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Video: Cardinals Look to Make a Happy Trip East in Sunday Matchup with Jets

The Cardinals will head East this Sunday as they take on Sam Darnold and the winless New York Jets.

Arizona enters the game Sunday at 2-2, while the Jets are 0-4.

Patrick Peterson and the Cardinals Not Talking Contract Right Now

Patrick Peterson? is scheduled to reach free agency after the season as he goes into the final year of his contract, but as he said over the summer, the veteran cornerback emphasized Thursday he isn’t upset with the situation, Darren Urban of Azcardinals.com reports.

“I’m at peace (with the contract),” Peterson said. “There’s nothing I can do about it. I’m under contract until the end of the season. All I can do right now is play ball. The ball is in my court. All I have to do is go out and play P2 football, playing all-around solid football, taking No. 1s out of the game, not giving up any touchdowns, just getting back to that form.”

Peterson acknowledged his intensity has increased heading into the season, following a year in which he was suspended six games for violating the NFL’s rule on performance-enhancing drugs and struggling for a few games upon his return.

“I’m just extremely focused in getting back to where I belong and where I am accustomed to being, and that’s on top of the game,” Peterson said. “I had a little boo-boo last year, that’s behind me now, and now I’m just extremely focused on the future. I believe there are a lot of great things in store for this defense and myself.

“You hear the chatter. You hear what people are saying. Being a wily vet, a seasoned vet, it goes in one ear and out the other. But for sure, I love proving people wrong. This is going to be a big year for me. I feel like my back is against the wall. That’s when I operate at my best.”

As for his contract, he said he has not had any talks with the team about an extension, but said it doesn’t bother him that teammates Budda Baker and DeAndre Hopkins have gotten deals.

“I can’t worry about anybody else’s pockets,” Peterson said. “Budda and DeAndre definitely got what they deserved. It’s all about timing. I’ve been in this game before, I’ve been in contract negotiations before, it’s not my first go-round. I’m lucky and blessed enough to be in my third go-round seeking a contract. it’s all about timing. With me, all I can worry about is P2. That’s my entity, that’s my company. All I can do is worry about me, and when the time matches up perfectly, we can sit down and talk about some things.”

Who Will Win The NFC West?

The NFC West has been one of the most competitive divisions in the NFL in recent seasons, and that seems unlikely to change in 2020. 

The San Francisco 49ers are coming off an appearance in the Super Bowl and appear locked and loaded to make a run at a repeat of their NFC title. The Seattle Seahawks are a perennial contender under Russell Wilson. The Los Angeles Rams are just two years removed from a Super Bowl appearance of their own while the Arizona Cardinals enjoyed an excellent offseason and are a popular pick to make a leap forward. 

The Super Bowl loser is notorious for having a down season the following year, which is what the market is predicting with the extra juice on the under 10.5 wins for the 49ers. That would be at least three more losses than they had in the regular season last year. I would disagree with that and make San Francisco being solid favorites again. 

Despite a poor showing in the Super Bowl, Jimmy Garoppolo is always a quarterback I have believed in. He was much better than people gave him credit for last year completing nearly 70% of his passes at 8.3 yards per attempt. George Kittle should be relied upon more than ever in the passing game with Deebo Samuel starting the season hurt, Emmanuel Sanders in New Orleans and Brandon Aiyuk adjusting to the NFL game. 

Shannahan’s lethal zone rushing attack with have a three-headed monster to work with in Raheem Mostert, Tevin Coleman and Jerrick McKinnon. Trent Williams was the prized offseason addition at left tackle. 

Despite losing DeForest Bucker on defense, San Francisco should be just as scary on that side of the ball with first-round pick Javon Kinlaw taking his place. The pass rushing trip of Nick Bsa, Arik Armstead and Dee Ford is still as good as it gets. The only question mark remains the cornerbacks outside of Richard Sherman. 

The Seattle Seahawks may have been the most fortunate team in the NFL last year. Of Seattle’s 11 regular season wins, 10 of them were by one score or fewer, and the guys who make NFL expert picks made a killing.. For the 2019 season, Seattle allowed 5.9 yards per play on defense (27th in the NFL) and gained 5.8 yards per play on offense for a negative differential. That’s certainly a far cry from the Legion of Boom days. 

What the Seahawks have going for them is still Russell Wilson, and that always makes them a frightening team to bet against. If his head coach would ever fully unleash him it would be even scarier. Wilson has by far the best wide receiver duo he has ever had to work with in Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf. 

At some point when you go all in on high-priced player acquisitions you will have to deal with it down the line. That is what happened to the Rams this offseason as they lost Todd Gurley, Brandin Cooks, Dante Fowler, Cory Littleton and Eric Weddle. One of the most talented rosters in the NFL for the past few seasons took a big hit. Wade Phillips is also a big loss at defensive coordinator. 

The Arizona Cardinals are a trendy pick to make a big leap forward this season. There are definitely a lot of good reasons to back this up. 

Kyler Murray seems to be the perfect fit for Kilff Kingsbury’s offense and should only get better in year two. That should certainly be true with the addition of DeAndre Hopkins to join Christian Kirk and the ageless Larry Fitzgerald.

The big question for the Cardinals is regarding their defense that finished worst in the league in yards allowed. With the drafting of Isaiah Simmons and the addition of Devon Kennard to go along with Jordan Hicks, Arizona has amazing speed in the middle of its defense. The Cardinals were embarrassing in defending tight ends last year as anybody who specialized in player props knew, so this should be a big help. Although the NFL odds may not be in their favor the Cardinals could be a real underdog pick to win this division. 

Arizona certainly had a great offseason, but still plays in a very tough division. This could be a team that is just another year away. 

Is Cardinals LB Evan Weaver Ready for a Breakout 2020?

As the Cards get set for what should be an odd 2020 season, there’s one player on their roster that could be due for a big season, that being linebacker Evan Weaver.

NFL.com today has a piece out with breakout stars from around the NFL, and Weaver is right at the top of the list.

Here’s what Michael Silver had to say about the linebacker:

I’m definitely going to get laughed at by my esteemed colleagues who graduated from Michigan (Jeff) and Miami (Judy) — and probably even by the proud Howard grad (Jim), too — but my rookie to watch is Arizona Cardinals linebacker Evan Weaver, a sixth-round pick out of … the University of California.

Yes, I’m biased. And yes, I know Weaver isn’t slated to be a starter, or even considered a lock to make the 53-man roster.

That said, I watched this guy evolve from a low-rated recruit playing backup defensive end for an atrocious unit to a game-changing, All-American inside linebacker for an outstanding defense — and the transition was not subtle.

At Cal, Weaver was a tackling machine who was constantly around the ball, came up huge in pivotal moments and never stopped letting his opponents know, even in post-game interviews. He looks like Mr. Incredible (from the 2004 animated Pixar flick) and plays every down like an unheralded and overlooked maniac trying desperately to get people’s attention.

I’m predicting that somehow, some way, Weaver will do just that. It may be primarily on special teams, or it may be as a fill-in, or he may simply will his way onto the field. I know the NFL is a whole different level than the Pac-12, and I know the odds aren’t stacked in his favor.

Patrick Peterson Says the Current Cardinals Team is the Best He’s Seen on Paper

A half-decade ago, Patrick Peterson’s Cardinals were one game from the Super Bowl.

Despite this fact, Peterson believes his current team — one that finished 5-10-1 in 2019 and picked in the top 10 of the 2020 NFL Draft — is the best he’s ever been a part of, at least in terms of projections, Nick Shook of NFL.com reports.

“This is probably the best football team I’ve been a part of on paper,” Peterson said on The Hyperice Lab podcast. “What we’ve been able to add to the team this year, what the front office has been able to accomplish this offseason (without) being able to see guys and not being able to be around, it’s been second to none. I mean, unbelievable.”

Peterson has legitimate reasons to be excited. Quarterback Kyler Murray proved to be worth the No. 1 overall pick in his first NFL season, winning Offensive Rookie of the Year, and Cardinals general manager Steve Keim brought in three-time All-Pro receiver DeAndre Hopkins without giving up much of anything. Add in hyper-athlete Isaiah Simmons as the team’s first-round pick, and you’ve got a healthy amount of positive momentum building into the new decade.

Kliff Kingsbury’s arrival, the team’s selection of Murray and a rapid accumulation of talent capped by the Hopkins trade has shifted Peterson’s outlook dramatically. It’ll be a tough go in a loaded NFC West, featuring the reigning conference champions, but the veteran is ready to make a run.

“It’s going to come down to us to manage the locker room, manage the egos and make sure everybody is on the same page and understand that we have to commit to one another, believe in one another and trust one another,” Peterson said. “If we do those three things, we can be in Tampa (for the Super Bowl) ready to face whoever, and ready to hopefully bring that Lombardi trophy, the first Lombardi trophy, home to Arizona.”

Cardinals 2020 Schedule Released; Opener at San Francisco September 13

The Cardinals 2020 slate is out, and the team will open the season against the NFC Champion 49ers on the road in a tough week one matchup.

The team will play their home opener in week two against the Redskins. Here’s the complete slate for the Cards.

Sep. 13 at San Francisco 1:25 PM

Sep. 20 WASHINGTON 1:05 PM

Sep. 27 DETROIT 1:25 PM

Oct. 4 at Carolina 10:00 AM

Oct. 11 at New York Jets 10:00 AM

Oct. 19 at Dallas Cowboys (Mon.) 5:15 PM

Oct. 25 SEATTLE 1:05 PM

Nov. 1 BYE

Nov. 8 MIAMI 2:25 PM

Nov. 15 BUFFALO 2:05 PM

Nov. 19 at Seattle (Thurs.) 6:20 PM

Nov. 29 at New England 11:00 AM

Dec. 6 LOS ANGELES RAMS 2:05 PM

Dec. 13 at New York Giants 11:00 AM

Dec. 20 PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 2:05 PM

Dec. 26/27 SAN FRANCISCO TBD

Jan. 3 at Los Angeles Rams 2:25

An Educated Guess at What the 2020 Cardinals Schedule Could Look Like

The 2020 Arizona Cardinals schedule will be released in a televised event on Thursday night, and while we already know who the Cards will go up against and where, we don’t know in what order, or what may or may not be on prime time.

Here are the teams the Cards will play:

Home: Seahawks, Rams, 49ers, Redskins, Eagles, Bills, Dolphins, Lions
Away: Seahawks, Rams, 49ers, Cowboys, Giants, Jets, Patriots, Panthers

Today we give a reminder of the teams that we will see the Cardinals in the 2020 season, and we give our guess in what order we will see them in.

(A quick sidebar – we are moving forward with this schedule as if the season will start and play out on time, with no issues due to the covid-19 pandemic).

Sunday 9/13 Week One at Los Angeles Rams
Sunday 9/20 Week Two at Dallas
Sunday 9/27 Week Three vs Buffalo
Thursday 10/01 Week Four at New England (Thursday Night Football)
Sunday 10/11 Week Five vs Miami
Sunday 10/18 Week Six vs Detroit
Sunday 10/25 Week Seven BYE WEEK
Sunday 11/01 Week Eight at NY Giants
Sunday 11/08 Week Nine at Seattle
Monday 11/16 Week Ten vs San Francisco (Monday Night Football)
Sunday 11/22 Week Eleven vs Seattle
Sunday 11/30 Week Twelve at NY Jets
Sunday 12/06 Week Thirteen vs Los Angeles Rams
Sunday 12/13 Week Fourteen vs Washington
Sunday 12/20 Week Fifteen at Carolina
Sunday 12/27 Week Sixteen vs Philadelphia
Sunday 01/03 Week Seventeen at San Francisco

Cardinals Go D in Round One of the NFL Draft, Snag Clemson OLB Isaiah Simmons

The Cards went defense in round one of the NFL Draft, as the team took Clemson outside linebacker Isaiah Simmons in the first round with the 8th pick in the NFL Draft.

Joe Weinfuss of ESPN wrote about why the Cards went the route of Simmons in the first round:

This was about as much of a no-brainer as there’ll be in this year’s draft. Simmons is widely considered the best defensive prospect in the draft and he fell to the Cardinals for no other reason than other teams had needs elsewhere, most of which were on offense. He’s the ideal complement for pass-rusher Chandler Jones and helps the Cardinals take a major step in their defensive rebuild.

CBS Sports asks if Simmons is physical enough for the NFL:

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