Peterson wowed NFL fans across the nation with his four punt returns for touchdowns. Peterson, however, struggled in coverage most of the season. Will he take the next step towards becoming a shut down CB?
Watching a Peterson interview is like listening to a veteran interview. The man is confident and has a very professional demeanor. He is a hard worker and has immense talent. Truly, he has everything needed to be elite.
Peterson has already conceded that the punt returns will become a smaller part of his game, as he wants to focus on being a CB first. While this is disappointing in a way, it also is an indication of how serious Peterson is about being the best.
Coming from the Pittsburgh Steelers, will Gay be an effective CB for the Cardinals?
Right now, the Cardinals coaching staff has Gay starting across from Patrick Peterson. Watching him miss a few tackles on Sunday against the Saints, his play hasn't been inspiring.
However, it is just preseason, and with the CB depth on the roster, it will be interesting to see who emerges as a starter this season.
Will the 5'8", 181l lb. CB continue to overachieve for a roster spot?
Many believe that "Money" Mike Adams is one of the best tackles on the team. However, a report from Pro Football Focus has stated that Adams actually misses a high percentage of his tackles. Of the 30 tackles he made last year, he whiffed on seven.
If you compare his stats to the rest of the defense, he is actually the worst tackler from last year. Again with the CB depth this year, Adams will have to have his best offseason yet to stick on to the roster.
After missing last season with a knee injury, will Toler come back to his old form?
A healthy Toler adds tremendously to the defense. In 2010, Toler raked up 82 solo tackles, two INTs, two FF, one FR, one sack, nine passes defended and a touchdown. Not too bad for a second year player.
Toler, now entering his fourth year, has a tough road ahead. However, everyone knows what he is capable of. If Toler plays at his former level this year, he should quickly overtake Gay on the depth chart.
When Toler went down last season, Jefferson was asked to fill in. He had an up-and-down season; will he be able to play consistently this season?
At 6'1", 190 lbs., the now third-year veteran has the size and athleticism to be good in the NFL. However, he has not been able to piece it all together. With a full offseason and tons of competition, we will see if Jefferson will be able to rise to the occasion.
When the Cardinals drafted Fleming in the third round over Bobby Massie, collectively, Cardinals fans questioned the coaching staff's sanity. Another CB, really guys?
However, he has quickly justified his draft status by having a strong camp showing. Will Fleming become a contributor this year?
With the depth above him and below him, Fleming is actually in a great position. He will most likely make the roster, but won't be forced into the action too early. With his skill set, he could quickly become a very good Nickel CB.
Crezdon Butler, Marshay Green, Blake Gideon, James Nixon, Larry Parker and Eddie Elder are all competing for just a few spots on the roster.
So far, Gideon and Parker have flashed some ability. With a strong preseason, either one could make the roster. At the least, they may be able to get on the practice squad.
Wilson surprised many fans last season with a very strong year. Now that Wilson is an Arizona Cardinal for the rest of his career, will he be able to continue to perform at a high level?
Despite Wilson being 32, he is one of the scariest DBs in the NFL. At 6'3", 230 lbs. and massive hops, Wilson is a force. In 2010, many of us believed he finally lost a step, but redeemed himself in 2011.
Wilson is a class act, a ridiculously hard worker and is a leader on and off the field. After watching Wilson for the last decade, it is hard to imagine him not being one of the most dominating safeties in football.
How will Rhodes adapt to the new Cardinals defense?
2011 was the first time in Rhodes' eight-year career he didn't play a full season. Coming back from an injury at the end of the 2011 season, he flashed his ability quickly with two fumble recoveries and 34 tackles.
Look for Rhodes to have one of his best seasons as an NFL player this year. With an improved pass-rush and being creatively used by Ray Horton, Rhodes will be in position to exceed his former level of play.
Johnson missed two tackles last season. With Adrian Wilson getting older, will Johnson be able to take some snaps from him and establish himself as the heir to the SS position?
Whether you like Johnson or not, the fact that he missed only two tackles last season is pretty remarkable. In his three years with the Cardinals, Johnson has been a steady and consistent player.
However, while Johnson hasn't given up many big plays, he also hasn't made any big plays. In three years, Johnson only has one FF, one FR and only one INT. He will need to step up his game sooner or later; here is hoping it is sooner.
Will Sanders fit in Ray Horton's defense?
With seven years of experience in the league, six with the New England Patriots and one with the Atlanta Falcons, Sanders has been a consistent player. However, he, like Rashad Johnson, struggles from a lack of big-play ability.
In seven years in the NFL, Sanders has only eight interceptions. Sanders now steps into a defense that creates ample opportunities for big plays. Sanders will need to make a few plays to help this defense and to find himself playing time.
Another late-round, small-school prospect drafted by the Cardinals, Bethel has immense talent. Will he be able to transition that talent to the NFL?
Blocking a kick on special teams is definitely a way to get yourself a roster spot. With four safeties ahead of you on the depth chart and a ton of defensive backs that can also play special teams, it is going to be hard for Bethel to stick around.
However, as a draft pick with tremendous talent, Bethel has everything it takes to start in the NFL. He will need a strong preseason to stick around.