Keim: Special teams “unacceptable”

Posted by Darren Urban on December 4, 2017 – 8:17 am

GM Steve Keim was, like Bruce Arians, satisfied with the effort from the Cardinals Sunday in a loss to the Rams, but noted that the execution “on all three sides of the ball” wasn’t good enough. Obviously, special teams was part of that, with the blocked field goal, the blocked extra point and a long punt return helping derail any Cardinals’ hopes.

Keim, during his appearance on the “Doug and Wolf” show on Arizona Sports 98.7 was asked directly about the status of special teams coordinator Amos Jones.

“I’m never going to go on record or publicly and bash any of our players individually or one of our coaches,” Keim said. “The bottom line though is, there’s no excuse. Our special teams, it’s been unacceptable, point blank. It’s something that needs to improve and I’ll just leave it at that.”

— Keim reiterated that quarterback Blaine Gabbert has a “skillset that intrigues you,” but that Gabbert needs to find more consistency. Watching Gabbert play now, and what he does, are all “critical moments” in the evaluation of the future. Improvement is still possible, Keim said.

— Then again, when it comes to the QB spot for the Cardinals in 2018, Keim said the team will “leave no stone unturned” when it comes to filling the position. He obviously cannot talk specific players, but the search will include potential free-agent signings as well as the draft (and that doesn’t even include assessing the Carson Palmer situation.)

— The first player Keim mentioned by name, unprompted, was running back Kerwynn Williams, who stats included 97 rushing yards and a couple of cracked ribs. Keim loves Williams’ toughness, and “every time he’s gotten an opportunity, he’s stepped up.”

— The Cardinals indeed have had a ton of injuries. But “I don’t think you can ever use injuries as an excuse,” Keim said, noting that he has spent much time over the years looking at the depth chart in his office envisioning what would happen if this guy or that guy got hurt and what the Cards would be in position to do.

“That’s on me,” Keim said. “I have to do a better job going forward.” Keim added “the longer you do this, it teaches you different lessons in terms of building a team and building depth.”

— “There’s a chance” Adrian Peterson (neck) will be able to return this week, Keim said. DL Corey Peters and WR John Brown could return this week too.

— Signing Peters to an extension was important, Keim said. “He’s a player to me who is under the radar.” A leader in the locker room and who plays a crucial role in the defense, the Cardinals consider him a core member.

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70 Responses to “Keim: Special teams “unacceptable””

  1. By Steve F drumm on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    I would put pass rush help up there in our to do list this off season, if Chandler doesn’t get to the QB we don’t have anyone else who can. I like Markus Golden but I feel you can never have enough good pass rushers on your team.

  2. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    “I’m never going to go on record or publicly and bash any of our players individually or one of our coaches,” Keim said.

    Really? You don’t call anyone out by name?

    On Veldheer – “I don’t think it has anything to do with right tackle,” Keim said. “The fact of the matter is he has to get better. He’s got to improve all the little things … his footwork, his technique, his hand placement and get back to basics

    After Cowboys game – He was disappointed with the two chunk plays because defensive backs Justin Bethel and Tyrann Matheiu “did not turn and find the football.”

    On missed FGs – As for Phil Dawson’s missed field goal, “when you don’t produce there is always concern,” Keim said

    Quarterback Carson Palmer, like many on offense, was “up and down,” Keim said. The interception Palmer threw was “unacceptable,” Keim said,

    Backup left tackle John Wetzel “had his struggles.”

    Seems you do Steve. So tell me again why you won’t call out Amos Jones by name ? I mean, the real reason.

  3. By Chris G. on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    To reiterate my post from “Rams aftermath”. It is so obvious what a difference it makes between a great and creative special teams coach versus our current excuse for one. Look at the film Bruce. Two blocked kicks? 40 yard return? Lets not even talk about the huge field position flip when we had them buried deep. If you keep throwing your players under the bus, and don’t do the same to the coaches, you will lose your locker room. The effort on special teams was visibly sad. Accountability needs to be emphasized toward the coaches, not just the players. Set an example with Amos. Hey Mr. Keim, why don’t you take care of it if it is “unacceptable”? Does BA really have complete control over this team? Step up and do your job.

  4. By TucsonTim on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Our special teams, it’s been unacceptable, point blank.” @AZCardinals GM Steve Keim talks after Rams loss

    Pathetic. You’re the freaking GM…DO SOMETHING! Coaches need to be fired. Cutting Ellington was chickens###

    Rams and Cardinals. 2 totally opposite teams going in totally opposite directions.

    The ages of the coaches and players aren’t the only thing, but it is a glaring, in your face difference that can only be solved one way.

  5. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    As for the game;

    – The TD to Sammy Watkins has everyone playing zone except Dansby, who left his area to play man on the RB. Either Dansby blew it or it was very poorly designed.

    – Josh Bynes continues to impress. He leads the team in tackles 2 weeks in a row. Needs to be resigned. To keep Buc at 8.7 million, when Bynes seems like a guy who can play the spot would be a mistake.

    – The Rams pressure on Gabbert was intense. Gabbert was pressured 47% of his drop backs and sacked 6 times. This line just needs an overhaul in the off season.

    – Gabbert has 6 TDs and 5 INTs. after 3 games. Projected out, that is 32 TDs, but 27 ints. I think that is the answer for why Gabbert is not the future.

    – Jaron Brown, John Brown, Chad Williams, JJ Nelson combined for 2 catches for 42 yards. Man do we need a whole bunch of new receivers. Meanwhile, Larry keeps passing milestones. If Larry retires, forget who is going to be QB, who is he going to throw to?

    – Hats off to Kerwynn Williams effort. Tough, tough, tough. You could see him seem to struggle getting up when someone landed on him. 86 yards in the first half was amazing. But 7 carries for 11 yards in the 2nd half, the rams came out and shut down the running game.

    – Reddick has to take over for Dansby. Reddick has no chance off the edge and Dansby just looks old.

    – Troy Niklas made some really nice blocks, especially one where he pulled to open a huge hole for Williams. He caught a nice ball in the seam that was called back because of holding. I think Keim should get this guy resigned, but maybe he doesn’t want to resign after the lack of balls his way.

    – I would like to see more of Will Holden to see if he can play. He has quick feet and is really smart. Huge body and seems to bend well. Maybe our RT is on the roster. If I had a say, I would play Holden at RT and Wetzel at RG the rest of the year and see if you have something there

    – Darnald, Rosen, Allen. Got to get one of them in the draft. It scares me when
    Keim says he will explore all options. The should be one option. How to I trade up to land one of these guys. Then, how do I sign lineman and receivers in FA.

  6. By El Gallo on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    – One must question why SK and BA are both “satisfied” with the effort if it resulted in a loss. So fans should take comfort in yesterday’s play and Chalk it Up as acceptable? Not understanding that logic whatsoever.
    – I have to agree with the comments by JTDG. Players are “the” only ones continually thrown under the pervobial bus in recent and documented past in this organization.
    – Take a hard look in the mirror Mr. SK. Ones actions speak volumes, so your fan base await your next moves. We do expect accountability to take hold. No one is perfect it is understood, not all draft picks are gold, bad calls at critical times kill drives, teams lose, players have lapses in execution, luck plays a roll, refs add to the overall dynamic. But should we the fans also be satisfied as you are?

    — Respectfully, Long time fan here

  7. By joe holst on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Blain Gabbert has engineered 2 TDS in the second half of 3 games, that is not a stat you can in win/build around, I would give him 1 more game then adios.

  8. By Coach K on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    I thought running over the snapper was a penalty? Rams lined up over guard then slanted into our long snapper on both blocks. Where was the flag?

    On another note, Gabbert is definitely a bridge QB

    The QB we need is Baker Mayfield if we have any intention of reaching
    he Superbowl. He clearly has the “it factor” and skill set we need to get to the next level.

    Don’t be surprised if Baker leads Oklahoma to the national Championship. His purpose is not just winning games. His purpose is winning Championships!

    That will continue in the pro’s.

    People who compare him to Johnny Manziel are blind. He is a combination of Russell Wilson and Drew Breese in one package.

    If I’m Keim, I trade the house and move up to get Mayfield whatever it takes.

  9. By Darren Urban on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Coach K —

    RE: Running over long snapper

    As I mentioned ( the rule is in place to protect the LS when he is defenseless, but not so that you can’t hit him at all.

  10. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Watched the Seahawks last night beat the Eagles. Man is that Russell Wilson special.

    Watched Goff play really well against the cards yesterday.

    I see Garappolo got his first start and first win for the niners. With his top receivers out, he managed to have a pretty good day.

    Meanwhile, the cards have a 38 yr old QB rehabbing while a journeyman is chucking balls up for grabs.

    Three young guns in this division. Time to do whatever it takes to move up for the big 3. Darnald, Rosen, Allen. If that means trading you entire draft and a couple picks in 2019, then do it. You can’t compete in this division anymore.

  11. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Oh, 1 more thing. Is Boehm a total bust?

    If not, why isn’t he getting some playing time at center to see what we have. If he sucks, OK, I get it. But man, I would like to see him play center a couple of games to see how he looks.

  12. By forbessh on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Anyone up for firing this apparently clueless GB and the coaching staff?

    The whole team sucks and are embarrassing their loyal fans. In the whole NFL, only 3 or four teams are worse than the Cards but we have the ingredients to be great. We came to see the Cards in London and we left deserving of a full refund for the excuse of a team.

    Nothing I have seen or heard from Steve Keim or BA gives me any hope that they know how to turn things around.

    If I were Mr. Michael Bidwell (which I’m not!) I will do what the Rams did i.e. get rid of an ageing complacent coach and hire someone with fresh ideas. Some of us fans are fed up with BA’s nonsense press conferences and bad play-calling. We also need a new young mobile QB to build the team around. (My pick is Lamar Jackson- someone will very similar attributes and background to Deshaun Watson; don’t let the experts fool you).

    This horror show cannot go on like this.

    Let the real Red Sea Rise Up!!!

  13. By Chris G. on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    The special teams coach of the Rams knows that you cant jump over the center, but you can shoot the gap between him and the guard. Maybe if our special teams coach knew that, he would have coached our guys on how to handle it. At least adjusting to it after the Rams did it on the first kick would show some good coaching. Watching film so it would happen the first time would show great coaching.

  14. By georgiebird on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Two of the top 5 teams in the NFC are in the Cards’ division.
    To make matters worse, the teams we will compete with for the playoffs have young QBs except for the Saints. In order to even have a shot at the playoffs in the foreseeable future, the Cards have to make big-time changes:
    1) the evaluation of players across the board has been poor. Even a guy like Josh Bynes, who is playing only because of Bucannon’s injury, makes no sense. Bynes is a player, tough, fast all over the field.
    2) No player, not even PP, should be untouchable.
    3) STs are a big negative- that’s worse than just being blah.
    4) I think it’s time to blow it up.

  15. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Coach K,


    I, for one do not buy into the fact he is too small. He is listed 6’1″ and a solid 220. If true, his size isn’t the issue.

    My problems with Mayfield have to do with other issues.

    – Rumors he is not very smart (Wilson is very smart). While at Texas Tech, he struggled in academics

    – He didn’t get along with his coaches at Texas Tech, causing him to transfer

    – He was arrested at Oklahoma.

    – He was benched this year and removed as captain

    – Scouts say he doesn’t have a football IQ either

    – He plays in a spread offense that doesn’t do reads and operates out of a shot gun.

    These are legit concerns. Mayfield may turn out to be a great QB. He might even lead them to a championship in college football. But if you sit down and he doesn’t get NFL concepts and his ability to learn is limited, I don’t care how good he is at Oklahoma.

    Meanwhile, Darnald, Rosen, and Allen all run pro style offenses and you have on tape how they go through progressions, if they can make NFL throws. You can project them into your system.

  16. By Matt on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Amos Jones needs to be fired already. Special teams has been a bottom unit for a while. I think Tj Logan will help greatly in the return game with his dynamic speed. Not much usually can be taken from a loss but I think Gabbert showed selective memory and played well. Keim and Arians won’t be here long term.


    Do you prefer Darnold or Rosen for the draft?

  17. By Darren Urban on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Matt —

    RE: QB

    I can’t say that I really favor one or the other. Both have been up and down the times I have watched them.

  18. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply


    Lamar Jackson;

    The guy has talent and I would not be surprised if he goes #1 overall to the Browns.

    I guess I would need to know who our Coach is. If we had someone like Sean McVay or Kyle Shanahan, who is very creative, a combo of Lamar Jackson and David Johnson would be deadly.

    But Lamar Jackson needs to be matched with the right offense.

  19. By georgiebird on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    There was a play in yesterday’s game that was a head scratcher. At the very end of the 3rd quarter (score 26-13), Gabbert on 3rd and 14 threw a deep pass to JJ Nelson right down the middle. There were 3 Rams covering JJ. Did someone know something? The previous play was an incomplete deep left pass to JJ. Thought the play calling could be less predictable to the other team.

  20. By Ric Italia on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Special teams has been a handicapp going on at least 2 years. Mr K you need to start hitting on your draft choices instead of signing retreads. Help I don’t want to become a Bear fan.

  21. By Chris G. on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    It seemed as if the left side of the line (Boone and Veldeer) were opening up some nice holes for the run. So can anyone tell me why we started to run to the right? Why we started to run to the side were we have two relatively young guys filling in? Why we don’t give the guy we drafted as a center a chance to play at center? Does Boehm suck that bad that he cant do better than Shipley? It seems that the coaches are missing their assignments as well. Are the Cardinals hiring? I would love to work for a company where there is no accountability what so ever.

  22. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    The Saints are on their 3rd special teams coach this year!!! Payton and the GM weren’t satisfied with failure after failure. When #1 couldn’t get the job done, they brought in #2. When #2 couldn’t get the job done, they brought in #3 (their retried special teams coach). I wish our front office wouldn’t be so content with such failure. ST has been bad for much longer than just this season!

  23. By NJAzCardsFan on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    It seems SK is always saying this is “Unacceptable”. Other than players that have been filling in for the injured players. I don’t see really any change(s) at all that would make a difference. Just a lot of talk- no action. Gabbert could be a decent starter if he had lineman that could block. The same with the running game. AP is on this team… One of the best running back in the NFL ever and he can gain only 29 yds per game. DJ had the same problem before he went down. Why? They O-line we have couldn’t push a handful of old ladies out of the way at a Walmart “Black Friday” sale. Real change starts at the top- We need a “new” GM and a new coaching staff. One who isn’t afraid to fire coaches, release players that aren’t performing etc. Then the Cards might start winning game again.

  24. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    One more thing about the receivers;

    Larry Fitzgerald has 82 catches on the year. That is more than every other receiver on the team combined.
    Jaron – 25
    JJ – 25
    John B. – 19
    Golden – 5
    Williams – 3

    Thats 77 to Larry’s 82. Dang we need receivers next year.

  25. By Ken Moroney on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Talk is cheap re special teams. No mention of how poorly our defensive pass coverage has been since our DC change. Accountability? Not so much.

  26. By Eric G on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Way to recognize the special teams issues Keim. About 4 years too late, but hey, better late than never right?

  27. By Adam Smith b1723 fka DTL on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Gabbert WIP (work in progress): after recovering from the shell shock of 2 1st qtr INTs, he responded well, got us back into game. Rest of team blew it. From my perspective, I recall when CP first started, what was it? 12 TDs and 12 INTs in 1st 8 games? Then it clicked.

    So, as bad as yesterday was, sanguine about future of gabbert… Far more concerned which chronic Special Teams play, just cant blame injuries over and over and over and over… BA has to fire Amos or BA has to get fired…

  28. By D on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    I am getting the feeling that BA wouldn’t mind getting that final year pay sitting on his boat in GA.
    My first choice would be J. Harbaugh, but realize how slim and costly that would be. (Paying BA and a high profile HC)
    My guess will be T. Haley will be the next HC due to a Offensive mind for a new QB that will be needed.
    As far a# next year QB, I say no thanks to the QB in Buffalo and no to the QB at the Redskins. It’s a weak free agent class as of today looking at 2018 free agency.
    The draft is the answer. Palmer could stick around to mentor and start until the young gun is ready.
    The kid at USC needs to stay in school which he might. That leaves the QBs in UCLA and WY for the Browns and the Giants. Don’t fool yourself, no way AZ trades everything to move up to the top 5 in the draft. I could see AZ drafting M. Rudolph from OK. St. around pick 11-13 range.

  29. By Darren Urban on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    D —

    RE: Arians

    If Arians retires, he wouldn’t get that money. He’d have to be fired.

  30. By clssylssy on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    I see where BA has stated that Gabbard could be extended for next year creating a possible QB controversy. LOL, as if anybody will even care if the Organization doesn’t get their act together and do a complete turn around by getting some real “football guys” in here to not only build a winning roster but also have the staff to develop and coach them up.
    If the Cards are to follow the example set by the Rams, it’s going to take Mr. Bidwill being willing to open up his wallett to be competitive financially. This is no longer your daddy’s NFL, these days money talks and you get what you pay for (if you’re lucky).

  31. By Jo Ball on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Here we go

    Another thing that’s “unacceptable” .. a couple of years too late.

    The slow assessment that has become the norm for this regime is the one true thing that’s been unacceptable. The will to act and adapt has been the second.

    Steve will return next year.. So will Bruce. We’ll be talking about the same things next year. This is getting boring.

  32. By jeffcardinalfan on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    imho cards will pass on matfield because of off field issues…fwiw I think darnold and Jackson are busts..i realize my opinion and a dollar will buy you a soda from a machine but in last 30 yrs or so considering the top qbs in draft ive been wrong on 2 qb’s-deshaun Watson and Bryce petty..though in fairness Winston and bortles aren’t there yet

  33. By Scott H on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    OUR Special Teams are unacceptable?

    Really, Steve? This is just dawning on you now?

    Alright, folks, you heard it – our GM has noted that the play of the special teams is un-acceptable. Boy, I bet we see some action now.

    Our ST’s have been so bad, such a standout in so many of our games over the last couple of seasons. Yet, the coach has remained in place. We had a punter who remained in place for a couple of seasons when his performance was anywhere from below average to just bloody God-awful.

    Accountability in action.

    For the record, I CANNOT STAND the stating-the-obvious rhetoric that GM’s are so big on. It ain’t doing us any good to hear you making proclaimations we ARE aware and have BEEN aware of for a long time now.

    C’mon, man…..spare us the rhetoric and address the problem through SOME type of action that might bring about a much-needed and VERY over-due change.

    Special Teams? Special Needs is more like it.

  34. By Coach K on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply


    Baker Mayfield is reading coverage and calling the offense. Not exactly a dumb guy.

    You have been against Mayfield for some time on this blog, but I think your
    information is not accurate according to what I have heard.

    Yes, he is not your typical goodie two shoes QB like Peyton or Brees, but to label him dumb and a legal liability is going too far. I did a lot of dumb things myself as a kid. I did not allow those mistakes to shape my future.

    Mayfield is a version of Russell Wilson with a little bigger chip on his shoulder. I want that kind of guy leading my team. Not some goodie two shoes mommies boy.

  35. By Fmr USAF Pilot on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Keim said the team will “leave no stone unturned” when it comes to filling the (QB) position.

    What a joke!!!

    I suppose that means that he’ll be “AGGRESSIVE” as he was in FA this year???

  36. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    I have been on record since early on in the season that I think Keim and BA should be fired. I don’t know if Keim will be fired, but as for a new coach, here are some suggestions.

    When looking at a head coach, you need an offensive mind if you are going to draft a QB. You need someone with a history of either working under great OCs or a history of improving marginal offenses.

    Some guys I would consider in no particular order;

    1. Pat Shurmur – OC Minn Vikings –
    Why – The Vikings had a horrible Oline and have gone through 3 starting QBs in the last couple of years. Right now, the Vikes have rolled out 9 straight wins with great Oline play and have Case Keenum playing like a pro bowler. He uses his TEs well, mixes his run game with short passing . The vikes have 19 TDs to only 5 ints, so he stresses not turning over the ball.

    2. Josh McDaniels – OC for Patriots
    Why – #1 offense in football. Uses everyone as weapons. Is creative. I’m not as high on him as others because I wonder how much is him and how much is Brady?

    3. Jim Bob Cooter – OC for Lions
    Why – Former college QB, who has worked with QBs through the years including Peyton Manning in Denver. Has helped Mathew Stafford have his best years

    4. Frank Reich – OC for the Eagles
    Why – Former QB, QBs coach and OC for the Chargers and now Eagles, he has a history of success. He has designed a offense that plays to the young Wentz’s strengths. But he isn’t pass happy as he has developed a solid run game.

    5. John Defilippo – QBs coach for the Eagles
    Why – He has worked with Wentz, Sanchez in 2009, Carr in 2014, helping all 3 be successful. If you are adding a young QB, it would be wise to have a QB guru..

    There are 5 names I would consider if I were GM of the cardinals

  37. By JTDG on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Coach K,

    Russell Wilson is everything you want in a QB on and off the field. Smart, Great citizen, solid in his community, and came out of a pro style offense. Good student, went to Prep schools, had grandparents who ran universities and was well known as a man of faith.

    I don’t get the comparisons.

    Mayfield did struggle at Texas Tech in the classroom. He didn’t get along with his coaches, forcing him to jump ship after one year. He does run a spread offense. He was arrested. (which made YouTube-see attachment) He did get sat down and had his captain taken away. He also looks like he goes down easy when tackled by police.

    These are all facts. You can’t dispute them. You can come up with excuses, but thats all they will be.

    Has Mayfield been the top college player in 2017? Probably. He should win the Heisman. He could lead his team to the National Championship. He may become a great NFL QB. He may straighten things out.
    But for me, if I am taking a QB in round 1 in the top 10, I can’t have huge character issues. Too risky.

  38. By Scott H on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Fmr USAF Pilot –

    RE: Will leave no stone un-turned….

    Yeah, just like the aggressiveness we saw in finding a CB2 this past off-season, right? Where all they did was hold a competition among players already on the roster just so they could proclaim Justin Bethel the winner, then pluck Tramon Williams off the scrap heap right before the season?

    Yeah, they sure turned over some stones there, didn’t they?

    Hey, Keim, get this – you have NO CREDIBILITY at all with the fans right now. None. You’ve shown two basic approaches recently – do little to nothing OR vow things like aggressiveness and accountability, then fail to provide them.

    You want us to listen and take you seriously? Then back it up. Action, not words.

    BTW, how are Brandon Williams and Robert Nkemdiche doing these days??

  39. By clssylssy on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Coach K…
    Re: Mayfield
    The guy has skills, I will acknowledge that but have you ever actually been to one of his games? I have, and I am in complete agreement with JTDG. He had skills like Odell Beckham Jr but the maturity & judgement of a Johnny Manzeil. Not saying he won’t make it in the NFL but he’ll need a special setting with a team that has the personnel to provide high maintenance and can keep him on a short leash. His rep has been whitewashed for the draft and if anything very understated.
    Most players hoping to be drafted by the NFL would know there are scouts at the games and have the good sense to show some respect & behave accordingly, rather than grabbing his crotch & flipping off their opponents, people in the stands, alums, children,etc; not exactly the sharpest knife in the drawer or someone I want to see wearing the same uniform as Tillman, Fitz, Warner, Wilson.

  40. By georgiebird on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    Gabbert looked OK yesterday. As I said last week, Gabbert has all the tools to be a pretty good QB. Right now, Gabbert’s achilles is 2-3 stupid plays a game that hurts his teams chance to win.
    But there are far more glaring weaknesses than Gabbert:
    1) Wide receiver group
    2) defensive line
    3) linebacker group
    4) pass defense
    5) Spec Teams
    6) overall team speed (or lack of it)

  41. By georgiebird on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply

    When SK talks about injuries- let’s discuss the Cards’ defense.
    1) Golden is out and that hurts. MG is good not great.
    2) Bucannon is out but his replacement, Bynes, may be one of the best players on the defense
    3) The rest of the defensive players are disappointments- except for Jones’ pass rushing in certain games.
    4) Our defense is probably one of the healthiest units in all the NFL.

  42. By mitchaz on Dec 4, 2017 | Reply


    It seems every QB in BA’s system makes 3 boneheaded plays a game. That has been the rap on Carson Palmer for 5 years now. Part of it is the minimal pass protection schemes and BA’s constant command of “get the ball out quickly.”

    I can’t wait to get a 21st century offense in Arizona. Love what the Rams are doing with their play calling at the line of scrimmage. Plus, they play with tempo. Love that.

    Tempo in BA’s offense is hiking the ball repeatedly with under 5 seconds on the play clock. And even with 6 minutes left in the game, down 13 points, the offense is huddling and the QB is taking the snaps from center (when he should be in a shotgun)—and yesterday with Gabbert fumbling the snap just as Palmer did in Indy in a similar situation.

    Worst of all, because of the lack of priority in maximizing pass protection, Palmer is always getting pounded and injured—and Stanton typically gets injured within 2 games, when he plays. In Pittsburgh, there was great concern that Big ben would have to retire early if BA remained the OC. It’s a high risk, feast or famine offense that typically gets the QB crushed versus the better defenses.

  43. By Hammy on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Listening to Keim talk is like a broken record. He is so contradicting it is ridiculous. Our special teams have been NOTHING since PP’s rookie year when he made a plethora of splash plays and our kicker would make over 80 percent of his kicks.How I miss Jay Feely! The Cardinals are trending in a bad direction and it seems to me that Steve Keim is putting his loyalty and trust in Coach BA way too much! He should take a lesson from watching Rod Graves and Ken Whisenhunt get shown the door for not being consistent and building a WINNING football team! My question is besides the two years going to the playoffs under BA, what has he done for us lately? Who is calling the shots in this organization? BA or Keim? Keim has not drafted well and BA has not coached well. How much time until Mr. Bidwill says “Ok I’ve had enough, lets move in another direction”??? Really hope a decision is made on this coaching staff this off season. We cannot continue to employ our special teams coach, defensive coordinator, OLine coach.When something is broken you have to do whatever it takes to fix it!

  44. By Coach K on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    clssylssy, JTDG

    I totally understand your points as stated above, but I have coached quarterbacks for 17 years and I see things a little different. Yes, character is a huge deal and in the NFL it is under a bigger microscope. But I’m telling you Mayfield is NOT anything like Johnny Manziel. His arrest and disagreements with coaching staff at Texas Tech do not bother me one bit.

    I have dealt with young men just like Baker who did some really stupid things, but today when I see those young men with their families around town I continue to be impressed how life molds boys into men. When I look at Baker, I see a kid with a huge chip on his shoulder from past disappointments.

    He walked on at TT and immediately won the starting job as a freshman. He then was injured and for whatever reason, was not given an opportunity to earn his job back. This was what led to the disagreement with the head coach. He knew he was better but was denied the opportunity to compete. That’s like keeping a tiger in the cage. He is going to lash out.

    In a nutshell, he is going to mature and become one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.. I understand exactly what makes Mayfield tick. And he is the guy who could turn everything around for the Cardinals. Darnold also has some of this “IT FACTOR” as well and I like him as well.

    I don’t know much about the other quarterbacks. It’s always a crap shoot when it comes to transition from college to NFL. You better have a backbone and thick skin and that is what Mayfield has for me. If I’m at war, I want Baker Mayfield in the fox hole with me.

    What everyone sees as flaws, I see as character building events. A cocky boy growing into a man. B.A. is the perfect coach for Mayfield because B.A. will literally be coaching a reflection of himself.

  45. By Coach K on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Bottom line. This guy is a winner!

  46. By lacardinalsfan on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Two days and no changes to ST as of yet?

    Fans of this team would have let Amos go 3 years ago.

    Keim all bark no bite. Just like getting a QB in the draft. Too scared to make a bold move.

  47. By JTDG on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Coach K,

    Mayfield is a winner…… in college. Can his game translate to the NFL?
    I think there are legit questions. It starts with the middle school offense he runs, it ends with his antics. His struggles in class (when you know these star players get all kinds of help and take pretty easy classes) is a huge red flag. Either he is not smart or he is lazy. Question marks. Most QBs under 6’2″ do not make it. Another question mark.

    Now, I am not saying he shouldn’t be drafted, but I am saying, he can’t be drafted in the top of round 1 with all those question marks. Round 2. That is where Mayfield should go due to the risk.

    But here is the biggest difference between college and pro.
    When that QB walks into a pro locker, he is dealing with men. Grown men. Men with families. Men who understand they are at work for a business.

    When you are a brash kid, who hasn’t played in anything close to a pro style offense, who strolls into a locker room, you are looking across at men like AP and Larry Fitz, Alex Boone, Corey Peters, Pat P. They have seen all kids of guys walk in and they know what is up.

    Mayfield has so little respect from the teams he plays, they wouldn’t shake his hand before the game. Instead of being a man, he fell right into it and began his taunts and grabbing his crotch. Do you think Carson Palmer would have done that? Heck, do you think Carson Wentz would have done that?

    Do you think men like Larry would want to follow a guy doing that?
    Players are sick of OBJ and he isn’t the QB or leader.

  48. By JTDG on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    As for Famous Amos being removed.

    BA has said he will not fire an assistant coach. But Amos’ contract is up at the end of the year. To save face, he will not renew the contract, but keep him till the end of the year.

    In order for Keim to flex his muscle, he would risk BA walking right now. Whether you are for BA being dismissed or not, it is never good to do it with 4 games left.

  49. By georgiebird on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    re: Gabbert stupid plays
    Yes, the play calling has to be better. On the Cards first snap of the game, Gabbert threw a difficult down and out to JJ and it was intercepted. Such a tough pass after sitting/standing for about 10 minutes- don’t know who called that play.
    But, more importantly, Gabbert’s concentration has to be better. BG has to protect the ball better.
    BG has played for bad offenses in Jacksonville and SF and I think he feels like he has to do too much. Brady gets most of his days work done with 10 yard passes.
    Looks like BG should get on an off season program like Goff had and get a bit stronger.
    I would definitely offer BG a contract. BG will be a playoff QB in time. Could see him going to a defensive minded team like the Ravens and doing well -Flacco will be 33 in January and has talked about retirement.

  50. By Eric G on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Mayfield = Leinart 2.0

  51. By Chris G. on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    I think the coaches really do read these blogs. Amos Jones gave all of us, who bashed special teams, a thumbs down!

  52. By Scott H on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Darren –

    Can you please stop using this pic of Keim? It bugs the hell out of me seeing HIM looking so aggravated when WE are the ones stuck watching this team every week. I’m wearing that same face these days…..and he is pretty much the reason for my disdain.

  53. By Darren Urban on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Scott H —

    RE: Picture

    Come on, man. This idea that fans are bothered by this team’s performance more than the GM … I’m sorry. And I know I’ll get a whole litany of “how can it bother him, he hasn’t done anything to fix it” comments. Again, I understand how fans feel. But the fans caring more — it drives me nuts.

  54. By erik on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply


    I do not follow college, so I don’t have an opinion on the QB debate. Although I do seem to hear Mayfield’s name mentioned more often than others.

    I wanted to comment on the rude gesture to the crowd. If I remember correctly, didn’t Carson Palmer give the “suck it” gesture to the Seattle crowd a year or two ago?

  55. By El Gallo on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    “But the fans caring more — it drives me nuts.”

    – Is this the kind of talk season ticket holders and long time committed fans should expect coming from this organization??

    – Isn’t the whole point of a fan to care about their team? That they spend time, effort, and hard earned money to root passionately for their team. We spend money to watch the team, go to games, buy team apparel.
    That revenue then in turn goes to those who benefit from it in one way or another. President, management, coaches, players, stadium. The key difference of course is SK gets paid the fans do not. He may indeed care but there’s also money going into his pockets. We do care if not then all this is for not, the players could be playing in a park for free or empty stadium, and the fans spend their interests and cash somewhere else.
    – Fans want to see a competitive team. If there are issues keeping the players and the team from winning and there are no significant changes being made to correct said issues then isn’t it a problem?
    – Why aren’t these problems being fixed if they continue to occur within the same phases of the game, particular players week after week. Where is the disconnect? How much time does he need?
    – Granted, we don’t know or see all the behind the scenes activities going on. But we don’t have to, we as fans see the product that SK is putting out on the field as the organizations GM.
    – SK mentioned consistency being an issue. Who then is accountable for making sure there is consistency at all levels, coaching staff to players? Is the blame to always go on the players? And if so why do they continue to use them if they’re not successful on the field?

    — Respectfully, long time fan here

  56. By Darren Urban on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    El Gallo —

    RE: Talk

    1) I’m not speaking for the organization. I never speak for the organization. That’s not my job. I didn’t say it drives people nuts, or Steve Keim nuts, or the Cardinals nuts. I said it drives me nuts. Am I not allowed to have an opinion too? I assume you come here for my input, otherwise you wouldn’t post.
    2) I didn’t say fans don’t or shouldn’t care. I know they care. The argument they care more bothers me. My point has little to do with fans and more to do with what I think Keim is putting into this (or Arians, or players, or whomever.)
    3) Your other points are valid. And I don’t argue them.

  57. By D on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Palmer and BA are tied to each. Both don’t want to end their legacy with this losing season ending in 1 month. Both probably will come back. I think Mr. Keim will have to use his pick capital to move up for a QB in the draft to learn by watching Palmer for one year.

    I will guess the Colts will be the team to focus on to make a deal.
    J.Allen, QB WY will be the target.

    I would love to see in the final 4 games tryouts for a different center. Let’s play E. Boehm at Center for the next 2 weeks. Then let’s see M. Tuerk at center for the final 2 weeks. AZ neeeds an upgrade for the position in 2018.

  58. By JTDG on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply


    Palmer – gesture;

    I don’t know the answer. I don’t remember that.

    Hey, maybe I am wrong. Maybe his antics aren’t that important. I see his draft status from 1st round to 3rd round, so no one agrees.

    My original point is this, the reason people think drafting a QB is a crap shoot is they take guys with question marks too high. I just do not believe in taking someone in the top 10, with all these question marks (height, character, offense, ect).

    If you sit down with this young man and get the answers you need, maybe you take him. I just think, I want to take a top 10 guy with a whole lot less questions.

  59. By JTDG on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply


    Good point about the colts.
    The bears is another team you could trade up with to land your QB.

    I also agree about Boehm at center. Got to see if he can play. He wasn’t a good guard.

  60. By Scott H on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    Darren –

    Hey, I never said Keim doesn’t care. Never.

    But Keim’s job is to be a GM. My job is to be a fan.

    He gets paid ( very well, I’m sure ) to do his job. I do mine for nothing.

    I can tell ya this – I’ve been doing my job a hell of a lot longer then he’s been doing his.

    It’s not a matter of who cares more, Steve Keim or the fans. It’s a matter of my having an opinion about the job HE has done the last two years and how I feel about it. He might care 10X as much as I do for all I know. That doesn’t change how I feel.

    So, everything / anything I’ve said stands.

  61. By El Gallo on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    – Very well, I can respect that. But yes, I enjoy reading your articles, blogs and can appreciate your points of view as well. But I thank you for always giving time to concerned fans Mr. Darren.
    – I can see what you mean now. From the perspective of the fans, over multiple conversations I’ve had with fellow long time fans, we just feel as if those lingering issues could just get a significant change or two.. Maybe then we could get right back into it, competing at the highest levels in pursuit of that Championship.

    – Again, Thank you.

    –Respectfully, long time fan here

  62. By lacardinalsfan on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    I didnt realize that when Keim said “Ill just leave it at that” that he really meant that he was going to litterally leave it alone. Like stop doing his job???

    Another day and nothing changed, way to show them Keim!!!

  63. By lacardinalsfan on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    How is it that fans for years knew Butler was a horrible punter but Keim kept him? How long have fans been saying ST SUCKS!!! And coaching is the aparent problem. It finally took an anniuncer mid game to piint out how the Cards are inept on ST for Keim to finally say something that the fans have been screaming about for 3 years?

    I understand not letting fans dictate decisions in an organization but at some point when my 10 year old daughter can see it our GM!!! Has to be able to see it too.

  64. By eradicator on Dec 5, 2017 | Reply

    I think arguing that Kiem doesn’t care is silly. We tend to care about our performance with regard to our career. That said it should be recognized that while Kiem and the fans are watching the same game on sunday’s, he is getting paid to watch a subpar product while fans pay out for the same “privilige”

  65. By Dan Nicholson on Dec 6, 2017 | Reply

    Former cardinal Corey Chavous, who works on scouting college & NFL players last several years gave high marks for Drew Lock ,QB at Missouri. Lock is probably coming out now that his O C at Missouri is leaving for UCF, Josh Huepel. Lock is real deal Chavous says. Corey also stated the flaws he has are easily correctable . Chavous also says he has best arm, deep ball , is tough, and touch pass needs to be more consistent. Overall ,Chavous put him in 1st round and not lasting past mid 2nd. Watch him in bowl game vs. Texas December 27th and we can all see.

  66. By jeffcardinalfan on Dec 6, 2017 | Reply

    a few thoughts: jerry rice supposedly fell in draft because his test scores were VERY LOW…didn’t seem to matter did it? the character stuff bout Mayfield bothers me more. to paraphrase kevin Costner-every player has a flaw. we need to find out if it matters.

    peyton may have been a goody 2 shoes but we don’t know bout the ped use cause he retired. and the manning family is the GREEDIEST family in pro sports.

    cards should clearly overhaul roster and make some coaching changes and acquire the qb of the future. what will probably happen is this: ba comes back, amos’ contract isn’t renewed and maybe one or 2 new position coaches…a few 2nd tier free agents will be brought in and we will hear all preseason how much better our existing guys are. if carson comes back gabber will not be resigned and Stanton stays…if carson retires gabber will be starter or cards will bring in an average at best qb…greshan remains starting te. with clear needs at ol, dl, wr, and corner cards will prob draft a te and safety with first 2 pics.

  67. By Big Ken on Dec 6, 2017 | Reply

    Hum Yeah. If I personally knew someone who ran from and wrestled on the ground with policemen I would distance myself from that person. Lots of mock drafts now have Mayfield going in the 3rd or 4th round.

  68. By Coach K on Dec 6, 2017 | Reply

    Big Ken

    Running away from police while intoxicated was certainly not smart. but I’ve never known a drunk person to be rational.

  69. By Big Ken on Dec 6, 2017 | Reply

    Okay Coach K., Mayfield’s stock is dropping or seems to be.

  70. By CARDS62 on Dec 6, 2017 | Reply

    Enjoyed all the talk about who we should select at QB. I actually liked the kid from USC more last year than this year. We just have to get this right and I am sure there is a gem or two or three in this QB class. I hope we bring in a QB expert to make this selection for us. I am sorry, but I just do not trust Steve Keim to get this one right based upon his track record. I watch a lot of Big 10 Football so all I can say about drafting a QB is to not draft one from this conference.

    I try to be fair when evaluating our coaches and gm, but the special team situation is how I have came to the conclusion that for me I hope most of the coaches are gone next season including BA, and I am good if Steve K. is also fired. If we bring Steve Keim back for another year or two I am okay if we get him a consultant for draft choices and free agents. Someone gave a great example of the Saints who I believe started the year 0-2 changing special team coordinators 3 times this season and they are in the playoff hunt and our GM keeps our guy for 3 years that even all of us in the peanut gallery knew is just horrible at his job. Even if we were a great team, our special teams would cost us in the playoffs and a great GM or coach knows this and will correct the situation.

    WR comments. How did we go so quickly from the position being a strength to a weakness?

    I do not want to hear another name for our future center on this blog except for Billy Price, OSU. We get our QB with our first pick and trade up from the second round to select Billy in late first round or first pick of second round. Dude is smart with class and has played well in 153 straight college games. Will start even for BA game one and will play in pro bowls for us. You can book this one.

    Hopefully we will not be bad next year so no chance of getting him, but Joey Bosa of San Diego younger brother Nick Bosa of OSU both DE is just like his older brother, a beast and man can he rush a QB.

    JTDG I also have a CB for you, Denzel Ward #12 for OSU. He just keeps getting better and believe he will leave early for the draft.

    Another tough defense for our Oline and Gabbert to play against this week in Tennessee. We are getting a good look at Gabbert playing strong defenses which is perfect for us to evaluate him.

    I appreciate K Williams playing hurt this game and I am sure he is a gamer, but he has been a big part of our problems on special teams last few years.

    Go Cards!

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