Seahawks — and the season — aftermath

Posted by Darren Urban on December 31, 2017 – 7:59 pm

It was late in Sunday’s game, right after Phil Dawson kicked his field goal to put the Cardinals ahead by two with a little more than two minutes left, when offensive coordinator/O-line coach Harold Goodwin found someone on the sideline and exclaimed, “We’ve got no linemen left.”

Goodwin smiled, because the reality was that he was right and that the Cardinals had also somehow made it work well enough to win – again – in the one place they want to win more than any other. It was also fitting given how the year unfolded. The Cardinals very well could have had issues even if everyone had played this year. But they wouldn’t be convinced they wouldn’t have overcome it and found a way into the postseason, not after getting eight wins despite their starting offensive line getting all of eight snaps together and their MVP-type running back playing less than a game and their quarterback less than half a season.

“It’s really hard to walk away from this,” Bruce Arians said. “It wasn’t hard to walk away four weeks ago, when you looked at what we were playing with. But to win three out of four, it’s very hard to walk away from that.”

Arians insisted he hasn’t made a decision. We’ll know soon enough. But for all the ups and downs of the season, it is remarkable they went 8-8.

“We’re just happy we finished the way we did,” defensive lineman Frostee Rucker said. “We didn’t want to finish 7-9. We wanted to finish 8-8.”

— The Cardinals, after all that, were the only 8-8 team in the league. They will draft 15th in the first round – unless, of course, they make a trade.

— Kerwynn Williams set a career-best with 23 carries (for 75 yards) and Elijhaa Penny added 39 yards and a touchdown. The Cards, even with all the offensive line issues, ran the ball decently. They struggled late, but it was enough. Penny was huge on the winning field-goal drive.

— There probably wasn’t a better place for Chandler Jones to try and get two sacks to break the franchise record, but there it was – and Jones missed out on a couple more, losing one on a facemask and having another near-miss. To get 17 sacks in a season is impressive. To have Jones do it in the first year of his new contract bodes very well. That trade couldn’t have worked out better.

— After the first half, it looked like Larry Fitzgerald was going to have a good shot at the NFL receptions title for a second straight season. Eight catches in the first half, but none in the second – although he was targeted. He and Drew Stanton just couldn’t connect. Fitz needed just one catch to set a career-high in a season, and instead he had 109, tying his big 2015 season.

Whether he gives it another try in 2018, well, that too is up in the air. But you knew that.

— You can argue about Drew Stanton’s ceiling but he did go 3-1 as a starter and Fitz tweeted he was playing on a torn ACL. I’m not sure how much medical background Fitz has, but that says a lot about Stanton. UPDATE: Stanton said it was not an ACL, but a bone bruise.

— Dawson bounced back so well this season. When Arians mentions winning three of the last four, he was a big reason why. He made 22 of his final 24 field goals, and one of those was blocked. It’s interesting that the Cardinals have won two games in a row in Seattle thanks to field goals.

— The Seahawks’ big second half cost the Cards’ defense a chance to be top five in the rankings. They finished sixth.

— It’s New Year’s Day tomorrow, but certainly no holiday, not for the Cardinals. Exit interviews await, as well as, well, a lot of stuff. One way or another.

“There are a ton of decisions this offseason,” cornerback Patrick Peterson said. “Steve Keim has his work cut out for him.”

— Time to fly home. The offseason is here.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Blog | 66 Comments »

66 Responses to “Seahawks — and the season — aftermath”

  1. By Joe holst on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    Josh Hamilton is going to be their new head coach.

  2. By Steve on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    I’m glad we could send BA out on a winning note, those post game tears said it all, he is going to step down soon, thanks Bruce for being the best coach this team has ever had.

  3. By georgiebird on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    Nice win- the team has played hard for BA. Now it’s Steve Keim time- everything for next year now hinges on all the moves SK will make including the draft and FA.
    Don’t expect BA back.

  4. By georgiebird on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    One thing about all the injuries. Except for David and Markus, the replacement guys were just as good as the guys they replaced- if not better..

  5. By DZ on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    Good for the Cards!!! Way to fight it out to the end one more time with this team.
    The end of the game couldn’t have been more poetic.
    Hopefully we saw the end to the Seachicken bag of fairy dust that seemed to be endless over the past few years. Of course in my house it has been known as douche bag dust.
    Go Cards!!!

  6. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    The wins in Seattle under Arians (4-1) are quite the story, but so is the fact that the Cardinals playing at home against Seattle in the Arians era are 0-4-1. That doesn’t get mentioned a lot.

  7. By Darren Urban on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    Ottis —

    RE: Seattle in Phoenix

    It does get mentioned the week the Seahawks come to town.

  8. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    Stanton is a great backup. True Grit! But it also should be pointed out that he hasn’t been able to complete half of his passes in the last three years (49.7%, 39.6%, 44.0%) and has a lifetime completion percentage of 52.4%. He could make a good transitional QB for a rookie next year, but he is what he is at this point in his career. You can win some games with great defense completing less than 50%, but it’s not going to be enough over the course of a 16 game season to get a team in the playoffs (not to mention the defense running out of gas late in games at the season progresses).

  9. By cardsbaby on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    So glad we held on to beat these knuckleheads.

  10. By Matt on Dec 31, 2017 | Reply

    If Bruce knew Drew tore his ACL and thought that was a better start then Blaine Gabbert then that is stupid. I love Larry but I hope that he was was wrong. Pat Shurmur would be a great fit for head coach! Need a qb though we may not be able to get one. If thats the case draft an OL or CB.

  11. By dynosoar on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Two seasons derailed by injuries. Fix that and we are plating to be in the big dance.

    While I’d love to have BA and staff for at least one more season I am behind him whatever he decides. But as long as he’s our team’s coach, I’m not calling for anyone else.

    So good to defeat Seattle in Seattle. It was sweet to hear the crowd go silent as they missed their last field goal attempt. Oh so sweet!

    Larry! Larry! Larry! and Palmer for one last hurrah, going for the ring in 2018. That’s my feeling. We’ll see, but I feel they’ll do it, but they’ll need BA.

    They really will be all for one and one for all. We get all three or we get none. That’s my feeling and I see them all going for it one last time. They’re competitors and they haven’t achieved their ultimate goal.

    Happy New Year!

  12. By Hammy on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    What a game! When we were up by a couple touchdown I knew the Seahawks would fight back, but what a game! If this is it for Bruce, Fitz, and Palmer….THANK YOU! These guys have been a joy to watch for the past few years. Personally I hope all three come back for one more year with a healthy roster. Draft the best available quarterback in round 1 or trade up to get the best in the draft. I would draft heavy on the offensive side of the ball and just use a pick or two on the defense. We are not that far away from being a playoff team again. The rookies got good reps this year and that should help out a lot. On to the draft and free agency! Go Cardinals!

  13. By jeffcardinalfan on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    1-to finish at 8-8 …pretty good considering all the key injuries

    2-pp gives up ANOTHER TD IN 4RTH QUARTER

    3-kick coverage units lousy again!!

    4-typical seahawks game…lots of penalties…while they say you cant officiate intent it was clear that several of the late hits on Stanton were deliberate

    5-im sick of seeing the planned td celebrations early in games

    6-ba and mb had looong meeting before game…I think ba told players it was his last game

    6-picking at 15 means no top 3 qb without a trade…

    7-if cp retires…qb options: Stanton, gabbert, alex smith, bortles, cousins, eli…of these I prefer smith…gabber and cousins may be just good enough to get you beat

    8-once again Stanton proved he IS THE BEST BACK UP QB IN LEAGUE but not an every game starter

    9-with mg back and a good #2 cb defense could be dominating next year

    10-lets hope that sk rebuilds the ol instead of thinking the back ups who played this year are next years starters

    11-if Larry hangs it up cards HAVE TO GET TOP WR IN FREE AGENCY as well as at least one in draft

    12-fwiw my plan for next yr: valdheer and iupati gone-sign two top ol in freeagency and top wr…draft-trade down into late first(elite qbs and corners will be gone by pic 15) and load up on corners, recievers and ol…make trade in 2019 draft for drew lock from Missouri-he already has an elite arm but definitely needs to stay at mizzou for his senior year

    12a-if cards decide to make a trade in next draft I bet Cleveland would trade the #1 pic as they have several first round pics and need lots of players…if si I like rosen or Mayfield…imho darnold is a bust

    14-one thing for sure the offseason will be interesting

  14. By D on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Thank you BA.

  15. By jeffcardinalfan on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    forgot to mention Gresham has got to be gone…low production + many stupid penalties

  16. By horsepedlr on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    thank you cards for beating the chickens.

  17. By Scott H on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Well, if Arians is going to walk away, I am SOOOO glad they got the win yesterday and he can walk away as the winningest coach in team history. That would seem fitting. I’m completely torn on what I want to see here. I love Arians but am concerned about his loyalty and how it seems to affect his decisions. Whatever decision he makes about returning or not….I’m sure he will make the right decision for himself. And that is as it should be.

    This Cards / Seahawks rivalry has become so bizarre for how neither team can win the games at home. Un-believable. The Cardinals haven’t beaten Seattle at home since 2012, yet they’ve won 4 of the last 5 in Seattle. That is wild.

    I love the effort this team has given over the last month or so. Amazing. Good lord…..I’m not changing my overall perspective on this because I’ve maintained all along that the Cardinals were not a playoff team. And yet, they ended up within one win of a record that would have had them in the playoff race to the same extent the Seahawks were going into yesterday. Wow.

    Phil Dawson figured so big in these late season wins…..where the hell was that kind of consistency earlier in the season??

    A strange similarity between our win in Seattle last year and the one yesterday – both games were decided / won on a late FG from a Cardinals kicker that struggled considerably during the season. Remember the 50-some yarder from the Cat Man last year in Seattle? Man, what a smooth kick that was!

    That was a great way to end a really strange season. Some of the ugliest losses we’ve seen in a long time ( Eagles, Rams 2X ), then wins against 3 winning teams down the stretch that we seemed to have no business hoping for around mid-season.

    And now, we wait. We wait for decisions from our head coach, our starting QB, and the best and most beloved Cardinals player in the team’s history. They could all return or none of them may return. Seems a fitting end to a very strange season.

    Man, already 5 head coaches fired…….Black Monday, indeed.

    A black Monday for Ravens fans, too. Man… let the BENGALS knock you out of the playoffs they way they did……holy cow, that’s gotta suck.

  18. By Big Ken on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Who’s Josh Hamilton?

  19. By mitchaz on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    The Cardinals absolutely dominated every aspect of the first half, except for another STs nightmare.

    If anyone didn’t know which team was still alive for a playoff berth—he surely would have thought it was the Cardinals.

    Bruce Arians has proven that his teams in bad years will not quit. Over the past two seasons he is 4-0 in games after mathematical elimination from the playoffs. Tough part is his teams for the last two years only won 11 meaningful games, a sharp contrast to winning 14 games in 2015.

    While it was wonderful to watch the Seahawks implode down the stretch when they usually pull rabbits out of their hats or the officials’ pockets….winning games like this are kind of like sifting for fool’s gold.

    The fact is the momentum of winning two meaningless games at the end of last season—did not carry over into this season. Even worse, those games gave the GM, HC and the staff the false impression that Justin Bethel could be the starting RCB, that Evan Boehm was ready to be the full-time starter at RG and that Brandon Williams would be ready to challenge for significant playing time.

    As for the Seahawks, I said this earlier in the season to the hilarity of others, but it would not surprise me if Pete Carroll is let go. That team, despite its record over the past few years, is a total mess. Just in the past week, you have Earl Thomas running over to the Cowboys’ locker room to tell them “come get me.” Then, despite BA’s locker room message last week of going to a “home game in Seattle” to “kick their arses”…and that being given national notoriety, how in the world could the Seahawks come out of the tunnel in the game so poorly motivated. Pete Carroll has lost that team and it is obvious. The penalties that team commits are of the utmost boneheaded variety, as we saw today. And the decisions—why play the last minute so ultra conservatively in order to set up a 48 yard FG by Blair Walsh…the very same PK who shanked a chip shot at home in mind that should have eliminated the Seahawks in the 2015 playoffs.

    BA was all hugs and buddy-buddy with Carroll after the game, and Carroll was kind and gracious to give BA credit and kudos for the win and for his career (if this was his last game)…but then BA says at his press conference “welcome to my house.” Arians made this all about him. He didn’t say welcome to our house. When Fitz was asked about that remark from BA he sort of bristled and said, “Well I don’t know about that, but it was great to get back to .500 and end the season on a positive note.”

    This post game comment is, once again, poor form and poor sportsmanship. As much as I can’t stand Pete Carroll, mostly because of the envy I have felt about how hard and tough his players usually play, has Pete Carroll ever called U of P a “home game” for the Seahawks? How would that feel to us Cardinals’ fans if he did?

    Well, Arians never beat Carroll at U of P. Not once in 5 tries. And winning meaningless games in Seattle the last two years doesn’t quite seem as exciting as winning when the games really matter. The fact is too, that Carroll came to U of P in 2015 to put a licking on the 13-2 Cardinals in hopes of knocking them off their perch…and one could argue that the Cardinals, after that 36-6 pasting, have not been the same ever since. Curious that 31 year old Sean McVay of the Rams decided to rest his key starters versus the 49ers today (taking a 34-13 loss), recognizing that being healthy going into the playoffs is the wiser choice.

    The standout efforts for the Cardinals today came from QB Drew Stanton (who is now 7-1 in his last 8 starts and who, according to Fitz, played the last two weeks with an ACL tear), the makeshift OL (even when Boone and Boehm were injured, Watford and Painter helped get the offense in FG range—thanks too for another boneheaded roughing the passer penalty, this time by Bobby Wagner, after a 3rd down incompletion), Ts Holden and Wetzel help up pretty well, all things considered, WR Larry Fitzgerald and RB Kerwynn Williams who carried the offense in the 1st half. RB Elijah Penny ran hard and well on his carries, one for a TD. On defense: DE Chandler Jones (17 sacks—a Cardinals record!), DT Olsen Pierre (who is becoming a beast in the pass rush), DE Robert Nkemdiche (for making his best splash play of the season) and DE Kareem Martin (for his QB pressures). On STs…K Phil Dawson closed out the season very well, as did P Andy Lee and LS Aaron Brewer—plus, the team got a very good kickoff return from D.J. Foster (and a nifty RB loop pass from Stanton late in the game for a key conversion).

    Again, while these last two wins feel good…let’s not forget that the Cardinals went 1-5 in 1 PM (EDT) starts and lost those games by a combined score of 265-120 (that’s 26.5 to 12.0 ppg). Let’s not forget that the Cardinals lost twice to the Rams by the score of 65-16. Let’s not forget that the Cardinals lost both of their prime time games (both at home) to the Cowboys and Seahawks by a combined score of 50-33. Let’s also not forget that before the defense finally got on a roll, they gave up 31 points to QB Tom Savage and the Texans at a critical point in the Cardinals’ playoff contention.

    Let’s also not forget that the only Cardinals who played consistently well throughout the seasons are: WR Larry Fitzgerald, OLB Chandler Jones, DT Corey Peters, DE Olsen Pierre, S Budda Baker, S Antione Bethea, S Tyvon Branch, CB Tramon Williams and P Andy Lee. These are the only players on the Cardinals who earned PFF grades for the season in the 80s.

    No Cardinals player had a consistently good season at QB, RB, OL, TE, WR (other than Fitz), and ILB. Budda Baker and Kareen Martin were the only two draft picks over the past 4 years to make a consistent impact—and both were late season substitutions. Unfortunately, RB David Johnson, OLB Markus Golden and T D.J. Humphries were lost for the season to injuries. Player development, particularly of high draft picks, continues to be an area of utmost concern.

    This was a team that was maddeningly inconsistent. It was also a team that only showed up when it wanted to. The injuries took their toll, but the last few weeks proved that the Cardinals could still win games if the defense stepped up, the offense could protect the ball and the STs could hold their own.

    BA deserves kudos for not letting his team quit. His playcalliing the last couple of weeks have been some of his best. It’s frustrating that the types of effort we saw the past two weeks were not evident in a number of previous games. However, BA ends this season, as he did last year on a high note, and he is now the winningest coach in the history of the Arizona Cardinals. There was a time when BA’s teams were consistently competitive—more so that any other teams previously. There were stretches of games that were exhilarating to watch. For that, and for all the great moments over the course of 5 years, thanks to BA and the coaching staff.

  20. By mitchaz on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    And then there is the on-going situation with Patrick Peterson. Let me put it this way: in my opinion, either the Cardinals find a coach who can bring out the best in Peterson or they should trade him while they can for very good value in return. Look—his man coverage is very good (although he did give up 26/394/4 TDs/83.6 QBR on 60 targets this year—plus 8 penalties)—but, in a way his man coverage allows him to hide and play in a bubble—and these days you cannot hide a player on defense—teams are too well coached—they will find that player and exploit him, as we have seen this year.

    Look at his feeble punt returns today. Why do they still (after 4 years) have him faking it out there? It’s a joke. He even fair caught a line drive with wide open field in front of him. Then later he let a normal punt bounce on the 15 yard line (luckily it bounced backwards). On the one punt he tried to return up the middle he took two steps and then took an Ellington-esque dive.

    Why did Amos Jones put Peterson, the worst tackler on the team, as a safety on the kickoff team? That’s right, he was safety—right to side that Lockett ran through—and Peterson played it the same passive, run-toward-the sideline-way that he plays a screen to his side—and you know what—how does Peterson look his teammates in the face after plays like this? Fact is, 43 year old Phil Dawson made a far stronger effort to tackle Lockett. That’s no lie. Budda Baker came screaming across the other side of the field to try to chase him down and almost got there, while Peterson was trailing the play.

    Then in coverage Peterson got called for holding once again on the slot (which he tells the coaches he does not want to play) when the Cardinals DL was in Wilson’s face again—and that let the Seahawks off the hook and helped them go for their first scoring drive. The TD he gave up to Baldwin was perfectly executed, although Peterson hasn’t been turning back to the ball lately on fades, which the Seahawks picked up on….like the fade TD he gave up to Hopkins. The guy is hiding out there. But, the irony is, it’s now too obvious. How many times did the camera man zoom in on Peterson after another one of his feeble tackling efforts? Heck, he made Russell Wilson look like Mike Iupati.

  21. By Steve C on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Kerwyn Williams stepped up BIG time for them. Their running game after losing DJ and then AP looked like toast, but they came thru very well and may have lost 2 or 3 games without it.

    I hope BA stays. Class act and i think great coach. But health is everything because FB (as does life( goes on without you, so he needs to take care of himself, maybe in front office or something.

  22. By John S. on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Good game guys/Cards, some excellent efforts shown, and you certainly aren’t quitters per se in giving it your all out there to end the season on a high note. And Stanton, he may not put up the greatest stat numbers when starting, but a pleasure to watch him play the last two weeks and leading the team to wins. Hangs in there, smarter play than Gabbert, and I’m still of the opinion that we’d have a win or two more if not for the so-called “experiment” at the QB position so to say. Also feel the Team reacts/plays better as a unit with him out there, as part of the reason. Water under the bridge now, but I wouldn’t be in a big hurry to replace or find another #2 QB next year myself if running things, ha!
    Again, I hope BA, Fitz, and Palmer are back next year to give it another go… if players can manage to stay healthier next year than they did this one, a few changes here and there, FA and draft needs, and we’ll be in the play-offs again as a threat I’m sure… go Cardinals!

  23. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    As for the game;

    The first half looked like a team that had been missing most of the year. They ran the ball, threw short passes to Larry and kept Stanton out of bad situations.

    Against a solid pass rush, Holden and Wetzel held their own. The defense was suffocating and just shut Russell Wilson down.

    Then, the seahawks came alive in the second half and began to slow the run game and forced Stanton into 3rd and longs and took Larry out of the game.

    But hey, we had a big lead and the defense was playing great. Why worry ?? Except, again, this top 6 defense did what they have done all year. They gave up 17 points in the second half and 10 in the 4th quarter.

    Then, after Stanton drives us to a go ahead FG, the defense allows Seattle to drive easily down to win the game, only to miss the game winning FG.

    Why is there a constant collapse by the defense nearly every game in the second half?

    I think, more than injuries, more than dropped passes and poor blocking, 2017’s story to me is why did the defense give up so much in the 4th quarter?

    From Detroit collapse in game one, to allowing a FG in overtime vs colts to Dallas scoring 14 in the 4th quarter to win, to Tampa scoring 28 points in the 4th, to allowing seattle to score a TD at home in a close game in the 4th, to allowing Jax to put up 14 in the 4th, To Houston , while leading, gave up 14 in the 4th to lose, Then yesterday, they fell apart in the second half and , only a poor kick, allowed them to walk away with a victory.

    Great Defense? Top 6? The difference between 8-8 and 11-5 is the defense gave up three 4th quarter leads in games we lost. Great defenses don’t do that.

    Think about that. If the defense just hung on to the leads the offense gave them in the 4th quarter, this offense that had so many injuries and played 3 QBs, this team would have won 11 games.

  24. By Adam Smith b1723 fka DTL on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Goodwin, Betcher, Shurmer?

  25. By creditcard on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Thank you Bruce Arians, you brought candor, humor, and respect to not only the AZ Cardinals but to the whole league.

  26. By creditcard on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    I would like to take this time to thank the Chicago Bears organization for passing up on Bruce Arians.

  27. By joe holst on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    my bad-
    Josh McDaniels

  28. By Chris G. on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Farewell BA. I have a feeling we will continue to see you on Monday Night football as Gruden’s replacement. Thank you for making our team more relevant and respected in the league. It will be an interesting off season.

  29. By Patrick on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Using Mitchaz stats for Patrick Peterson. (although he did give up 26/394/4 TDs/83.6 QBR on 60 targets this year—plus 8 penalties)

    60 targets against the other teams WR1 in a SEASON is GREAT!
    26 receptions given up to the other teams WR1 in a SEASON is GREAT!

    PP2 is a shut down corner! He is not a problem area.
    When the Cardinals got a good CB2 and the safeties controlled the TE and RB the teams defense excelled.

    PP2 is a stud!

  30. By Louis Callegari on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Good job B /A you will be miss very much.Good luck in your new career GodBless.

  31. By Steve on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    JTDG: Baker Mayfield in the first round? Looks like obviously Rosen, Darnold (if he comes out) will be long gone and I think Allen goes top 5 too. Maybe Mayfield is still there at 15.

  32. By Steve on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    ….or Luke Falk in the second round but I think even Falk goes late in the first round to NE or somebody.

  33. By Dr. G. on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    MitchAZ – and jtdg ((your opinion please))

    Your notes on Peterson get some push back because the detail you and I post is ignored purely for hype without watching his activity on the field. He is one of the softest backs in the game.

    ((As mentioned prior, if the coaches encourage soft play to avoid injury, this is simply ridiculous. This is the NFL!)) He avoids serious contact with his own intentions. And he certainly did not show 4.34 speed when Lockett blew by him with 40-plus yds to catch up…just gave up.

    Agree, trade him while the hype is still there. Now, for the push back…be well

    Oh… the documentation of your game observations is superb as usual.

  34. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Bruce Arians retires;

    The BA era ends with beating the hated rival seahawks. If you are not going out with a ring, that is the second best way to go out.

    Congrats to BA becoming the all time winningest coach for cards.

    As much as I want to go over the accomplishments of BA, The coach in me has the mentality to move on to the next thing.

    Remember this name. John Defilippo.
    Don’t be surprised if the cards make him their new head coach. A QB coach with the Eagles, he is that young QB whisperer, who would match up with that young QB who is drafted.

    Defilippo worked with Palmer in 2012 as QB coach. A year Palmer threw for 4000 yards and 22 TDs. I have no idea the relationship between the two.

    He worked with Derek Carr, in his rookie season to emerge as a budding star.

    He went to be the OC with Cleveland and Under DiFilippo’s direction in 2015, Browns QB Josh McCown finished with a 93.3 quarterback rating, the fifth-highest mark in franchise history.

    Now, he is the QB coach with the Eagles helping Wentz become a star.

    Now for the dominos.

    If DeFilippo is the guy, does Palmer stay one more year as does Fitz????

  35. By D on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    I know it’s a very long shot, but it’s worth a call to the HC in Ann Arbor.
    He would get fans and players excited.

  36. By Scott H on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Darren –

    I swear, over the past month or so, I am encountering situations where I post comments, I see where they are awaiting moderation, then they disappear. I’m not using obscene language or anything…..are you deleting posts these days or is this a problem on my end that I am obviously not aware of??

    And Happy New Year to you, sir!

  37. By Darren Urban on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Scott H —

    RE: Comments

    I have not deleted anything you have written.

    There are times when there is a delay in posting — as much as a day, depending on what I am doing, especially on weekends — but no, no deleting.

  38. By Brett Colorado on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Thank You Coach

  39. By Richard S on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Watching the game I thought Drew did really well and I was ready to proclaim him the next starting QB. Afterwards I looked at the Stats like Quarterback rating and what not on ESPN site under scores and box score and they weren’t that good. How did the Cards win that game anyway with those stats? I guess the only stat that really counts is the final score. As to the next coach, I came close to naming the Oakland A’s coach many years ago. The Oakland Tribune had a thing where you got to vote for the next coach in the paper (not sanctioned by the A’s of course). I sent my vote in for Hal Lanier as I read the A’s were looking for someone who had been a head coach and had minor league experience. Since Lanier was named minor league coach of the year for the Cardinals farm team. I figured he fit the bill pretty well. Also he played in the Bay Area with the Giants. The next day the paper printed the results and Hal Lanier had one vote, my vote. A few days later I read Hal Lanier was coming out to the Bay area for a surprise interview. Whitey Herzog said he heard from sources that Lanier came in #2 in the interview process.

  40. By clssylssy on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    @Scott & Darren
    I have had the same thing happen with posts at least 6-8 times & assume it’s probably a problem w the WordPress software. I am having vision issues & consequently have some typos or instances when my smartphone changes a word, which could cause the software to believe it was an invalid user?

  41. By Darren Urban on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Clssy —

    RE: Posts

    My first reaction to Scott was that for whatever reason the comments are not coming through. I rarely do not approve comments and cannot recall a time I have ever denied you or Scott.

  42. By Eric G on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply


    The Bears are also looking at DiFilippo, perhaps that’s a sign?

    Thank you BA, for a fantastic five years. You brought a winner to town and a competitive team. Enjoy retirement. Thank you for everything.

  43. By CARDS62 on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Mitchaz and JTDG it is obvious you watched the entire game like I did so I wonder what you and our other fans who watched this entire game think about the following.

    1) I know the game is over and we had more points than Seattle so on paper we won the game. Do you feel we won the game or Seattle decided a loss did not matter so they just decided not to try to win the game? I do not feel we won the game as Seattle drove thru us like a hot knife through butter and 2 of their last 3 play calls at the end of the game did not look like a team trying to definitely win this game.

    2) How do we go from totally dominating the game on offense and defense in the first half to being totally dominated by Seattle’s offense and defense in the second half? Our defense played awesome in first half all over R. Wilson and then Wilson makes all kinds of plays in second half. Drew Stanton on our first drive looks like Tom Brady and hits Fitz underneath all half and second half no Fitz and no dump offs to running backs until game is almost over. I do not know what we had but it felt like we only had 5 first downs the entire second half and two of those were roughing the passer penalties on Seattle. I should have turned the game off at halftime, because man was I happy except for my normal Famous Amos Jones Rant!

    3) Fitz last 2 games has 16 catches in the first half and something like a 30 yard pass interference call and he has 1 catch in the second half. How is this possible? Seriously fans how is this possible?

    4) Well we lost our TEs as part of our offense again. We found them for a couple of games, but they are gone again.

    5) I am glad BA was our coach and I am glad he is retiring. I wonder if it is truly family or if he was being forced to fire some coaches if he stayed? Just so glad Famous Amos Jones is finally gone, and if any team pro or major college pick him up to coach their special teams I will be shocked!!!

    JTDG do you want your guy Defilliopo as a QB coach or as an OC? Wonder if an old guy like Norv Turner is interested in coaching QBs?

    JTDG I watched Sam Darnold play last year and this year and I just do not know about this guy. Are you sure he is the man???

    Hoping all Cardinal Fans especially Steve Keim have a healthy and prosperous new year.

  44. By Dr. G. on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Darren – – not sure where you got the names you mention for prospective HC, but it’s good to see Matt Patricia there…the smartest, down to earth guy in the game.

    I’ve pushed for him for some time now. Working for Belichick and all the different versatility he brings makes him top of most lists now. How sweet would it be to bring BMayfield along also…watching him convinces that we should do whatever to get him…good arm, good checking down, smart, and he now understand that the pie hole can be a distraction. He looks good today in the Rose Bowl.

    Mayfield & Patricia will make a good combo…. Happy 2018 to you and all Cards Fans…

  45. By Darren Urban on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Dr. G —

    RE: Names

    All the names have hyperlinks to the reporters that tweeted the information.

  46. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply


    QB ;

    I agree that Darnald (my top guy), and Rosen (Jared Goff clone), along with Josh Allen will all be gone in the top 7 picks.

    I think, you have to trade up. Don’t assume Cleveland won’t trade the top spot. They also have the 4th pick. The colts have Luck , so they may be open to trade the 3rd pick. Time to get bold.

    As for Mayfield,
    I don’t know how he transfers his game to the pros. I think he looks great as a college player, but his offense is not a NFL offense. He is a play maker, but so was Tim Tebow.

    But what I don’t like is the question mark of his character. I do not believe in choosing a QB in round one that has character issues.

    Luke Falk

    The opposite of Mayfield. He is a solid individual with high character. He can drop a ball into a bucket 40 yards down the field.

    He will not go in round one. He is a system guy. He does not have a strong arm. In his Air-Raid offense, he throws on timing to spots with anticipation. I don’t see him playing in a BA offense that requires you to gun the ball into tight windows and deep outs and seams.

    With BA out, it depends on who is the head coach and what kind of offense will he run. Falk would be good for the niners and Shanahan (prior to Garoppolo).

  47. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Dr G,


    Let me be clear, I am not one who has said anything negative about Pat P.
    I think he is the top CB in football and is an asset to the team.

    Now, I have mentioned if I got an out of this world offer, I would move him. An example would be, the Browns give up the number 1 pick for PP. Or if last year, the Titans gave us picks 5 and 17.

    But, if I can’t get a great deal to land my QB, then no, I am not trading him.

    Frankly, I am puzzled by people who don’t like Pat P. He shuts the best receiver down. Now, as this team began evolving into a zone team, he becomes less effective. But if I was in charge, I would have found a CB last year (Marshon Lattimore, Tredavious White) and match him with Pat P and run man free.

  48. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Picking QBs;

    I love the big 3 QBs in the draft. I think Lamar Jackson is very interesting and could be a stud at the NFL level. I’m not sure I could pass on those 4 QBs.
    But, On the other hand, here is something worthy of consideration.

    Bill Parcell’s has 4 rules when drafting a QB. There have been 7 QBs in the 2000’s to win a Superbowl. Of those 7, 5 meet all 4 of Parcell’s rules.

    1) He must be a senior, because you need time and maturity to develop into a good professional quarterback.
    2) He must be a graduate, because you want someone who takes his responsibilities seriously.
    3) He must be a three-year starter, because you need to make sure his success wasn’t ephemeral and that he has lived as “the guy” for some period of time.
    4) He must have at least 23 wins, because the big passing numbers must come in the context of winning games.

    – Drew Brees, Ben Roethlisberger, Eli Manning, Peyton Manning and Trent Dilfer — met all four requirements when drafted. Of course Brady did not.

    So, who in this draft meets all 4?
    Mason Rudolph and Luke Falk

    Both will be available in round 2.

    There have been a lot of really great QBs drafted over the years and finding that guy is key, but you can’t ignore Parcell’s and his rules. Deshaun Watson and Jarod Goff do not meet the 4 rules but Carson Wentz does.

    It’s interesting to say the least.

    Darren, are you aware of any rules Keim has and is he aware of Parcell’s rules. It would be interesting to hear what he thinks.

  49. By Darren Urban on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: QB rules

    I do not know of specific Keim rules.

  50. By Roland on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    BA you were one of the Cards best coaches of all time. you will be missed on the sideline . Glad to hear you will stay in town to keep doing good work for the kids. as a 21 year season tix holder I thank you for the memories and the50 wins!!! you are a great competitor and it showed in the way the players played.

  51. By dynosoar on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    RE: Posts,

    if I use an email account my wife and I share it doesn’t register. She has a WordPress account that’s linked to that email. If I use my personal (spam absorbing) email, my posts are always recorded. It may be a software thing with regards to WordPress, but my experience may also be coincidence. Good luck with that one Darren.

  52. By dynosoar on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    I really didn’t want to lose Bruce Arians as our coach. I was thrilled when my Tennessee Volunteers went on a coaching search…
    But I didn’t want my Cardinals to be searching for one. This is one Cardinals fan that will miss him at the helm.

    I also believe we have the coaches (or had) and we have the players. If we solve the injury issue, we’re playing for the Big Dance.

  53. By William Barry on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    This is a bittersweet day today, with BA retiring, but we showed a lot of grit and moxie, playing hard for coach. Giving up many points earlier in the season, our defense (ranked 6th in the league, down the stretch of games, from week 10 and beyond……Great job to coach Bettcher.

    A couple of points:

    1. If Palmer stays, get a coach like DiFilippo who had great success with him in 2012.
    2. If DiFilippio is not available, Shumur would be a great HC, he is only 52….and has been a longtime assistant in the NFL
    3. Would like to see bigger WR’s here, even though I like john brown and J.J. Nelson, a bigger more physical WR should be an option in the draft.
    4. We do have a good line, in Humphries,(injured) Wetzel, Boone, VelDeer, etc. Even the replacements, Will Holden played well.
    5. Andy Lee and Phil Dawson, played very well in the second half of the season.
    6. Buddha Baker and H. Reddick played very well this season, and got valuable playing time here, so this bodes well for next season
    7. Olsen Pierre, F. Rucker, Kareem Martin, Deone B. all played well this season, even with the departure of Calais C.
    8. I would like us to trade up in the draft and get Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming.
    9. There is a lot of base talent here, and making the playoffs next year is a must.
    10. Today I watched the Seattle Seahawks post game conference call, and all Pete Carroll said was how good his team played in the second half. Seattle had no running game this year, half the defense was on injured reserve, and their offense was terrible. It was so great to have BA go out with a win vs. Seattle,
    11. I hope Michael Bidwill and Steve Keim make all the best moves for our team next year, and we can, again, become a championship team.

  54. By Adam Smith b1723 fka DTL on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Confident BA will regret his decision.

  55. By William Barry on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Evan Boehm, and Ricky Seals-Jones played well down the stretch too!!!!!

  56. By clssylssy on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    It never occurred to me that you denied any of my posts. I know you don’t always agree with me but I respect your integrity as a journalist and your fairness in posting fan views as long as they aren’t abusive or vulgar. As I stated before, I think it is the WordPress software and a possible coma mistaken for a etc.
    Thank you for your efforts and Happy New Year!

  57. By William Barry on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Would the Cards be interested in Kirk Cousins….he will be a free agent!!!!!

  58. By georgiebird on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Please don’t draft Baker Mayfield- he is Johnny Manziel II

  59. By Dr. G. on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    jtdg ~ ~ no one is suggesting you have said anything negative regarding PP. You say he’s the best regardless of his work on the field. ((Only addressing his play))

    I generally respect your opinion and the detail you usually go into. I was merely asking your opinion of how MitchAZ describes his play yesterday. I’m in agreement with his point that he may need a coach that can bring out the best in him and renew his fortitude.

    Did you really see the game in detail and watch PPs play? Perhaps you didn’t see the game and the detail that Mitch describes in all fairness to you.

    I always watch the replay on TV. Thanks for your efforts as fellow tix holders.

  60. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply

    Dr G,

    Of Course I watched the game. I guess I did not understand what you were asking.

    I think Pat P did not play his best game. Of course he allowed the receiver to beat him by getting room down the sideline. Usually, Pat stays on top and pins the receiver against the sideline.

    Is Peterson the most aggressive player? No. He doesn’t like to mix it up. But neither did Deion Sanders.

    His punt returns are a joke. I think the cards just wanted a reliable guy back there to catch it and if you get a couple yards, great. With Kerwynn hurting and taking carries on offense, they put Pat back there.

    Next year, it would be nice if we could land a guy like Christian Kirk who can double as a punt returner or TJ Logan can take over.

    Pat P is who he is. He can shut down number 1 receivers on the outside. A coach should always recognize his players talents and use him in that way. Lock him on that number one guy, find another CB to lock up on the other side, Bring back T Williams to lock up in the slot. You have two fast ILBs next year (Reddick and Bucannon) to cover backs and TEs along with Budda. Lets just man up and go get the QB.

    But I think a lot of what mitchaz said I do not agree with.

  61. By JTDG on Jan 1, 2018 | Reply


    Defilippo; He would be head coach.

    I think a guy who can work with a young QB, who would run a offense that is more of a quick passing game, finding mismatches, and being innovative.

    The bears have Trubisky and want Defilippo to do with him, what Mcvey did with Goff.

    I think the same with whoever our QB is. (drafted)

    Sam Darnald;

    Love him. Good arm, athletic, good in the pocket, good mechanics, good size. Solid citizen, good teammate and leader. Everything you want in a QB.

    Understand, he is young, and if I was advising him, I would have him go back to school instead of the Browns. But if you had a QB whisperer, he would be a star on sundays.

    As for the game, see my remarks above. I think, with all the holes on offense, they did there best and had a good game running the ball and Stanton made some good throws. On defense, I really do not understand their 2nd half collapses. Yes, they should have lost. But I am happy for the win.

  62. By forbessh on Jan 2, 2018 | Reply

    RE: drafting a new QB

    How come Lamar Jackson barely gets a mention.

    Pros: Young, dual-threat QB (likened to Michael Vick by the great man himself), Heisman winner and runner up this year (with improved stats), playing behind an average O-Line. He is a proven leader with no disciplinary issues. Has a background and playing style very similar to the future great Deshaun Watson.

    If there is a chance, will Steve Keim trade up for him?

  63. By JTDG on Jan 2, 2018 | Reply


    Lamar Jackson:

    I read this scouting report from Bucky Brooks and thought it was one of the best to describe Jackson as an NFL player. I would agree with everything Bucky says here. I think it will take the right coach for Jackson to have success.

    After studying the All-22 coaches’ footage, I believe Jackson is an exceptional athlete with a combination of speed, explosiveness and burst that is hard to find in a quarterback.

    The 6-foot-3, 211-pound junior is a dynamic runner with a slippery running style that makes him nearly impossible to corral in the pocket. He excels on designed runs (QB draws, sweeps and zone-read plays) and is a defensive coordinator’s nightmare as an improvisational playmaker. Jackson’s average of 6.8 yards per carry this season is nearly a yard better than his average from his Heisman campaign. He has posted back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons as a runner while scoring 28 rushing touchdowns.

    Skeptics worry about his frame, but he is noticeably bigger and thicker than a season ago. That’s helped him become a more physical and effective runner on the perimeter.

    As a passer, Jackson displays outstanding arm strength and range. He can push the ball down the field as an effective vertical passer on post and go routes. Although he struggles a bit with his ball placement and accuracy on home-run balls due to his shoddy footwork and fundamentals, Jackson has the capacity to strike up the band as a long-ball tosser.

    On short and intermediate throws, his struggles with inconsistency are also due to his unpolished mechanics. Jackson misses the mark on outside throws, particularly comebacks and deep outs beyond 12-15 yards. He frequently misses high and wide on those throws, which is largely due to his failure to properly step into his passes.

    Jackson is at his best when throwing isolation routes (seams and skinny posts) or simple reads (slants-flats; stick-go and curl-flat). Offensive coordinators will feature those concepts prominently in spread offenses, but NFL coordinators typically opt for full-field reads or pure progression concepts that require the quarterback to tie his eyes to his feet in the pocket. Thus, Jackson still has a ways to go as a passer before convincing traditional play callers that he can fill the role as a high-end QB1.

    That doesn’t mean that Jackson shouldn’t be considered a top prospect at his position. We’ve seen more NFL teams implement spread systems with simplistic reads if the quarterback flashes exceptional playmaking ability as a dual-threat (see Deshaun Watson, Cam Newton and Russell Wilson). With that in mind, it wouldn’t surprise me to see a team place a solid grade on Jackson that reflects his potential to be a franchise QB. — Bucky Brooks

  64. By forbessh on Jan 2, 2018 | Reply


    Many thanks for your post re. Bucky Brooks’ evaluation of Lamar Jackson.

    I respect Bucky and his cohort of experts/scouts for their opinions but sometimes, a GM/coach has to use their own eyes and heart to recruit a player instead of depending on some second-hand punditry.

    Last year for example, the consensus among the pundit class was that Mitchell Trubitsky was better than Deshaun Watson (meanwhile all the evidence from college and the Combines said otherwise). After we have seen them in action in the NFL, very few people will publicly declare that Trubitsky is better than Watson.

    Why L Jackson makes sense for the Cards is that our O-line has been bad for a couple of years now (with our QBs often leading in the no. of hits/sack category), so it makes sense to get an athletic dual-threat QB, who can run and throw (much like Russel Wilson).

    The other top 3-5 QBs in the upcoming draft are seen every year but LJ is the type that you see once in a while.

    I hope we take him (even trade up to get him) if he’s still in play.

  65. By CARDS62 on Jan 2, 2018 | Reply


    I agree with you that our Cardinals definitely need to check out Lamar Jackson. Not saying we should draft him, but we have to do our homework on him. Hopefully he is a hard worker and will listen on areas he needs to improve.

    I like that he is mobile, but QBs have to run smart. Just too many big and fast defensive guys and QBs just can not take hit after hit after hit.

    I like that he wins a lot of games and how he played against a great Clemson team last year.

    We just have to find a long term answer at QB for 2018. Our draft pick does not have to start game 1 or even season 1. It all depends on how our season is progressing and our other QBs. WIth BA gone I will be surprised if Keim does not resign Gabbert and another not too expensive veteran QB

  66. By clssylssy on Jan 4, 2018 | Reply

    What a game! I think it being a “last” was especially telling for many going in, and I am thrilled that we were able to finish on top. I thought Drew was excellent in the first half, and his superb chemistry with the team and football IQ was evident, his toughness and effort was enough to make others in the league pale by comparison. Second half, a little bummy,but, hey, it was the Seahawks and I wouldn’t have expected any less. Good teams make adjustments and come back, that’s what makes them good! The fact that our defense let off the gas and got a little too comfortable has been a problem throughout the last few years, but we lucked out as if it were meant to be.It’s having the good veteran leadership in the lockerroom that helps teams stay the course, (don’t cost all that much but are good insurance for helping teams into the playoffs0…got to know the road to the big dance in order to find the way, and all that youthful enthusiasm still needs steady hands to stay on task.
    With HC heads rolling all day and all the speculation in the press all week, I’m sure anyone who has been paying attention, could sense that after this game the Cards Organization would have many departures and changes including the likelihood of BA leaving to retire. His health issues of the past years have taken a toll, and being a Head Coach in the NFL is probably one of the most stressful jobs on earth. So, for the sake of his health and getting to enjoy his grandchildren and family, I am happy for BA and celebrate a very successful and colorful career;
    IMO, I think SK was woefully unqualified for the GM job and the fact that Michael Bidwill has retained him to help rebuild, doesn’t inspire my confidence; When BA arrived. I recall Michael’s press conference in which. with much enthusiasm, he stated he was bring in “a football guy”. Well, BA, was that “football guy” and while I didn’t always agree with him or like his flamboyancy, there was no denying his knowledge and the respect he had from his players, which is really what makes a great HC.
    Head coaches always are the ones who get thrown under the bus when seasons aren’t successful but the GMs are the ones who give them the weapons to work with so, I would say that the coaches this seasons did much better at working with what they had and winning a few more games than probable than the FO did in performing their jobs. The fact that the two most successful HCs in franchise history were disposed in rather short order after turning this Organization around but hitting a dip, makes me doubt the future.
    Fantastic way to close a chapter. Thanks guys for a wild ride!

Post a Comment

%d bloggers like this: