Arizona Cardinals vs. New England Patriots: Bold Predictions for Each Team

Jeremy SickelContributor IIISeptember 14, 2012

NASHVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 09:  Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots congratulates teammate tight end Rob Gronkowski #87 on scoring a touchdown against the Tennessee Titans during their season opener at LP Field on September 9, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

The Arizona Cardinals travel to Foxborough to take on the New England Patriots on Sunday in a game that could end up being the most lopsided on the NFL’s Week 2 slate.

These two teams couldn’t be more opposite, namely at the quarterback position.

Arizona threw tons of cash at Kevin Kolb only to have him turn out to be extremely fragile and eventually lose his job to John Skelton. However, now that Skelton is injured, Kolb receives another chance to prove that he is indeed worthy of the lofty price tag.

The Patriots are led by Tom Brady. Not so sure that he needs any introduction, but three Super Bowl titles, multiple MVPs and countless records guarantee his spot among one of the all-time greats to ever play in this league.

Both teams are coming off of victories in Week 1, but no one expects the Cardinals to be the team that emerges from this game with win number two.

Here is one bold prediction for each team in Sunday’s matchup:


Cardinals Commit 6 Turnovers in Blowout Loss

The Patriots defense will never be mistaken for the San Francisco 49ers or the Baltimore Ravens, but it did finish second in the NFL in interceptions last season and tied for seventh in forced fumbles. New England certainly capitalizes on the mistakes of its opposition.

While most of that fortune is predicated on Brady and Co. playing with a lead throughout most games and forcing the opponent to play catch-up, what position do you think the Cardinals will be in on Sunday?

While Kolb played well after Skelton left the 20-16 win over the Seattle Seahawks, history has shown that he cannot sustain that success for long, and the increased opportunities against the Patriots should yield numerous mistakes.

Arizona fumbled the ball twice last week. And while they only lost one of them to the Seahawks defense, players feel the pressure to extend plays when down on the scoreboard, yielding more opportunities to let go of the football.


Tom Brady Throws for 400 Yards and 5 Touchdowns

The Cardinals defense played well last week, but that was against a rookie quarterback playing on the road in his first-ever NFL start. Sunday’s results against the Patriots should end up a tad different.

While Brady’s numbers in last week’s 34-13 win over the Tennessee Titans weren’t very typical of what we have seen from the quarterback over the years, he was very efficient and was able to spread the field quite well; basically, it was Brady being Brady.

The Patriots also benefited from the emergence of running back Stevan Ridley (21 carries for 125 yards and one touchdown). But New England’s offense runs primarily through Brady’s ability to find Wes Welker and Rob Gronkowski in open space.

Look for a lot of that this week, as New England looks to show well in the home opener.


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