Anytime you turn the ball over you lose momentum and you put your defense in a bad situation. If we could just stop turning it over. You can see the development of our offense coming along. We just have to stop killing ourselves.”

Bowles said his unit’s problem was that suddenly, players started trying to do way too much and overcompensated in the idea of making a big play and ending the drive. So players were out of position and the Niners ran it right down the field.

“Guys trying to make a play and going over the top or going underneath to do something they didn’t need to do,” Bowles said. “Opening things up and we couldn’t get off the field.”

– Fines from last week’s games don’t usually get confirmed until Fridays, but a couple of players involved apparently spoke up. Mike Jurecki reported that nose tackle Alameda Ta’amu was fined $10,000 for kicking 49ers guard Alex Boone, while Matt Maiocco reported Boone was dinged $7,875 after swiping at Ta’amu before the kick.

– Hard to believe the last time the Seahawks visited, Russell Wilson was quarterbacking his first NFL game. He’s built quite a résumé in a very short period of time.

– Rookie Andre Ellington is averaging 7.04 yards per carry, best among NFL running backs with at least 25 carries this season.

– I think it’d be an upset if Calais Campbell doesn’t play. I think he’s fine and his scare from last weekend won’t impact his play. Which is a good thing. Campbell always plays well against the Seahawks and the Cards need him.

– The Cardinals haven’t won a division game since beating the Seahawks here last season in the opener. However this game turns out will influence greatly how this season plays out for the Cards.

RoberstSeaUSE


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Posted in Blog | 20 Comments »


20 Responses to “Wednesday before the Seahawks”

  1. By erik on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    Give Ellington the ball!!!!

  2. By Eric G on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    This is definitely a must win game. The Cards can’t afford to fall 3 games behind the hawks. I hope Arians runs the dang ball in the first half. Palmer has to have his first turnover free game too.

  3. By Scott H on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    Straight up, I hate the Seahawks and that 58-0 beat down last year was MAYBE the lowest point I can remember in more years than I care to remember. And, unfortuantely, when you’re a Cardinals fan, well…there are a lot of low points. But enough about that.

    The Seahawks can be beaten when they are away from home, period. So, I am hoping for the best game the Cardinals have played this year. I’m hoping they keep the turnovers to a minumum and I hope the defense can cock back its collective fist and knock this team on its collective ass!

    C’mon, fellas, bring this one home.

    At the very least, the Seahawks do not have anything resembling a credible TE who can who can burn them the way other TE’s. If it happens THIS week…I’m gonna freak.

    Keep Wilson behind the line of scrimmage AND in the pocket…win the TO battle…stay in the game early so you can keep running the ball all the way through…and get a TD from either the D OR special teams. If you can do all of that and the Seahawks still win the game, then hats off to them. JUST GIVE YOURSELF A CHANCE TO WIN! They’re already a better team, so don’t make it easy for them. Make this a game they’re gonna feel for the next few days!

  4. By Patrick Eagan on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    go cardinals. i am nervous. but i won’t stop believing

  5. By Safety Guy on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    Darren
    What’s the skinny on Lynch?

    Saw reports DNP, is he in or out?

  6. By Patrick Hoog aka Don't Take Losses on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    “it doesn’t mean it isn’t remembered this week at all by the Cards still left”… Cardinal fans remember. if the new guys don’t know about that ass whipping, damn sure hope they’ve been shown the film. This is time to pay them back… will be screaming my guts out tomorrow night. Git er done, Cards. Payback. Lets kick their asses.

  7. By Tim Bork on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    Let me just preface my two cents with this: I don’t think the Seahawks are a joke…

    To be honest, the Cards are not big underdogs in this one, in fact I think it’s even. For one, look at who the Hawks have played… apart from the Niners(who they beat at home) and the Panthers(who the cardinals also beat) the only quality team is Indy, whom they lost to. They barely held on to beat Tenn. at home and their offensive attack is nothing the Cards can’t deal with. Lynch will get his yards but he wont be eating skittles all day. I think Wilson is smart but due for a turnover especially facing the Cards tenacious D. This is going to be a low scoring game, a battle of kickers, and the question of who turns the ball over. The biggest problem is that Palmers miscues and BAD throws haven’t shown signs of slowing down. On top of that, the Seahawks D is elite.

    With all that said I predict a Cards win. 13-10

    Rise up Red Sea

  8. By jasonc on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    Ok, so I’ve caught up by watching all of the games on NFL Rewind and I have to say that I understand more clearly the frustration with Carson, but I’m also just as sure that we are a good team and that Carson is the QB that can win games for us. The funny part about Carson is that two of his best games were against the Rams and the 49er’s, which we lost, and he was terrible against Carolina and Tampa Bay in games that we won. His 5 worst interceptions were opening day to Trumaine Johnson, forcing the ball to Larry Fitzgerald and Mitchell picks him in Carolina followed by the Kuechly int and finally the two picks in San Fran. Those were interceptions that could be solely placed on Carson Palmer and honestly none of them played into us winning those games. Unless you want to go complete butterfly effect….which I don’t. In St Louis we had a chance on 3 & 2 to drive for the winning score, we won the Carolina game and in San Fran we were driving for the go ahead score until the Fitzgerald fumble plus, we were never “out” of that game despite the INT’s.

    Other things I noticed: Andre Ellington is AMAZING, although I don’t agree with the people who claim Mendenhall is garbage. Ellington’s success as a change of pace back is helped by the tough inside running of Mendenhall. As long as he gets 20 touches a game he doesn’t have to be the ‘starting’ running back. John the Draft guy owes an apology to Darnell Dockett, he is having a really good year and flashes in every game…plus, he has more sacks than JJ Watt and he’s tied with Geno Atkins (sorry I couldn’t resist). Tyrann is playing well and it doesn’t need to be mentioned, but Tony Jefferson has looked good when he gets playing time. Dansby was playing well before Washington got back, but he has been LIGHTS OUT playing with Washington, the last two games he has been everywhere. It’s funny that i’ve seen some posts declaring that our pass protection is good so Carson has no excuses to force the ball…we have seen such horrendous pass blocking the past few years that we actually think when our QB doesn’t get hit after 2 seconds that our pass blocking is good. It is better, but we aren’t there yet.

    I hope people can appreciate that we’re 3-3 and we have been in every game this year (the Saints game was 17-7 after the 3rd quarter) even with all of the offensive miscues and turnovers we have been in positions to win. If we can even get respectable on 3rd down conversions and protect the ball better we’re going to make noise this year.

  9. By Darren Urban on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    Safety –

    RE: Lynch

    Lynch is playing.

  10. By LG on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    We only lose to teams with a allstar TE. they don’t have one we got this game just watch. last time i said we was going to win we won against tampa bay. now i’m saying it again 4 and 3 hear we come BIRDGANG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. By John The Draft Guy on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    jasonc,

    I have eaten my words and did say Dockett has responded well this year after a slow start. I hope he continues to prove me wrong and has a huge season.

    Something tells me Darnell doesnt care what I say, so I dont think I will throw out an apology to him.

    I still believe a contract restructuring must be done with him at the end of the year.

    I agree with your other points also.

  12. By ored on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    just thinking about our o-line next year brings a sense of peace,lol,with cooper back and the newbies with a year under their belt,could be a strength.i just know we’re gonna get a stud TE,anything to draw the offense together,size,speed,something to get a mismatch to loosen things up so we play fluidly and together.once they get in synch and see how good they can be,looking forward to tomorrow,then a well deserved break and a fresh 2nd half,really looking for much improvement after the break.

  13. By Rich on Oct 16, 2013 | Reply

    I got a great feeling about this game. I trust Palmer to get this offense turned around this game. I love our ground game with mendenhall and Ellington but I would like to see Ellington start and for mendenhall to be the 3rd down back short yardage. Fitzgerald is gonna take that fumble from last week out on the Seahawks I feel sorry for them. Go cards !!!!

  14. By Cactus jeff on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    I think the biggest disappointment on offense is Housler. Just doesn’t have the “it” factor to get it done, Levi-ish. Another player going down the road of Levi Brown is Michael Floyd. He has no burst after catching the ball, no anger when running. Wake up and play some football!

    DEfense will keep improving playing 4-3 with Abraham, DD, CC and Shaughnessy. Minter is too small, tackling window too small. Hopefully Keim isnt stubborn, learns from mistake, and signs Dansby ASAP.

  15. By wnycardfan on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    here’s my two cdnts.
    Its winnable for sure. BUT Cards usually play poorly on short rest etc (at least historically). SH Def is #2, and our offesnse is #26 in the league……oh boy!
    BA just said the timing is GONE as of now,. WITH timing we still had 11 INT’s……….oh boy.
    Now, seahawks passing game isn’t that good this year, so that’s a plus for us.
    The only way we win, is no turnovers. IF we turnover, we are sunk. Well, DEF has to be ready to play (rested) or else we’ll get stomped on.
    SO, I hate to say it, but I expect (I don’t want it) a seahawk win, but relatively low score like 14 – 6

  16. By Kevin S Mesa on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    I do understand Arians’ thinking in terms of Ellington potentially only being effective in limited duty. We had LSH and I think he was a weapon you had to use similarly — a few rushes here, a few short passes that he’d scamper with for big yards there — but not an every-down back.

    That said, I also have yet to see Ellington reach the point of ineffectiveness, so I say, keep increasing his touches until it isn’t working as well. Let’s not build an artificial ceiling on him by saying, oh, he’s only effective with 10 or so touches a game. He’s been one of our biggest weapons.

  17. By clssylssy on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    Some time ago I remember BA saying that”you win your homes games and steal a few on the road”. Pretty good and simple formula that to date puts us on track; we’ve won all of our home games and got a win from Tampa on the road, which we barely were able to “steal” and probably should have been arrested for! Now, back to the business at hand, winning at home against the Seahawks. There are teams on our schedule I don’t expect to beat on the road…the Seahawks, 49ers,Saints, Titans, possibly Eagles…but to split the games with teams in our division is VERY DOABLE; we should focus on those and not be wallowing in a loss to the 9ers that was foreseeable (if the truth be told), We played strong in the second half against a tough Panthers team and we held our own against the 9ers, and from those games we should have learned enough to beat the Seahawks here at Uof P Stadium. This is a short week granted, but,the Seahawks are overhyped and we have seen they are beatable when they are away from the security of Qwest Field. The Cards had the 9ers on the ropes last week but we didn’t know our enemy and didn’t prepare accordingly; we were expecting a one dimensional team throwing the ball and we got beat by a multiple front assault. We know that the Seahawks are another physical ground and pound team with a mobile and athletic QB; they are big but their mouths are bigger. I think that the Cards defense can contain Seattle’s offense which isn’t as good as SFs. Their defense will be worrying about not letting our receivers get the ball and they won’t be focusing as much on our run game. If Palmer can keep it together and complete short passes without interception (a la Drew Brees) we can move the chains, but we have to be able to score in the red zone! We have more talented weapons in our secondary and if we can sack Russell Wilson and get inside his head enough to disrupt his rhythm we can do to them what we were doing to Kaepernick. Our Special Teams has been the difference make in the past and it’s time to dust off Justin Bethel when they are in the end zone with their kicker. Historically, the Cards have played best when the underdogs and this Thursday night’s game is a good time to remind fans that the “Cardiac Cards” can’t be counted out. Hopefully, the Birdgang will be in full voice and up to breaking the decible scale in Phoenix; the Hags aren’t the only team in the West with a 12th man! TIME TO SHOW THE WORLD, THE SEAHAGS AREN’T THE ONLY BIRDTEAM IN THE WEST! LET’S PROTECT THE NEST ANOTHER WEEK!

  18. By jasonc on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    JTDG-

    Way to stay classy…it takes real character to admit when you’re wrong. Of course the season is still young and DD needs to keep playing at that level. So I was looking up DD’s contract and was amazed to see who the 4th highest paid player is for us…..Daryn Colledge @ 7.275 million! and he has 2 more years left @ that figure! If we cut him next year his dead money is 4.55 million so we’d save 2.725 million in cap space, goodbye Daryn Colledge.

  19. By louis on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    We will lose again sorry we don’t have the players or the coaching staff like Seattle we will lose Big.

  20. By louis on Oct 17, 2013 | Reply

    we need to fire the coaching staff and the G.M. and sell the whole team.

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