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The Arizona Cardinals have been the biggest surprise team of the early season.
After starting the year 4-0, Arizona lost its first game this past Sunday to division rival St. Louis.
Thus far, the Cardinals don’t rank in the top 14 in passing or rushing offense. They also don’t rank in the top 14 in passing or rushing defense either.
So how are they doing it?
Kevin Kolb hasn’t been perfect, but most of the time he has gotten the job done. He has executed three late fourth-quarter touchdown drives and finds ways to win games.
His 1,041 passing yards and seven touchdowns won’t wow anybody, but if Kolb is able to keep winning games, the Cardinals will keep starting him.
The emergence of Andre Roberts has also helped out Kolb early in the season. The third-year receiver out of Citadel has become Kolb’s second favorite target and continues to produce every game.
The defense has also been a key factor in the Cardinals success. Through five games, the Arizona defense has not given up more than 21 points, despite playing both New England and Philadelphia.
Arizona will be tested in the next few weeks as they face Minnesota, San Francisco, Green Bay and Atlanta all in the space of five weeks.
If Arizona is able to come out 3-2 during that stretch, then they will make the playoffs this year, but through the wild card, not as NFC West champions.