Here come the points

Posted by Darren Urban on November 26, 2013 – 12:42 pm

It only makes sense, as the offense rounds to form, that the points are starting to come for the Cardinals. At this point, the Cards have 254 points scored this season after 11 games. All of last season, the Cardinals scored 250. (And a h/t to Kent Somers for pointing it out.) But the points are coming in many ways that are new. The mere fact that the Cardinals have scored at least 20 points in seven straight games is nice, since last year, the Cardinals reached 20 points exactly once in their final 12 games of the season.

As was mentioned Sunday, the 40 points against the Colts was the most the Cards had scored since beating Denver, 43-13 — I like to refer to it as Jay Feely’s Fantastic Show — in December of 2010. It was also the fourth straight game the Cardinals scored at least 25 points. The last time that happened? Back in Weeks 3 through 6 of 1988, the Cards’ inaugural season in Arizona, when Neil Lomax and company scored at least 30 in beating the Bucs, Redskins, Rams and Steelers.

It isn’t as if the Cards are scorching the scoreboard. They are on pace for a respectable 369 points, although that falls short of the 400-plus points the Cardinals scored in 2007 and 2008. They are still only 18th in the league in points. But after last year, when they were next-to-last in points (to the Chiefs), the trend is encouraging. And pointed up.

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25 Responses to “Here come the points”

  1. By SteveG on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    My only complaint on the way to those lovely points were the seemingly disruptive gimmick plays.

    We (I was in the trenches, I swear) were whooping Indy both sides of the ball, years and first downs were being piled up and then on two occasions as I recall, we went “off script” and used PP to (to my eye) disrupt a natural rhythm that had been established.

    I get them in a tight game or a game that needs a jumpstart but in a smooth display of offense? Didn’t seem to really help….

  2. By Big Ken on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    I’m not saying any team should run up the score for no reason, but it looks like San Francisco would have scored a few more points in Monday nights game considering who they are playing.

  3. By Dynosoar on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    Chuck 1,

    Your comments are well thought out. I know I’ve talked of a dynasty being built for several years; perhaps a definition would be appropriate so ya’ll can understand why I say this. Ya’ll may agree or not, but if you understand my thoughts you can better respond (and if I’m wrong you’ll know where to correct me, if I’m right you’ll know where.)

    When I look at current NFL dynasties, the Patriots and the Colts stand out. When I was a kid, they were the bottom feeders (as were the Saints and Cardinals). What changed?

    1. An elite quarterback
    2. Going to the playoffs multiple times
    3. Going to the Super Bowl
    4. Establishing a culture that playing is not good enough, we’re playing to win
    5. Continually improving
    6. A dedicated leadership with the vision to actually have a dynasty

    We’ve done this and we did it under Coach Whizenhunt. We then lost our elite quarterback and haven’t made the playoffs since, but the foundation for a dynasty was established. We have all the ingredients for a winning culture. Whizenhunt had a plan that hinged on the O-line and an elite quarterback and it didn’t work because of a failure to execute. As others have said, may be more Graves, I don’t know.

    His coaching took us from a blowout loss at the Patriots hands to a Super Bowl.
    Now I’m not here to say we should have Whizenhunt back, because I’ve moved on and I believe our team is better for it. I do believe he put the foundation in place for a dynasty in the desert.

    I also firmly believe that Bidwill, Keim and Arians (and a whole host of other coaches, staff, players and fans) have done what it takes to build on that foundation. Coach Arians has picked up where Whiz left off and taken us further. Keim has so far improved on what I saw Graves do that I’m amazed. Bidwill wants to win and has again given us the pieces he can provide. We’re in the hunt and the fans I have contact with can feel it. We’re hungry.

    1. Elite QB’s throw with better than 60% accuracy and look for 1st down and touchdown throws on third down. Is Palmer elite, he does meet these criteria.
    2. Remains to be seen, but I believe we all feel confident this is possible
    3. Same as 2
    4. The feel of the comments here makes a statement this is happening again
    5. We are continuously improving
    6. We have this leadership

    I believe a dynasty was begun around 2008 and within the next few years will be established. We’re no longer here to stay, we’re here to win and win a lot. I trust Bidwill, Keim and Arians to bring this vision to reality.

  4. By John The Draft Guy on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    Alright Darren,
    I got some stats for you.

    Yes in 2008 the cards scored 427 points far more than the 369 points the cards are projected to have.

    But the 2008 card defense gave up 426 points, making it a plus one, thus the 9-7 record.

    The 2013 cards defense has given up 223 right now. With the 254 scored, that is a plus 31 points. That is good enough for 9th in the NFL on point differential .

    Projecting it out (tough to do, but..) If we score 369 points and after 11 games we given up 223 divided by 11 is around 20 pts per game projected out 16 games = 324 points against. Which is a 45 point difference vs the 1 pt difference in 2008.

    Bottom line, yes we scored more in 2008, but we had to. Our defense couldn’t stop anyone. In 2013 we are running the ball more ( about 15 yards a game more ) and playing far better defense. I like this version of the cards and think it is better.

    Looking at the Warner teams, we would need to score 40 pts to have a chance against this eagle team. But with this defense, maybe 25 pts is good enough.

  5. By Brian on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    hope palmer keeps up the good work. and if he does were making the playoffs.

  6. By tyman on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    Looks like the O has caught up to the D

  7. By jstn on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    In 5 Games we will see a 11-5 record that I hope will make it to the playoffs, fingers crossed…..

  8. By Dynosoar on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply


    which game do you see us losing? I’m only worried about Seattle in Seattle. Although the Rams are looking pretty good right now.

    This said, I believe we can win any and all of the games we have left. Now that would be a statement. Will we, I’m really looking forward to watching and finding out.

  9. By Chuck 1 on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    Call me crazy, but IF (and it’s a BIG IF), the Cards make the playoffs (AND win at least one playoff game), I wouldn’t be surprised if BA wins back-to-back Coach of the Year Awards unless a team surprises everyone and wins the SB e.g. the Panthers.

  10. By Peter in Canada on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply


    I agree with your post with one exception. The dynasty foundation you say was built under Whiz and Graves was somewhat shaky. There were a number of good players alright but they neglected the most important position QB. Also it was mentioned during Sunday’s game that there are 27 players currently on the Cards who weren’t there in 2012. That seems like a lot of changes to a 53 man roster. I blame Graves rather than Whiz for the mess that was 2010 and 2012 on a previous blog on the assumption that a coach can only work with what the GM gives him. Most of the posters vehemently disagreed with me.

  11. By beardinals on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    “By SteveG on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply
    My only complaint on the way to those lovely points were the seemingly disruptive gimmick plays.”
    Seems like they just wanted to get those plays on film to look at. they had a prime opportunity with a big lead at the time.

  12. By Scott H on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    Yes, nice to see the points coming in because I think we had a right to expect some high scoring games from a big-arm QB and a stable of playmakers at WR. I also figured the Cardinals might HAVE to score a lot of points in some games because they might be coming back from deficits in the 2nd half. BUT thanks to this defense, the offense hasn’t had to be a high-scoring unit to win most of the games they won. I love that.

    But all the same, I would love to see more games with the offense scoring into the 30’s. Let’s hit our stride at the perfect time.

    Damn…how much does that loss to the Rams on opening day hurt NOW??? Ugh.

    And might this be the year that Cardinal fans get to watch as other teams get into the playoffs with a record not as good as ours??? We haven’t known that feeling yet…the Cardinals are better than any of the teams in the NFC East OR North right now ( of course, with Aaron Rogers playing, that would NOT include the Packers ) and that is frustrating to know.

    Also, ONLY 5 TEAMS IN THE AFC WITH WINNING RECORDS!!! The Cardinals are a playoff team hands-down over there. Sigh…geography can be a cruel thing sometimes.

  13. By Scott H on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    And speaking of playoff scenarios…anyone else agree with my way of thinking that we should want the Seahawks to wrap up the top seed in the NFC West as soon as possible? That way, with nothing for them to play for when the Cardinals go up there for that game, perhaps they rest a bunch of players and play it like they really don’t care. That is CLEARLY the toughest game left on the schedule. UNLESS the Seahawks have nothing to play for.

    Stay with me, here…also, if the Seahawks beat the Saints this Monday night, then the Saints are suddenly gonna be a LOT more motivated to beat the Panthers TWICE over the next five weeks because they might HAVE TO beat them twice to take that division. I think all of this goes a long way toward paving the road for the Cardinals’ path to the playoffs.

    Can I get an Amen, brothers and sisters???

  14. By ored on Nov 26, 2013 | Reply

    i’ll take current coaching/management any day over previous…we finally have a qb after kw left,oline is being coached up with no upper tier talent yet,we have a run game,defense is lights out,and i trust keims talent evaluation skills much more.we also let boldin get away and just now look to be finding his replacement.we had down years because of poor planning and coaching,maybe not all on the head coach per se,but the oline stunk and the defense did’nt get better til horton got here,and the qb retired before he got maimed and we had nobody waiting in the was too much scrambling to make do instead of having a plan in place if needed.i still have nightmares of sending poor undersized max out there behind our oline, the way how many years did we complain of poor oline play…just now starting to get fixed.

    i think we are finally on the right path and being in the same division as rams,9ers,and seahawks will only help keep our focus…the day will come when we give back like we’ve had to take and no 12th man,loud stadium is gonna make a difference.

  15. By ored on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    btw i look forward to getting the best the hags have,what more can they do after the debacle last year,and if we can take that and come back stronger then each time we meet them,they will be the ones with doubts,cards flying higher…go rocky…woohoo.

  16. By johnnybluenose on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    @SteveG….i agree with you about the gimmick plays. i once had a coach whose philosophy was to only use gimmick plays in games that he did not expect to win. i remember whiz using gimmick plays successfully against atlanta and against philly on the way to the superbowl way back when. maybe BA just wanted to give philly something extra to think about and prepare for this week.

  17. By HunterSThompson on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    Scott H – I hear ya, and agree with all you said. Unless we expect the Cards to win out, they are going to need a bit of luck. 11-5 gets them in, but anything less is doubtful, based on my analysis in the previous blog post comments. One game at a time! Go Cards!

  18. By Marcelof on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    Scott H,

    That’s totally correct… furthermore Cards will get more chances even though they lose to Seattle, once Saints and Carolina will have to kill each other plus we cannot count on taking the crown of NFC West when the chances of Seahawks losing three games are from very low to none.

    I can’t picture a scenarium where Cards is not fighting for a spot only against Panthers and 49ers and hope NFC West puts on three teams on playoffs.

    Which team would we be facing now getting into playoffs as the last seed?

  19. By John The Draft Guy on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    Scott H,

    I think rivalries trump everything. The Saints will play hard either way, it is a division game. And if you think for one moment the seahawks are going to lay down so we can get in the playoffs, you are not being realistic. They have everything to play for. Knocking out a division rival is something I would play for.

    Yes, we all will be Saint fans against the panthers. those games will be great.
    And going to seattle to play, is as hard as it gets. You win those tough road games with defense. It will be a fun game.

    But lets just go beat the eagles and put the pressure on the niners and panthers.

  20. By Steve Santelli on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    What’s the deal with Fitz. I’m hearing he may not be back next year is this true?
    This comes from espn. It’s something a friend told me.I did not hear it myself.

  21. By Darren Urban on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    Steve —

    RE: Fitz

  22. By ryan on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    first of all- AZ needs to beat philly of course otherwise they move up one spot based on head to head. but if we’re tied with carolina or detroit for the 5th or 6th seed then we get the nod because we beat both of them heads up. so root for the packers to beat the lions and red hot tampa bay to knock off the panthers. and go rams to beat the 9rs.

  23. By ryan on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    OR- if CARSON keeps growing the fu-man-chu we will win out, win the division, win homefield advantage, win the playoff games, and the superbowl!!! LETS GO RED BIRDS!

  24. By Scott H on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    JTDG –

    I hear ya but I DO NOT think the Seahawks would go all out to beat the Cardinals – rivalry or not – in a game that might essentially be meaningless for them. With a SB in their sights, why are they going to risk getting key players hurt just to beat the Cardinals in a game that doesn’t affect them at all??? That makes no sense. SUPER BOWLS are what trumps all. That is the ultimate goal. And when that goal is is within your reach, you do everything around what puts you in the best position to reach that ultimate goal.

    Remember a few seasons agao, when the Colt had a chance to go un-beaten in the regular season with wins in the last two games? And remember what they did? They rested their golden goose ( Peyton Manning ) so there would be NO chance of him not being healthy for the playoffs. They ended up hoisting a SB trophy a few weeks later and I really don’t think anyone cared about those last few weeks.

  25. By ored on Nov 27, 2013 | Reply

    two seperate thoughts there,rest and insure you’re healthy or continue on and keep the rythm and momentum,i’m sure either way has worked previously,just depends on the team and coaches,but my preference in our case would be to get seattles best shot,win that and our confidence goes over the top.,not to mention a small bit of redemption to go with that swag.

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