March 5th, 2013

Team Report Cards: Cardinals Have a Lot of Work to Do

The Cardinals were off to a great season in 2012.  They won four in a row and had one of the toughest defenses in the NFL.  Then it all went wrong.  They only won one more game the entire season and now they don't have a lot to build on.  WR Larry Fitzgerald will need to lead a resurgence along with his new head coach and some young talent.


Arizona Cardinals
2012 Record: 5-11

Grade: D


The Good:


  • - They started the 2012 season at 4-0 and looked like a surprise contender.
  • - Rookie CB Patrick Peterson had seven interceptions, fourth-most in the NFL.
  • - Brand new coach, Bruce Arians, brings new life to the team.



The Bad:


  • - They were, by far, the most ineffective offense in the NFL.  They ranked last in the league in yards per game with 263.1.  The next worst team gained 297.2. The offense scored the second-fewest points in the league with 250. 
  • -  Their top rusher ran for just 356 yards.   
  • - WR Larry Fitzgerald mustered just 798 receiving yards and four TDs.  This was a result of the Cardinals using four different QBs during the season.  Combined, they threw for 11 TDs but 21 interceptions.



The Future:


  • -Draft: Take your pick.  Other than WR, the Cardinals are desperate for upgrades.  QB Matt Barkley would be on their list if Geno Smith were taken already.  RB Eddie Lacy is a guy to watch for in the second round; he has great size to be a bruiser.
  • -Free Agent Targets: They need help on the offensive line, like most of the bottom teams.  G Kevin Boothe (formerly of the Giants) is a great run-blocker and solid veteran. They also could go for a runner with Steven Jackson, Reggie Bush and Ahmad Bradshaw all available.
  • -Trade For: Finding veterans that know how to win is a must for this team.  Maybe they can get Tim Tebow.  I’ve heard that all he does is win.

What is the Cardinals biggest need?

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