Friday before the Jets

Posted by Darren Urban on November 30, 2012 – 3:40 pm

Dan Williams likes to joke with defensive line coach Ron Aiken from time to time, letting Aiken know “I am always ready to rush the passer if they need me.” The big nose tackle isn’t going to get that chance often, not playing in obvious passing situations. The folks at noted the big nose tackle has been playing well and that it’s unfortunate he doesn’t get to play more because of the current state of the game.

Williams shrugs his shoulders. “I don’t know if I am a generation too late,” Williams said. “That’s what they brought me in here to do, to stop the run. When teams go to the extra receivers, they bring the extra DB in.”

That’s when Williams comes out. He sees himself as capable if needed in those spots. He sees nose tackles like New England’s Vince Wilfork and Green Bay’s B.J. Raji in such situations and believes he is as talented. He’s a long way from the weight-issue storyline that dominated his career – “Just for the record, I only missed weight one time and I think it was blown out of proportion,” he said – and, as noted, his play has been solid.

“If they try to throw the ball when we are in base, I am going to try to take advantage of that,” Williams said.

The Cardinals haven’t stopped the run as effectively as they have liked this season, but some of that has to do with the pass-defense-first packages they have used. This week, against the struggling Jets, the run would seem to be New York’s weapon of choice. Williams will be needed.

As for some other New York-is-next topics:

— Defensive coordinator Ray Horton was plain in his desire to get after Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez. “We sacked (Aaron Rodgers) on the first play, and I think he had one of his worst statistical games,” Horton said. “We hit Matt Ryan on the first third down and he didn’t have a very good game. It’s something we do anyway … when you hit the quarterback early, it gets in their mind a little bit.”

— It’s no surprise the Jets are struggling, but offensive line coach Dave DeGuglielmo was not happy during a rare press conference this week, including making the point he was being forced to use Vlad Ducasse every third series at left guard instead of the preferred Matt Slauson. (Ducasse, you may remember, has been a bust of a second-round pick best known for the man blocking O’Brien Schofield in the Senior Bowl practice in which Schofield blew out his knee.)

Horton noticed. “I saw their offensive line coach complaining a little bit about who makes the decision on who plays,” Horton said. “We hope there is a little confusion, disarray, uncertainty there we can take advantage of.”

— Rookie quarterback Ryan Lindley was matter-of-fact talking about his four-interception starting debut last week. He wasn’t about to declare it a disaster.

“This is a results-driven game,” Lindley said. “We lost the game, I gave up 14 points myself. So it wasn’t a good game. But there were things I can look at, move forward from, and gain confidence from to take into this week.”

Lindley can make up a lot of ground if he can respond well, on the road, against the aggressive Jets. Whether he can actually pull that off, with a new starting center in Rich Ohrnberger on top of it, remains a big question mark.

— The last time the Cardinals took on a Rex Ryan defense, coach Ken Whisenhunt unveiled the no-huddle offense. That was in Baltimore in 2007, when the Cards got way behind and starting QB Matt Leinart looked very bad. Kurt Warner came in and lit up the Ravens, who were still able to pull off a win at the end.

This is an entirely different situation, starting with the reality that Kurt Warner isn’t walking through that door. As for the chance the Cards could use the no-huddle, Whisenhunt didn’t exactly sound optimistic.

“Is it something you could do? Yes,” Whisenhunt said. “Is it something you can do with a rookie quarterback? Depends on the rookie. He’s done it, worked on it in practice. It could be part of the gameplan.”

— Tight end Todd Heap wasn’t active last week, Whiz said, because he didn’t get enough reps in practice and “you have to get ready to play and that’s part of it.” Heap did practice full all last week, however, just like this week. If I had to guess, I’d think Heap plays this week, but you never know. He was officially moved down the depth chart this week. Jeff King was already ahead of him, but Rob Housler now is too.

— Some TV shows this weekend. On this week’s “Season In Focus” Saturday morning at 7 a.m. on ABC-15, cornerback Michael Adams is featured on the “Wired” segment, and there is a “Zoom” episode on running back LaRod Stephens-Howling – including The Hyphen listening to his emotional draft-day phone interview for the first time. On “Flight Plan” Saturday night at midnight on Ch. 12 NBC, Whisenhunt breaks down some video of Lindley’s first start and he and Ron Wolfley preview the Jets game.

— Horton was asked if cornerback Patrick Peterson had reached the level of Jets corners Darrelle Revis (who is out for the season) and Antonio Cromartie.

“Patrick is past one of them already,” Horton said, referring to Cromartie. “He is approaching Revis with everything he does on and off the field.”

— Rams defensive end Chris Long was fined $15,750 for hitting Lindley in the head during last weekend’s game. Rams linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar was not fined for his hit on Cardinals receiver LaRon Byrd.

— Punter Dave Zastudil has 27 punts inside the 20 this season. Only Kansas City’s Dustin Colquitt (31) has more.

— One more sack by Daryl Washington and he ties the team record of 10 by a linebacker, set first by Ken Harvey. Maybe he finds Sanchez twice on Sunday.


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Blog | 33 Comments »

33 Responses to “Friday before the Jets”

  1. By Dynosoar on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    Washington finding Sanchez twice… Maybe he does.

  2. By Mark on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    I Expect 4 or 5 Sack’s By The Card’s D.Go Cardinal’s!!!!

  3. By cobra on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    I still don’t think Horton is ready to be a Head Coach. Horton likes to talk about himself too much. Can’t blame him with what the D has done, yet, still not there. If we were shutting teams out, well maybe. You have to remember, there are other sides to the game, like Offense and Special teams. I bet Whiz hasn’t been happy with him being so arrogant at times! All we need now is another Singletary with all of the talent and no clue what to do with it!

  4. By Dynosoar on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    I’m looking forward to this game. If Lindley can throw better than 60% completion, we should win this game. With the way the O-Line has begun protecting the QB, whoever he is, I have hope for Lindley. However, i’m aware of one more injury, Sendlein will be a huge loss.

    We have just been devastated with injuries this season.

    Let’s go, 5-7 on our way to 9-7 and a wildcard spot. (I don’t see 8-8 doing it, but 9-7…)

  5. By Dynosoar on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    Cobra, I agree. Whizenhunt is our coach and has a long term plan that I believe will create an actual dynasty.

    Ray Horton has declared at least once that his goal is to win a Super Bowl as a DC before he becomes a head coach. Does he turn down an offer? I don’t know, but he studied a lot of years under a Master and I don’t see him pursuing a Head Coaching position until he accomplishes his goals and learns what he can from Whizenhunt.

    He’ll move onward and upward, but I’m with you (and we could both be wrong) I don’t see him moving for at least another year. Which means a Championship this season or next.

  6. By Kevin S on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    Gonna head up to Vegas and plunk some money on the Cards. Have a good feeling about this game… but I think I’ll play it safe and take the 4 1/2 points instead of the money line, just so I’ll be somewhat consoled in the event of a squeaker loss.

    We definitely have our issues but I can’t see us getting blown out. We do, however, need Beanie (or LSH or Powell if Beanie can’t go) to get us some yards and make Lindley’s life easier. Jets have allowed over 142 rush yards per game… let’s get somewhere in that ballpark.

  7. By Scott H on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    Todd Heap…yet another of the many people we just need to move on from. And exactly the type of mind-set during FA that we need to move on from as well. Enough with bargain basement / injury-plagued vets and ex-Steelers. Where has THAT gotten us??? We are SOOOOO in need of a new direction.

  8. By Kevin S on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    cobra —

    I have no idea if he is ready to be a HC, but I don’t think you make a guy the HC just so you don’t lose him as the DC, which seems to be the argument many fans are making — “we have to fire Whiz and promote Horton so we don’t lose Horton.” You only make him the HC if you think, objectively, he deserves the job over all other candidates (and that assumes you’re even looking for a new HC). Assuming we were looking for a HC, the way I’d be analyzing the issue is, if Ray Horton were someone else’s DC and his defense was performing at an equivalent level to the Cardinals with comparable talent, would I consider bringing him over as a possible HC? Assuming the answer is yes (and I believe it would be; he’s interviewed for other HC positions previously), then sure, you interview him, see what his overall philosophy is, what his plan for the offense would be, etc. But I don’t hear anyone in, say, baseball say that so-and-so needs to be elevated from pitching coach to manager so we don’t lose them. Losing Horton would be a negative for the Cardinals, but that doesn’t mean you automatically promote him, just as you would never say that just because losing a particular player would hurt the team, that automatically means you pay him whatever salary he is demanding to stay.

  9. By cardsalltheway on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    “Patrick is past one of them already,” Horton said, referring to Cromartie.”

    Really, based on what?

  10. By Chuck 1 on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    I agree, cobra.

    After another year or two, Horton MIGHT be ready.

  11. By johnnybluenose on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    cobra. no need to worry about horton being our head coach next year. whiz will play out the string, not because he’s a good coach but because bidwill won’t pay two salaries for a head coach. and it won’t really matter who our coach is next year. we just aren’t good enough. and about dan williams. how many snaps does he average per game? what a waste of a second round draft pick.

  12. By Campbells on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    Am I the only one that thinks Housler runs like a slug? It’s like watching slow-motion. Looks undersized, so how will he fair against NY? Beanie limited all week. He’ll probably be good for 2-3 series. That leaves LSH. Good luck. Powell would serve us better, if he’s not mentally overwhelmed. If Early plays (any position), good luck! If each receiver drops at least 1-crucial pass, good luck! Offensive holding when we have momentum = good luck! Our QB has enough confidence to fuel both teams, which must translate into some sort of statistical advantage for us. Lest we forget, Jets are seeking a playoff berth; we’ve already conceded that this season is over.

  13. By dan on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    I think it pathetic that Rob Housler has yet to catch a TD pass. Geez……….maybe we should throw to the TE when we get in the redzone. What a bunch of idiots.

  14. By dan on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    And what ever happened to putting Patrick Peterson on offense every once in a while? At least as a decoy, that would put so much pressure on a defense. These coaches are clueless.

  15. By phillycards on Nov 30, 2012 | Reply

    Whiz brought this on himself. But if the game changed why didn’t we trade a DT for a olineman instead of having too many?

    We need reliable tightends and then we wouldn’t need so many of them either. A good system should attract free agents and create depth. A decent player knows people get hurt.

    Whiz has nothing left.I want to see some urgency from the bidwills about this.

  16. By cardsalltheway on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    The Cardinals “Mini Helmet” would be a great GAG gift stocking stuffer and good for my junk drawer if I were a kid today. As for the $100 non-refundable per seat waiting list for 2013 season tickets, good luck with that. Perhaps they should refund the $100 next year?

    Empty seats: I saw many of them on the 2nd level at the 50 yard line or say between the 20 yard lines during the Rams game. Are those largely corporate seats or what, the rich buy season tickets for employees, friends, clients, but they don’t want to go to games? The TV camera shot was taken early in the 2nd quarter as I remember, I’d say the many empty seats equated to about 80% empty.

  17. By Rugbymuffin on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    Hi Darren,

    Is there any way the out of town fan can see:

    “Some TV shows this weekend. On this week’s “Season In Focus” Saturday morning at 7 a.m. on ABC-15, cornerback Michael Adams is featured on the “Wired” segment, and there is a “Zoom” episode on running back LaRod Stephens-Howling – including The Hyphen listening to his emotional draft-day phone interview for the first time. On “Flight Plan” Saturday night at midnight on Ch. 12 NBC, Whisenhunt breaks down some video of Lindley’s first start and he and Ron Wolfley preview the Jets game.”

    Ron Wolfley has mentioned these shows a couple times, and it is weird that there is no website to go see these shows at.

  18. By Darren Urban on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    Rugby —

    RE: shows

    We post many of the segments on the site. But we cannot post entire shows based on contractual obligations.

  19. By Chuck 1 on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    I’ve collected some comments from fans over the last several blogs.
    Quite revealing about the discontent re: Graves, Keim, Whiz and the other coaches.
    Here are just a few:

    By rufus on Nov 25, 2012 | Reply
    Yes, I will rehash that Whisenhunt and Graves have to go. Until it happens, the fans should speak out. No need to put up with another losing season in 2013.

    By JC_AZ on Nov 25, 2012 | Reply
    I have had season tickets for 20 years and the last 2 games were the first and only games I have walked out in the 4Q…it is getting worse to watch all the time, and for the first time I am wondering if the $3k spent every year is worth my time and investment…pathetic

    By Patches O’Houlihan on Nov 25, 2012 | Reply
    I’ve been a season ticket holder since 1996. If Graves is on the payroll after the season ends I won’t be back. This is as bad as it ever was in the Sun Devil Stadium days, the only difference being I pay more than twice as much for my tickets as I did then. Plus an hour drive to Jiffy Pop Stadium. Mikey said the new stadium would make it all different, well Mikey let me spread my self-made private sector experience really thick: It’s same old Cardinals. Graves is same old Cardinals. See where I’m going with this? I’m not paying for it anymore. Now get your big boy pants on, hire a real football guy, let him do his thing and you shut up and sign checks. If any trust funds have to wait to get funded while Whis, his fraud BFF Grimm, Miller, Graves, whoever cash their buyout checks, tough.

    My comment: As I’ve written several times recently, until fans express their dissatisfaction by not renewing their season tickets or not buying single game tickets, they are going to continue to watch the same inferior product. Maybe bags over the heads would also be a good idea ala the “Aints”.

  20. By Brazilian Fan on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    I guess I know the answer is no, but, doesn’t hurt to ask. Darren, will there be any story about Michael Bidwill’s visit here to São Paulo, Brazil? do you know if it was Cardinals-related? very exciting… congrats on the work!

  21. By Darren Urban on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    Brazilian —

    RE: Bidwill trip

    To be honest, I didn’t even know about it.

  22. By johnnybluenose on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    Dynosoar. it’s way past time to CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM.

  23. By Andy Kw on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    If Ryan Lindley struggles, will John Skelton be put back into the lineup?

  24. By Nick Pepe on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    I am looking forward to seeing MU first game since 10/29/09. Looking forward to meeting some fellow birdgang faithfuls from both out west and here int east. And most importantly, looking forward to the streak ending. I am ready for some football.

    We will be in lot B by 0930 hrs….. Should be easy spot, won’t be many of us in red!

    Nick Pepe
    Lifetime Member

  25. By Supercardinals100 on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    Honestly I’m only watching games now to hopefully see fitz make some plays and also floyd and see the offense make real progress connecting with our receivers..hopefully next year we can draft Landry jones in the 3rd or second round and maybe sneak up on mantei teo to pair him up next to Daryl Washington that would be awesome !..but c’mon cards get the ball to fitz

  26. By Scott H on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    Dan –

    Excellent point about the TE position in general because the Cardinals are truly the team where TE’s come to disappear.

    This year the O-line situation has become so bad because of the injuries that You know the TE’s are being used more for blocking than anything else. But, really, even if that were not the case, do you think it would be any different? I don’t. This team has not had a relevant TE for so long, I can’t even tell ya who the last one was.

  27. By MikeinMesa on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    I now questions Hortons sanity. He must be drinking the same koolaid as Whis. Peterson hasn’t shown anything close to shutdown corner capabilities. Looks like the cards are throwing in the towel to me. Skelton is their best bet to win and he’s sitting on the bench. Way to go Whisenhunt.

  28. By Scott H on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    This may not be the mindset most people would favor right now, but…here goes – I honestly want the Cards to lose every game remaining on the schedule and finish at 4-12.

    First, 12 straight losses ought to be enough to get any coach fired, so it accomplishes that right off the bat. This regime has failed post-Warner and appears capable of doing no better than 8-8 without a QB like Warner to carry the team on the field. It’s time to move on. Seen enough.

    Second, looking at the records among the worst teams in the laegue right now – and, yes, we ARE one of them – it appears that 4-12 could possible land the Cardinals as high as the 3rd overall pick in the draft. Or, maybe the 4th. But at 4-12, we CAN get up there. Some other teams ( Eagles, Browns ) need to help us out by winning a few, but it’s possible.

    But what works in my favor ( and that of anyone else who subscribes to this mindset ) is that the Cardinals do not appear to have another win in them this year. The Jets game makes me nervous because the Jets are actually BAD enough to lose that one completely on their own. I just have to hope the Cardinals track record of playing on the east coast holds up. We lose that one, we should be home free

    NO WAY we are winning in either Seattle or San Fran. No way we’re beating the Bears, no matter where we play them. And even though the Lions are not quite what they were supposed to be, they certainly have enough offense to put a game out of reach against a team that can’t get out of its own way ( especially if we fall behind early and the run game goes out the window, like it did last week against the Rams ).

    the present does not matter. This season is over. Period. But we CAN begin to lay the groundwork for moving forward in the future by losing these games that mean absolutely nothing. No, I don’t expect anyone to come out and say that is the goal. Nobody can dare admit that. But for a team that can only look to the future at this point, it IS the best course of action. Fortunately, the schedule is favorable.

  29. By Campbells on Dec 1, 2012 | Reply

    We’ll all feel different about this tomorrow. After hot-shot Lindley throws 50 passes (with 6-picks), and struts off the field feeling “Confident,” those 2013 season tix will be selling like hot-cakes. Better to be confident, than to be a winner.
    Whiz definitely has another scape-goat. Looking like player injuries is the smoke-screen he needs to keep his job. Too bad for us.
    We’ll continue to play Steeler football with no line, and pint-sized running backs. Continue to run (nowhere) on first down, pass for three yards on second, and get blown-up by the blitz on third and long. Recipe for long-term success.
    As for Beanie, I’m sure he’ll have a couple (literally) of decent series before his weekly disappearing act.
    All things considered, I’m feeling pretty positive about tomorrow. : )

  30. By cardsalltheway on Dec 2, 2012 | Reply

    The Desperation Bowl…

    Brazilian Fan,
    “will there be any story about Michael Bidwill’s visit here to São Paulo, Brazil? do you know if it was Cardinals-related?”

    He probably went there for fun and to escape the dread of a 7 game losing streak/two months and counting without a victory. If we have to suffer through a similar season with Ken W. next year I’d guess Michael Bidwill will hop on his jet to make a return visit. I can’t remember who it was but some female celebrity said the place(Brazil) just “exudes se6 the minute you get off the plane.” I’m not sure exactly what she meant but is it true? It can’t be the sun(plentiful in Az) but maybe it’s the beaches or there’s always The Vaughn Center. Thanks for keeping tabs on him for us.

    Jets – 24
    Cardinals – 10

  31. By johnnybluenose on Dec 2, 2012 | Reply

    Nick Pepe. i live in nova scotia and i was looking forward to this season. i thought we would do well and i thought that the game against the jets would be exciting and meaningful. i bought 4 tickets before the season even began. i gave the tickets away and i doubt i will even watch the game if it is televised. for your sake i hope we win but if we don’t i hope you have a good time at the game regardless. as bad as the jets are i think we could win, something like 16-13.

  1. 2 Trackback(s)

  2. Dec 1, 2012: Getting to know Cornwall DB Anthony Vega - Darrelle Revis Headlines | Sports Stumble - trending sports news at your fingertipsSports Stumble – trending sports news at your fingertips
  3. Dec 2, 2012: Word From the Birds Blog | Jets aftermath

Post a Comment

%d bloggers like this: