Keim: Watford has earned time

Posted by Darren Urban on September 21, 2015 – 8:07 am

Bobby Massie comes back from suspension today, and so the question has to be asked: Does Earl Watford remain the starting right tackle for the Cardinals?

General Manager Steve Keim, during his appearance on the “Doug and Wolf” Show on Arizona Sports 98.7 Monday, said that later today he, coach Bruce Arians and offensive line coach/offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin will discuss the lineup. Keim acknowledged he usually defers to the coaches in such situations.

But, Keim said, “I know this: Earl has earned the right to be on the field.”

Watford has held up well in two games (against admittedly weaker defenses in the Saints and Bears), especially in run blocking. And perhaps the most important thing to remember is that Arians said it was Watford’s job to lose when Watford was inserted into the starting lineup. It’s hard to think Watford has done anything to lose the job.

As Keim said, “we’ll have some options” at offensive line. Left guard Mike Iupati is expected back this week from his knee surgery, and while Keim said he likes the job Ted Larsen has done, it’s hard to believe the big free-agent signee of the offseason won’t get back to the lineup once he’s ready. Especially going against his former team in the 49ers.

Other Keim comments:

— He said the Cardinals saw some similarities between David Johnson coming out of Northern Iowa and the Bears’ Matt Forte. You have to say Johnson was the more effective running back Sunday when the Cards and Bears played.

— Keim on the Cardinals’ 2-0 start: “More than anything we have a chance to be a pretty good football team if we eliminate the mistakes.”

— The blown coverage that led to the Bears’ first touchdown, Keim said, was a miscommunication between Patrick Peterson and Jerraud Powers trying to cover out of a bunch formation.

— He said he liked the cuts and patience of running back Chris Johnson, and also his toughness in pass protection.

— Keim’s call on quarterback Carson Palmer: “He’s been a godsend for this organization.”

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48 Responses to “Keim: Watford has earned time”

  1. By thepoofighters on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Next up, the Whiners. Let’s get to 3-0. Love the make up of our team.

  2. By Patrick Hoog aka Don't Take Losses on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Near 50 burger in early am roadgame, unheard of. Scored in every phase of game. Nice one. Heard on pregame Cards had loaded bus early Sunday to get to stadium to prepare. In it to win it. Go Cards.

  3. By Marlin on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Carson Palmer is playing at an Elite level. This year, he deserves to be talked about in the same conversations as the best QB’s in the league.

  4. By D on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Can’t wait until this team really get’s rolling…yesterday’s blown coverage and muff punt were the only really bad things to happen…keep Palmer healthy and I see this team winning more than 11 games this year..

  5. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Regarding our OT, is it a bad sign that our 2015 #1 draft pick is on the inactive list? I wonder how many other teams are in the same boat. Doesn’t look all that great when you’re a SB contender, draft a developmental prospect with your first round pick and have your second and third round picks making valuable contributions immediately.

  6. By Kevin Kolb Payback on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Any chance we trade Larson to PHI? They need a guard in the worst way and if Sowell or Shipley can backup the G spot (really wanted to type that) then we should be able to get above normal value for him.

  7. By Darren Urban on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Payback —

    RE: larsen trade

    I don’t see it.

  8. By Dr H on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Carson Palmer is going to take us to the SB!!! BA dodged a bullet – should be thanking the Bears for not taking him!!

  9. By Jimbowan on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    I think Card’s fans need to slow down. There has been so much talk about the lopsided victory, people are forgetting that when Cutler was in it the Bears were in it. Boisterous talk should be left to ignorant New England fans.

  10. By Travis1042 on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Kolb –

    That would make no sense. Don’t mess with a winning team. It’s a joke to think that. Obviously we need him. Iupati has been hurt more than just this year – he has a rash of injuries in his career.

  11. By erik on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    It was 28 to 14 when Cutler left the game. It wasn’t close. The Bears had to rely on a gimmick the Cardinals were not expecting to move the ball consistently. They held Forte in check and the worst mistake was obviously the miscommunication on who was guarding who on the long TD pass.

    If Cutler stayed in the game I don’t think the end result is different.

    I really enjoyed watching that game!

  12. By Andrew on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Agree with Jimbowan. The win is great but let’s pump the breaks on winning/going to the SB, Carson being best QB in the league, dominating our schedule, ect. It’s only been two games and the two teams we beat are a combined 0-4. If Cutler stays in the the game, I do see a win still, but not nearly as blown out as it was.

    Once we knock off a top team, then we can talk about winning the division or playoffs. On a side note – now that teams are showing their true selves, I think our schedule is looking pretty winnable.

  13. By Patrick Hoog aka Don't Take Losses on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Only 2 games, both teams we beat are… 0-2.

  14. By John The Draft Guy on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Iupati will start at some point, hopefully this week. Watford is drawing lots of praise. I think Larsen has played well so far. Massie has been pretty good at times last year.

    It will be interesting what the cards do with the starting line up.

  15. By John The Draft Guy on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply


    Forte comparison;

    Forte is One of the best backs in the league for many years, Forte has the ability to run inside, outside, catch screens or even line up wide and catch the ball. He is faster and stronger than he looks too. He glides with long strides as defenses take bad angles at him misjudging his speed.

    Yep, that is a pretty good description of the potential of this young David Johnson.

  16. By Jimbowan on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    I’m with Travis1042-
    If you find a cheap, solid O-linemen you hold on to him. What could Philly possibly offer in exchange to make it worth our while. Realistically of course.

  17. By TucsonTim on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Did you know our 48 points are the most ever allowed by the Bears in a home game! Winning on the road against any team is difficult, but that is pretty amazing!

  18. By TucsonTim on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Another fun fact, the 170 yards in penalties against the Bears tied a franchise record set in 1944. Frankly, it could have been a lot more as Fitz was mauled on his 28 yd TD reception well before the ball got there. That was quite a catch!

  19. By Coach K on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    I think it’s clear David Johnson is going to be a superstar in his league. Should be fun to watch his progression. Offensive line looks fantastic. CJ was a great signing, and my only concern is the lack of a edge pass rush.

    Without fast edge rushers, the Cardinals will need to continue mixing up a variety of blitz packages involving corners and safeties. Our edge people are simply too slow, or too short armed. Inside we are solid. Outside, we can hold the edge for the run, but pass rushers is our weakness on the edge.

    If we can incorporate elaborate zone type blitzing schemes, we should be alright with our secondary. If the QB gets time, we may have some problems even with our talented back end.

    QB pressure and sacks is a weakness we must solve. Everything else is great!

  20. By jeffcardinalfan on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    this is a reply to above post stating carson should b talked about as an uppewr level qb…of course he should!! hes 15-2 n last 17 starts-best in nfl!! but will he getthe props? no! historically the media has funneled attention away from cards. during the next 2 months if the cards r the only undefeated team in nfl they will b barely mentioned while we will b fed countless reports on romo’s recovery progress. several preseason fantasy projection websites had only one card in top 30 at their position-ellington as the 28th rb. while this annoys me personally I think it helps the cards retain the chip on their shoulder. if cards remain healthy, while they wont go 16-0 the packers r only team in nfc that I wud not want toi play in playoffs especially at lambeau. pete carroll cheated outrageously at usc after failing as jets coach-wudnt it b great if it blows up in his face in seattle this year?national media still has the mindset that hawks r team to beat in the nfc. I wonder if sports illustrated wud have even offered the subscription package they do for all sb winners if cards had won sb in 09…hope to find out this year!!

  21. By Steve on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Darren: Do you know if Nelson was hurt on the muffed punt play? It looked like after he fumbled the ball a couple of guys fell on him as he was trying to recover it. Hope he gets back soon.

  22. By Darren Urban on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Steve —

    RE: Nelson injury

    I am not sure when he was hurt.

  23. By Corgon on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Hi Darren,

    what do you think who are in the Massie bubble?

  24. By Scott H on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    For me, I wonder if it’s almost BETTER for your team ( when you play the Bears ) when Cutler is IN the game. He’s just NOT a good QB. If the Cardinals played to their capability, as they did, Jay Cutler was NOT going to play well enough to beat them. So, it doesn’t matter ( to me ) if he was in or out. I would prefer he stay in. You never know how a back-up QB might spark a team or change the flow of a game. The Cardinals spent the week preparing for Cutler, not Jimmy Clausen.

    Doesn’t matter. The better team won because they were better.

    I don’t want to see people getting crazy yet, either. We’re not going to a SB after 2 games. No one is. Sunday gives us a chance to win one game ( against a division opponent ) and go to 3-0. So…let’s just do that for right now.

    As for Massie’s return and Watford….hey, let the better man win. I don’t care who plays, as long as whoever it is is the guy who makes our O-line as good as it can be. Massie has not earned anything. He brought a 2 game suspension on himself and that gave another guy a shot to slide up in there and make a case for himself. So be it.

    What is good is that we are getting a body back along the O-line. And I can’t believe some people are already clamoring for the team to deal an O-lineman in a trade. Really, WHY? Keep your depth at a position where you can never have enough. And, seriously, what are any of these guys ( Larsen, Watford, Massie ) going to bring in a trade??? Believe me, folks, no one outside the circle of Cardinals fans has ever heard of any of these guys. They have more value right where they are, with the Cardinals, than they do in a trade. None of them is going to bring a notable up-grade at another position and we don’t need draft picks for NEXT year when we are 2-0 and playing for RIGHT NOW.

  25. By Andrew on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    I know it’s only been a game and a half but Nelson wasn’t impressing (more fumbles than receptions). The offense won’t skip a beat without him.

  26. By Nick Pepe on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    What a good start. 2-0 and both conference wins. Offensive red zone efficiency literally could not be better. Palmer being kept squeaky clean. Youngsters shining all over the place. If there was any question if Fitz no longer Fitz is gone. CC a beast on the D-Line. It would take too long to single out all the great performances.

    A little more pressure on the opposing QB. Obviously eliminate the turnovers. Not much to talk and little to complain about.

    Funny how you don’t see anyone asking about the old #58 this week.

    Happy 2-0 everyone

    Nick Pepe
    Lifetime Member

  27. By Jimbowan on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    And then we had two stupid turn overs at the end of the second half. Who knows what the score is going into half time? If Cutler comes back and scores 2 TDs on those drives, the game is much different. I would like to think it is still the same, but I don’t have your crystal ball.

  28. By Big Ken on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    How about a Massie trade? 4th or 5th rounder and he’s shipped.

  29. By georgiebird on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Last week I gave you Tampa Bay over the Saints outright- hope you made a few dollars.

  30. By georgiebird on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Nothing to be learned from the first two games- except that BA is about the best coach in football-again. Hate citing the competition but Tampa Bay can beat the Saints in NO.
    Winning beats losing so the Cards may be a few more gears to the upside as the competition improves.

  31. By rod on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Listing to MNF – Chris Berman makes me want to hurl. How is that guy still voicing things?


  32. By Big Ken on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Hurray for Todd Bowles and his 2-0 Jets.

  33. By Richard S on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    RANK TEAM* RATING Win margin on neutral field Homefield 3 point advantage Won by
    1 GBAY(1) 99.76 5.62 8.62
    2 DENVER(4) 98.56 10.6 7.6
    3 NE(5) 98.02 15.24 18.24
    4 SEATTLE(2) 97.24 14.2 17.2
    5 DALLAS(6) 96.88 7.7 10.7
    6 PITT(9) 96.05 9.43 6.43
    7 ARIZ.(13) 95.32 10.01 13.01
    8 INDY(3) 94.15 10.67 7.67
    9 KC(10) 94.14 -5.62 -8.62
    10 PHIL(7) 94 4.05 1.05
    11 BALT(8) 93.68 0.91 3.91
    12 CINCY(14) 92.77 -0.91 -3.91
    13 MIA(11) 92.38 0.12 3.12
    14 BUFF(15) 92.26 -0.12 -3.12
    15 CAROLINA(17) 90.95 1.16 4.16
    16 JETS(24) 89.95 -4.05 -1.05
    17 NO(12) 89.79 -1.16 -4.16
    18 HOUSTON(16) 89.63 7.8 10.8
    19 ATL(21) 89.18 -7.7 -10.7
    20 GIANTS(19) 88.94 3.54 6.54
    21 SD(20) 88.77 2.77 -0.23
    22 DETROIT(18) 87.96 -10.60 -7.6
    23 RAMS(22) 86.62 -9.43 -6.43
    24 MINN(23) 86 -2.77 0.23
    25 SANFRAN(25) 85.31 -10.01 -13.01
    26 WASH(28) 85 -3.54 -6.54
    27 CLEVELAND(27) 83.72 2.28 5.28
    28 TENNESEE(31) 83.48 -10.67 -7.67
    29 CHICAGO(26) 83.04 -14.2 -17.2
    30 JAX(30) 82.78 -15.24 -18.24
    31 TAMPA(29) 81.83 -7.8 -10.8
    32 OAK(32) 81.44 -2.28 -5.28
    WEEK 3 picks 16 games

    After week 2, 20/32 62.50%
    Initial ESPN power rank in parenthesis after team name. I said Indy was overrated.
    Sorry it don’t go from excel to word very well. Based on games for week 3, the Cardinals should have a 2 game lead over every team in the division after next week. Of course, you can’t count your chickens before they hatch. The last week was a really bad one for prognostication. The system went from 12/16 in week one to 8/16 in week 2. Well if anyone could pick them accurately they wouldn’t need to play the games except for ticket and TV revenue. Really impressed with the players on the team, the only one indispensible looks like Carson. I hope when we play the team in the division with the defensive coach who supposedly put out a bounty on the QB a few years back, we protect Palmer.

  34. By Richard S on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Since I don’t live in Arizona I rely on NFL Network and ESPN to replay highlights of the game as I like to hear what the experts have to say. The first 20 minutes of NFL network was dedicated to covering the Cowboys. Then they stuck 2 plays from the Giants game in, more Cowboy talk and then 30 minutes in, more Cowboy highlights. How much does Jerry Jones pay the NFL network for all the publicity they get. When a young fan picks a team to root for and they see nothing but Cowboy coverage it is easy to see why they call the Cowpokes America’s team. I know my son picked the Toronto Blue Jays as his team to root for as when he started rooting for a team, they were a playoff caliber team. The Cards don’t get much PR. Maybe the players like it that way. One commentator today said the Cards were “sneaky good.”

  35. By Dan on Sep 21, 2015 | Reply

    Massie who?

  36. By Scott H on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    Richard S –

    I hear ya, brother. And how ’bout all the attention that gets paid to Johnny Manzel??? That is just pathetic. The Browns are pretty much horrible, regardless of who is playing QB. But “Johnny Football” will be one of the hot topics on every radio / TV show all week. ALL WEEK. Meanwhile, a QB who is 15-2 in his last 17 starts will barely be mentioned.

  37. By clssylssy on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    While has us rated at #4 (behind the Bengals, Packers, & Patriots) we still seem to be the Rodney Dangerfields of the media, getting no respect. I was just reading where the 49ers are expected to go “Cro Magnon ” on us this week and that the Cards “are bound to face a really good opponent one of these days”,,,talk about a slap! Of course, the same writer also described Palmer and Fitz as “partying like a couple of senior citizens on bingo night” which, hey, if that means beating an opponent by 25 points sounds like my like of party! (And proves that age is only a number when you are elite)
    I do think there are a lot of fans underestimating the 9ers who, in their opener, revealed some pretty amazing weapons of their own, as well as, a very capable QB schooled in the off season by our own Kurt Warner, so we are going to have to clean up the stupid mistakes of previous games and continue to defeat our opponents by the big numbers. The road to the SB starts by winning the division and we need to keep our foot on the gas of BA’s race car! Chicago is now in the rearview and focus is on San Francisco! We need to PROTECT THE NEST while we keep moving forward!

  38. By TucsonTim on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    Can he play center?

  39. By jeffgollin on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    The lack of attention by the media isn’t shocking.

    But when you read between the lines, it’s become CW (i.e a given) in media coverage that the Cards are a good team. They just ignore the highlights (as in David Johnson’s 108).

  40. By Dynosoar on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply


    You wrote, “If Cutler comes back and scores 2 TDs on those drives, the game is much different.”

    The key is, he didn’t. I see a lot of posts saying we shouldn’t blitz so much because we could give up a big play. Perhaps the reason we’re winning is because we ARE Blitzing so much. We may not have gaudy sack numbers, but if the QB is hurred he plays different.

    In Olympic fencing 60% of points scored are from the attack, 25% from defense and 15% from counter-attack. So 75% of points are from a form of attack.

    I love that BA is aggressive on offens AND defense, that’s how points are scored.

    The best clock management is points on the board. That may be why we’re 2-0 and NYG are 0-2.

  41. By Dynosoar on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply


    My favorite RD line

    “I get no respect. My twin brother, he forgot my birthday.”

  42. By Jimbowan on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    I think you misinterpreted my comments. I love BA’s aggressiveness. I was just trying to say the game could have been much different had Cutler stayed in the game. It was pretty close before he went out with a hammy (my personal opinion is it was a heck of a concussion, the bears trying to protect their qb from missing next weeks game, could be wrong. Total speculation). Since your comment made no sense, I’ll respond with one of my own. If the Cards didn’t have Palmer, I would be OK with Cutler as our QB. Bam! Sorry I don’t get to comment very often as a non-facebook member.

  43. By Jimbowan on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    I think you misinterpreted my comments. I love BA’s aggressiveness. Relax bro. I was just trying to say the game could have been much different had Cutler stayed in the game. It was pretty close before he went out with a hammy (my personal opinion is it was a heck of a concussion, the bears trying to protect their qb from missing next weeks game, could be wrong. Total speculation). Since your comment made no sense, I’ll respond with one of my own. If the Cards didn’t have Palmer, I would be OK with Cutler as our QB. Bam! Sorry I don’t get to comment very often as a non-facebook member.

  44. By Scott H on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    clssylssy –

    If it helps you any, the rankings on have the Cardinals 3rd, behind the Packers and Pats, in front of the Bengals. And I’m OK with that. I think that is fair. VERY RARE that I say that about anyone’s power rankings, but I think this one got it right.

    As always, wins and losses will ALWAYS speak louder than power rankings.

  45. By Kevin S Mesa on Sep 22, 2015 | Reply

    Scott H —

    When tossing around that 15-2 stat, another one to go with it: The Cardinals are +174 in those 17 games in point differential. (The 15 wins are by a combined 180 points, an average of 12 PPG. Altogether, 10 of the 15 wins have been by double digits. The two losses were each by 3 points.)

    If you want to focus on just the last 16 games to make it comparable to an NFL season, then you eliminate a 14 point win over Atlanta on 10/27/13. That means over his last 16 starts, Palmer is 14-2 and the team has a +160 differential in those games — higher than any team had last year (although exceeded by Seattle and Denver in 2013). Maybe that will convince some people how good the Cardinals have been under Palmer once the team adjusted to Arians’ offense.

  46. By Scott H on Sep 23, 2015 | Reply

    Kevin – Good stuff! Thanks.

  47. By Kevin S Mesa on Sep 23, 2015 | Reply

    I read the power rankings from time to time — it’s a fun diversion. The guy with whom I get irritated is Frank Schwab at Yahoo. He always underrates the Cardinals at the beginning of the year and then grudgingly moves them up as they win, and then drops them like a rock after a single loss.

    In 2013, we finished 10-6 in the best division in football (Seattle 13-3, SF 12-4, and our “doormat” the Rams were 7-9). Plus we closed strong, going 7-2 in our final 9 games once the team had adjusted to Arians’ offense. So in his preseason rankings in 2014, Schwab puts us… 15th, behind teams like the Bears who had gone 8-8 the previous year. Then he slowly moved them up the rankings as we went 5-1, 6-1, 7-1 etc. But of course dropped us way down when Palmer got hurt. And now this year, despite being one of the top teams in football last year when our QB was healthy, going 11-5 for the year and 11-3 in games not started by our 3rd string QB, Schwab started us this year… 10th, behind, among other teams, Miami, who has gone 8-8 the past two years.

    The good news is, the lack of respect shown to the Cardinals also seems to affect the Vegas lines. In 2013 I made a healthy profit on the “over” bet for season wins which was set at 6.5. Then last year I made an even bigger bet when it was set at 7.5… pretty cool when your over bet has already won after week 9. This year, the line was 8.5 so of course I bet the over again.

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