Keim: Disappointing, frustrating but Cards won

Posted by Darren Urban on September 18, 2017 – 8:21 am

Not surprisingly, General Manager Steve Keim had his issues with what he saw from the Cardinals Sunday in Indy. Things the Cards have talked about fixing — red-zone offense, cleaning up mental mistakes, fewer turnovers — have yet to be fixed.

“It’s frustrating while game is going on and next day it’s a little disappointing watching tape,” Keim said Monday during his appearance on the “Doug and Wolf” show on Arizona Sports 98.7, “but at the end of the day … I don’t remember how we won the games. I just remember we won.”

— Quarterback Carson Palmer, like many on offense, was “up and down,” Keim said. The interception Palmer threw was “unacceptable,” Keim said, although that was easy to see. (Palmer has thrown a few INTs like that in his Arizona years, when the safety is just waiting there over the top. The one at the end of the Pittsburgh game in 2015 when the Cards had a chance to win that game stands out in my head.) But Keim said Palmer also made a couple of throws not every QB can make.

— I am surprised I didn’t hear about this on Twitter, because usually someone points this stuff out, but apparently backup QB Drew Stanton starting throwing on the sideline at some point during the game and Keim was asked if there was any thought of Stanton replacing Palmer. Keim said Bruce Arians hadn’t said anything to him, and that there have been multiple times when Stanton will throw a bit just to stay loose on a sideline at games.

— Running back Chris Johnson played well, Keim said, and then the GM underscored one of the reasons Johnson was likely released going into the regular season. “He showed a burst I thought quite frankly he was missing in the preseason,” Keim said,

— Keim praised Chandler Jones, who had a handful of tackles, drew a couple of holding penalties and had two sacks. Rookie safety Budda Baker also caught Keim’s eye, making an excellent tackle as gunner on a 55-yard Andy Lee punt to make it a net of 54 yards, and also making a nice tackle of a receiver short of the sticks on a third down. He was also happy with the play of new guard Alex Boone, other than “one or two snaps.”

— The pressure off the edge is good, Keim said, but the Cardinals need to do a better job getting an interior rush and helping collapse the middle. (This was an area of concern after Calais Campbell left. Robert Nkemdiche did play in his first game Sunday, getting 19 snaps, but he did not record a stat.)

— The miss by kicker Phil Dawson was a surprise, as was the one last week. Keim does think the special teams are much better, from Lee to the coverage units. Dawson can’t miss kicks like that, Keim acknowledged, but “he is the kind of guy I have a lot of faith in.”

— J.J. Nelson is still working on things, like getting off press coverage and being more consistent catching the football. But with his speed and ability to get deep, it’s “something we direly need in this offense.”

— The Cardinals flew out on Saturday instead of Friday despite the 10 a.m. Arizona start in Sunday. Usually in such situations, they leave Friday. Keim said a couple of things went into the decision, including the extra-long camp and how much time away from family everyone has had. But he added that it shouldn’t matter. “We have to be ready to play,” Keim said.

— Keim said he talked to David Johnson after the running back had surgery. Told Johnson he can’t get caught up in all the speculation of how much time he will miss. “Nobody can froecasat how much time, especially when you are such a genetic freak like him,” Keim said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if David heals faster than most.”

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23 Responses to “Keim: Disappointing, frustrating but Cards won”

  1. By Kevin Powell on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Kleim should be dissapointed and it is obvious that our interior pass rush is not there we could use Calais or somebody like him. Our O line cannot protect Palmer and give him the time to throw those two areas are our most promblems by far. Seems we just did not make the right moves in the offseason and that is on Kleim. This team will be lucky to be a 500 team and I am not for sure that BA as much as I like him is on top of his game these days. CJ2 should have never been cut and as far superior to Williams or Ellington. This team needs alot of work all the way around

  2. By Marlin on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Let’s give some thumbs to a few guys not getting mentioned:

    AQ Shipley
    Evan Boehm
    Britton Golden

    ……. also, this kid Buddha Baker looks like he should have been a 1st round draft pick. He’s the real deal.

  3. By TucsonTim on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Anybody know how many times BA has won the toss on the road and put the offense on the field only to go 3 and out.

  4. By TucsonTim on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    SK “…I don’t remember how we won the games.”

    Then why do you watch the tape?

    I guess this might explain the FA/draft acquisitions.

    If you don’t change the players and you don’t change the coaches; how do you expect anything to get fixed?

  5. By Dynosoar on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply


    It was a tough loss, but my Volunteers have made a habit over the last couple years of getting far behind and thrilling everyone with a come from behind victory. Except that doesn’t work against the Texas A&Ms and the Gators and the Bulldogs and the Crimson Tides of the world, because they want the victory just as bad and will steel themselves at the end so They’re the ones with the spectacular last points.

    As to Kelly, I’d also like to add Callaway to players from my team that impress me. I feel if Dormandy can just settle down and work on solid mechanics when he’s throwing on the run, he could become NFL material.

    And since you watch a lot more college games and players than I do, Thoughts? How do they stack up?

  6. By Dynosoar on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Scott H.

    I was one of your thumbs up. I do feel the real value of veterans on the team is they’ve been her before and can steel our team so we win the Division with a first round bye. I do believe this team could be a 2017 Super Bowl winning team, they aren’t there now, but how many Super Bowl winners were looking like the winning team two games into the season. (Well, some did at this point and some didn’t.)

    Seattle made it to the Super Bowl a few years ago after starting the first six games 3-3. They peeked right (and then gloriously choked by ignoring Beast Mode.) For the record, the Patriots are at the bottom of my crumb list along with the Seahawks and a couple others. Still, I was one who was discussing whether Marshawn would run up the gut or swing wide to right or left. I was one who added to the extreme silence in the room when the ball was thrown.

    Disbelief and incredulity ran at an all time high that night across the sporting world. (As well as why the Falcons didn’t kick a field goal. Interesting that both incredulous plays had one thing in common, the opponent. Hmmm.)

    Still, 3-3 and they still made the Super Bowl. We can to. Don’t know if we will, but we’re 1-1 and we have Fitz, we can make it and win. One game at a time, so c’mon down Dallas, your next on our list.

  7. By Dynosoar on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply


    Calais Campbell had 0 sacks against the Titans. It will be very interesting to watch him this season. He’s in a different scheme and playing different Divisional opponents. I hope he blows it up down there, but am willing to watch for now.

    Still, it’d be awesome to see Golden and or Jones and or Nkemdiche and or Dansby get four sacks in a game.

  8. By Dynosoar on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply


    can you put up some highlight film on Keim when he played. I think that would be a fun way to spend a few minutes.

    I’ve liked Budda Baker as well. Disapointed we’re still missing field goals. We have a couple local High School kids who never miss and they’re hitting 50 yards out. I’ll have them send some tape to the Scouting department.

    I would think a kicking battle with a High School kid should be a good wake up call. (Not sure how the high schooler would handle the stress of NFL blockers running towards him, but it would be legend if he did win the kicking battle.)

    I watched my Volunteers lose this weekend and the three missed field goals were a factor. How much of a factor would an extra three points early against the Lions have been in the final outcome. We’ll never know, but momentum as we know can hinge on just such a small thing as “splitting the uprights” vs “wide left/right.”

  9. By D on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Surprised more are not giving BA grief about not taking 3 points with a chip shot kick on the road.
    The Oline still played terrible even with a 6th Olineman playing.
    Don’t be surprised if Buddha gets more playing time, he has much better
    Coverage range than Bethea.

  10. By georgiebird on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Some quarterbacks like Brady and Wilson discourage teams from blitzing and putting pressure. Other QBs- like Palmer- encourage teams to put the heat on. Now the Cards’ OL is not that good BUT if I were a DL, then playing against the Carson Palmer statue would interest me and my agent quite a bit.
    In other words, Palmer brings out the worst in a pretty bad OL.

  11. By Kevin S Mesa on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    D —

    I don’t have a problem with going for it on 4th and 1 there. Obviously it depends on a lot of factors, but I think the analytics crowd would support going for it. There are all kinds of studies on this and they generally support going for it on 4th and goal from anywhere inside the 5.

    It’s not just the 7 points vs. 3. It’s the fact that if you don’t make it, you’re talking about the opponent starting at the 1 instead of around the 25. Teams tend to run very conservative offenses on their own 1 yard line, and your chance of a 3-and-out and forcing a punt where you get the ball in good field position are decent. Now, as it happens, that is exactly what we did — and then, with our good field position, we took the next drive all the way down to the 4 yard line where we could’ve turned it into a TD if not for a penalty and then stalling at the 9.

    I don’t know what the AZ offense’s chance of converting a 4th-and-1 with no DJ are. But it’s probably at least 40%. A 40% chance at 7 points, plus 20-plus yards of field position even if you don’t make it, is probably worth more than a sure 3 points.

    It’s the play call (and execution) I don’t like. Fitz was extremely well-covered and it would’ve been a miracle for him to catch that ball. I don’t like just lofting the ball up and praying, even with a receiver as talented as Fitz.

  12. By Tradersbrain on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    CP has a 65 passer rating … however … when the opposing defense is getting to your QB with a three man rush, just how much blame does the QB deserve? BA started moving the pocket later in the game, which gave CP more time. The result was the TD to Nelson.

  13. By clssylssy on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Disappointing, frustrating…well, Mr. Keim perhaps you are getting a sense now of how I (and a few others) feel about the job you are doing as well. Yes, you’ve had your moments for which I’ll give you props (signing some Veterans like Freeney, Cro, Lorenzo Alexander), but the brunt of our situation now, lies squarely on your shoulders, as you are the roster builder. It’s not like the majority or our problems are straiaght out of the blue and couldn’t have been foreseen liklihoods.
    Yes, we’ve looked pretty aweful, but I’m tired of hearing the coaches and FO pass the blame on the guys doing the work and getting beat all to Hell when these issues are nothing new.
    And, FWIW, i did hear that KC would be listening to offers on Alex Smith at the end of the season, not that it will make any difference who we have as QB as long as we can’t put together a decent Offensive Line.
    I was travelling yesterday so missed most of the game, except for what I could catch sporadically in airports and in highlights of the game. But, I was so bummed when I got home I couldn’t even work up enough enthusiasn to turn on the DVR…from what I gathered it wasn’t worth watching,
    Sure glad you had the good sense to resign Chris Johnson, who has the vision to find those skinny routes and do some of the heavy lifting run blocking.
    I have no doubt that the Seahawks will bounce back and get strong as they go, it seems to be what they thrive on and what we use to be pretty good at as well. But, I REALLY dread playing the Rams in London bc, unless we see a miracle, I think we are going to be sorely humiliated.

  14. By Amir on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    This team is bad. They look out of sync and unprepared in all three phases (O, D, and ST).

    After five years, multiple highly paid FA and high to medium draft picks, the OL is still atrocious. Who is to blame? Steve Keim? Goodwin? I think both. After watching Denver’s OL dominate Dallas DL and work in such a cohesion and unison, ours look amateur, confused, and lost.

    This is the biggest issue on this team. Palmer has had some issues but he is constantly under pressure and is never comfortable in the pocket i.e. if there is a pocket which collapses right away even it exists for fraction of a second. Moving JV to RT appears to be a really poor decision as he is struggling quite a bit which again brings up coaching decisions. Either that or JV is playing with no heart as he did not like the move. Regardless the OL is the key as it has completely failed in both pass protection and run blocking.

  15. By Coach K on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    Chris Johnson is like a fine wine. Over time he will get better and better the more carries he gets. All the great ones need to find their groove. When they do, look out.

    Kerwyn is good to give CJ2K a blow now and then, but CJ2K needs to carry the load. The same for Ellington, but neither of them brings what CJ2K can bring.

    Add to that his excellent pass blocking, and you have the best RB for the job.

    BA needs to adjust his play calling to the players he has now. Floyd is gone, and John Brown may not be back. JJ is explosive but small. Fitz is slower but still great. Palmer simply does not have the same athletes around him like they have in Atlanta. So BA needs to find the plays that match the talent he has to work with.

  16. By oscarpa on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    i hope we would’ve lost. I think getting the W hurt the cards more than an L. Everybody in the team from players to coaches, even cards broadcast and media is saying “at least we got the win”, instead of focusing on how horrendous this team is looking this year.

  17. By jeffrsn on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    I’m disappointed in the results of 5 Keim drafts! He has missed on 75% of his picks. We have a great coach with poor personnel. Keim is to blame. He initially tried to patch holes with the signng of free agents, but too many failed drafts has too many holes to patch with the salary cap available. If thios team is going to be a consistent contender they need to find someone who has an ablity to recognize talent. Obviously, Keim is not the solution. If Arians leaves, this team is in for an epic collapse.

  18. By jeffcardinalfan on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    just a thought…I remember a cowboys game(I think it was against cards but not sure) when emmitt smith dropped an easy catch-troy aikman grabbed him by the facemask and told him to get his head out of his xxx. that is what carson , alex smith DONT HAVE. brady has it, rogers has it, peyton, favre, montana, and yes, even jake plummer had it. kurt warner sure had it as well. we need one guy on each side of the ball to act this way. throughout the colts game cards body language showed they expecxted to lose until they got lucky on carsons fumbled snap and also were very lucky on nelsons td catch. elliotts quitting on his team gives cards a ray of hope for next week…Elliott was a questionable character guy coming into the draft and when faced with his first real adversity in the nfl showed this. if we can stop him early and get ahead we could take him out of the game… bethel is playing better-we gotta blitz Prescott a lot-get some sacks and picks. our ol is lousy-gotta continue keeping a back or te in to help-just please let larry run some shallow crosses…for larry to have I think 3 catches is just ridiculous…would you rather have carson throw the ball to larry or anyone else when they are covered-larry gets a lot of those balls-no one else does.

  19. By William Barry on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    The offensive line did ok, but Palmer holds on to the ball too long. it should be 3 steps, and get the ball out of your hands….Palmer plays better when he gets into a rhythm.

  20. By Scott H on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    19 snaps from Nkemdiche? Really? He’s building quite a reputation as a training camp terror and a regular season mirage. Yet another player we were counting on that we’re getting so little from.

    And regarding Steve Keim…..perhaps he should rate his own performance on a weekly basis as he does with the players – who are here by HIS choosing.

  21. By Rich on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    I can only hope the cardinals play better than the opinions offered on this blog.

  22. By MoJoe on Sep 18, 2017 | Reply

    If this team’s offensive talent is what the experts say it is, then I would really like to see what an established offense coordinator could do with it. Matt Ryan loses his OC and Atlanta doesn’t skip a beat. Jim Bob Cooter is the new OC at Detroit and Stafford looks more confident and productive than before. The Colts started a QB with limited team and game time experience and he/they nearly defeated the Cards. How? Play-calling and a good scouting report were two of the factors.I realize we are now without one of our best dual threat weapons in DJ, but a little more ingenuity and less predictability is in order.

    I’m convinced a different offense coordinator would take what personnel we have and not only maximize it, but make in game adjustments so we move the chains and keep the defense guessing, EVEN if our O-line is average. Yes, this would include throwing more to your tight ends. Hell, NE doesn’t have a problem using TE’s and neither does any other team. I know Carson has his physical limitations, but I think its time BA opens up the other 98% of the playbook and starts using it. Mix up the plays and the players and you just might discover another play maker in the process (Chad Williams?) We need ingenuity as bad as we need player development.

  23. By Scott H on Sep 19, 2017 | Reply

    Rich –

    Well, respectfully, if you saw anything in this game that allows you to present a better opinion than the others offered on this blog, then feel free to put it out there. Seriously! If you saw something we didn’t….do tell.

    But I’d rather read about people’s opinions about the GAMES and how the team is playing – not an opinion about other people’s opinions.

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