Friday before the Vikings

Posted by Darren Urban on November 5, 2010 – 4:13 pm

Steve Breaston isn’t going to brag. He doesn’t look all that comfortable when it’s suggested his presence “helps” Larry Fitzgerald. Fitz is a great player, Breaston knows, and that doesn’t go away whether Breaston is out of the lineup or not.

“That’s how everyone else sees it … I don’t know,” Breaston said. “I don’t know if I help him or not. I just do my part execute what the coaches give me. I hope I help everybody.”

Then again, it does make a difference with Breaston in there. “I don’t think teams were worried about some of those young players we had on the field,” coach Ken Whisenhunt said of the rookie wideouts playing when Breaston and Early Doucet were injured. Breaston does draw more attention. He does have the speed to stretch the field and open up holes for Fitz – and others – underneath.

Here’s another of my theories on Breaston and such a line of questioning (and Steve has never said this to me). Judging by his reaction, I think he’d like to start getting a little more respect for his game. He’s long been the overachiever, the guy who came out of nowhere to be so much more than a punt returner. He’s a very good receiver, a major playmaker, and I keep thinking there’s got to be a part of him who thinks, “You’re darn right I help Fitz because I will kill teams if they don’t pay attention to me.”

But hey, maybe I am over-analyzing.

— So the Cards head to Minnesota tomorrow with opportunity. Normally this trip to play the Vikings would seem to be an uphill climb, especially with the way the Cards have juggled QBs. But there is little question the Vikings are in a worse place as a team, after jettisoning Randy Moss and injury issues and stories all week about how coach Brad Childress is in trouble. If the Cards can handle Adrian Peterson – at least not let him run wild – and not turn it over, there is no reason to think the Cards can’t steal one. Here’s hoping they give themselves that chance.

— Peterson gets lost in the shuffle since everyone wants to talk about Brett Favre and, of late, Moss, but the Cards are paying attention. “He’s not a forgotten man with us,” Whisenhunt said. Peterson does lead the NFL with 776 yards rushing in seven games. “You never forget about a guy like that,” linebacker Joey Porter said. “Their offense still starts around him.”

— Tim Hightower has had his fumbling problems. So too has Peterson, although Peterson said this week the obvious: “Last year, yeah, I led the league in fumbles. It wasn’t because ‘Hey this guy is soft.’ It’s the way I play the game. I’m sure a coach would take me if I lead the league in fumbles five straight years.”

Peterson has none this year. And ESPN’s Chris Mortensen pointed out this great stat about Walter Payton (and not to compare Hightower, or even Peterson, with Payton): In Payton’s 14 seasons, he had at least five fumbles in all but one season. Payton had seasons of nine, 11, 13 and 16 fumbles. Astonishing.

— OK, so it’s in large part an indictment of the struggling offense at this point. But do you realize the Cardinals have more return touchdowns (KOR by The Hyphen, interception by DRC, four fumbles by Levi Brown, Kerry Rhodes (twice) and Gerald Hayes to total six) as they do rushing (five) or passing (five)? Those six return TDs, by the way, lead the NFL.

— When it was suggested the Cards might not have bothered to watch the Vikings games with Moss, since he is gone now, Whisenhunt said the Cards watched every game this season of the Vikings. Moss’ absence will definitely change how the Cards deal with them.

— I tried to ask about right tackle Brandon Keith’s play. It was actually praised this week by one-time offensive lineman Ben Muth on Football Outsiders. But Whisenhunt was having none of it. At least not yet.

“I’m not going to comment about that until after this game,” Whisenhunt said. “That’s a trap, because as soon as you ask me that and I say something … going into this environment … I’ll withhold comment.”

Fair enough. Noise has bothered Keith this season. The Cards need both he and Levi Brown to hold up on the outside.

— Cards quarterback Derek Anderson likes his humor. Talking about Favre this week, Anderson quipped, “Brett Favre is as old as my dad.” Anderson never necessarily idolized Favre, but liked the way he played because “he always played like a kid.” That’s what Anderson wants to be able to do. As for Favre’s crazy streak of consecutive games played, Anderson shook his head.

“It’s a testament to the lines he played behind because, whatever he’s done, 2,000 games he’s played straight, guys get beat up and a lot of times can’t even play 16 games,” Anderson said. (The streak, by the way, will be 293 once Favre takes a snap against the Cards).

— Don’t forget, with the rest of the country changing clocks in the wee hours of Sunday morning, the Vikings’ kickoff will be at 11 a.m. Arizona time and not 10 a.m. For me, it’s on to Minnesota. Guess we will hear that blasted horn soon enough.

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29 Responses to “Friday before the Vikings”

  1. By Nick Pepe on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Deep down I think Steve Breaston probably feels that way, but you will never hear him say that. Class act. We should be thankful for both he and Fitzgerald are the best both on and off the field. I got a good feeling about this week.

  2. By brad oneill on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    about Breaston you are right on Darren. the guy just makes plays day in and day out. Definitely a great receiver in his own right.

    how many picks have we given up that were aimed at Breaston? yup hes a good one.

  3. By ross on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Great work Darren.

  4. By Nikko on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    THEY MAKE EACH OTHER BETTER & DEFINITELY HELP EACH OTHER OUT!!!! Steve Breaston is one of the BEST, MOST UNDER RATED WR’S in the league & that’s why I will keep voting for him to be in the pro-bowl this year!! He’s deserve’s it to say the least!!! KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK STEVE!!!!

  5. By MikeFlorio on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Breaston stretchs the field, Fitz just might be that overrated though too. He needs a complintary reciever to change games. Fitz is no Andre Johnson or Jerry Rice or even a Micheal Irvin. He is just a product of a air raid type offense.

  6. By Darren Urban on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    MikeFlorio —

    RE: Fitz


  7. By Chuck 1 on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    The Cards are fortunate to have Fitz and Breaston.
    Unfortunately, they could also have Raymond Berry, Lynn Swan and John Stallworth and it wouldn’t make any difference since DA and Hall can’t get the ball to them.

  8. By Eric on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply


    Do you see Breaston signing an extension? I know a lot of it has to do with the CBA too. The guy is so humble.

  9. By Darren Urban on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Eric —

    RE: Breaston contract

    That is the plan.

  10. By Phoenixraven1 on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Show breaston the money$$$$$$$

  11. By cardsalltheway on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Cards coach said…“I don’t think teams were worried about some of those young players(Williams, Komar, Roberts) we had on the field,” coach Ken Whisenhunt said of the rookie wideouts playing when Breaston and Early Doucet were injured.”
    I wonder if the Cards coach ever thought other teams worried about his undrafted rookie(Max Hall) QB when he was on the field? And to think Max Hall was not on the field due to an injured player.

  12. By Dre on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Steven Breaston is to Fitz as Ron Harper was to Micheal Irvin and John Taylor was to Jerry Rice. He a great number 2 wr and can be a local star forever. Fitz and Boldin were like Lynn Swann and John Stallworth, two superstar on the same team.

    And for the game…they have to get after Favre. Beside last year Favre has own the cardinal defense. It is something he likes about the way we play…maybe its the fact he knows he can get the big play on us. I’m not excited about this game because the Vikes are real run stopper…with the William brothers in the middle is going to be a long day for the run game and with know what to expect with the passing game. Turnover either by fumble or interception has to be reduces and the only is to limit the attempts and know what are the strengths and weakness are of the QB.

  13. By Paul on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    I see where Chilly was almost fired by the Vikings owner last Monday. I bet he considered that they play the Cardinals this week and he thinks they can right the ship because hey “it’s the Cards”. In past years we were always the “medication” for teams teams to get well. I fear that reputation is creeping back. This game could be a tipping point for the season. I hope we are ready.A lot of the big players need to play big.

  14. By TW VIKE on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    Brett is going to light you up!!! AP is going to run you over and get close to a 1000 yds. Sydney is going to have 125yds & 2 TDs. Brad is going to pick his nose like usual. Vikes still win 38 -19

  15. By AndyStandsUp on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    You know, with the Vikings being in the same boat as the Cowboys, 49ers and Broncos, one last defeat could sail the ship for these guys.
    Card offense play mistake free, Card defense play opportunistic and easy Arizona wins.
    Breaston plays QB on Bradfork, Wells runs for 150 and Anderson plays MANAGEABLE offense. DRC avoids long plays, Porter has a sack or two and Wilson and Adams make key plays.
    Geez, it nice to dream.

  16. By DRC#1Fan on Nov 5, 2010 | Reply

    It’s time for the Cardinals to hit a hot streak. I belive in DA because I have to. Breaston has been our best playmanker and I think Whiz should put him into the punt return team to open another situation that he might be able to exploit for a big play. Fitz has been just as off as anyone. I have seen him running head long down the field when he should be turned for a hot read. I hope he buckles down and plays to help our QB’s rather than worries about what they are doing wrong. The Cardinals are a great team. I hope they realize it. And I hope Will Davis tears it the f up!!!!

  17. By Eazy E on Nov 6, 2010 | Reply

    You’re an idiot. Fitz is the best wide receiver in the game. Andre as cold as he is has a good #2 in kevin walter, big guy at 6’3 220 very good hands good speed strong route runner wth are you talking about? Everybody would just double or triple Fitz every snap like they were doing without breaston or boldin and with the rookies in

  18. By Gang6230 on Nov 6, 2010 | Reply

    Fitz is the best in the league the only reason the numbers r down is the qb issues. But every team always double on him so where ever that guy got his info. Is wrong he’s an idiot. Saying that Fitz is overrated Play hard. Go Cards

  19. By Scott H on Nov 6, 2010 | Reply

    Doesn’t matter what or how many “issues” the Vikings are having right now. The Cardinals’ biggest obstacle for most of the year has been THEMSELVES! If they can give themselves a chance, they can be very competitive anywhere. If they continue to turn the ball over 4-5 times per game, anyone they play – doesn’t matter who – will take advantage of it and win the game. The Cardinals have to overcome themselves before they can beat the Vikings.

  20. By Kevin on Nov 6, 2010 | Reply

    Are you going to post the newest Wired to the site?

  21. By TW VIKE on Nov 6, 2010 | Reply

    You guys noway can beat the Vikes. We win 38-19.

  22. By Michelle on Nov 6, 2010 | Reply

    LETS GO CARDS!!!!!!

  23. By alan on Nov 7, 2010 | Reply

    correct me if im wrong but the last time we played the vikings we held A.P. to 15 total yards for .02 yards per carry i believe the cards defense is much better now i perdict bret goes out in first quarter do to a lethal blitz by A-DUB and our defense holds A.P to 60 yards total cards win 38-14 GO RED

  24. By John on Nov 7, 2010 | Reply

    DA gets one more chance to break or not break our hearts…..Go get’em DA! If you fail today you should be benched for the season!

  25. By John on Nov 7, 2010 | Reply

    Who let TW Vike in here? Darren, shame on you!

  26. By TBru on Nov 7, 2010 | Reply

    Looks like we are playing team train wreck this week. I hope we do to them, what Atlanta and San Diego did to us this year. Off to the bar, enjoy the game.

  27. By Chuck 1 on Nov 7, 2010 | Reply


    Out of curiosity, do you allow fans of other teams to post comments on your site as long as they’re not profane or ……………?

  28. By Darren Urban on Nov 7, 2010 | Reply

    Chuck 1 —

    RE: Other fans

    As you can see, I do allow such things. But there are times I dump attempted comments.

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