Seahawks vs. Cardinals: Arizona's Biggest Winners and Losers from NFL Week 14
If you have any affiliation with the Arizona Cardinals, whether you are a fan, a writer, a coach or a player, this is likely one of the most embarrassing days of your life.
I by no means expected this game to be close, but this was just flat out awful. Not only did they allow 58 points, but they also did not put a single point on the board.
At this point in the year, there is a very negative vibe in Arizona. The Suns are below average and the Cards are miserable at best. Through all of this there is still a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.
Let’s take a look at the winners and losers from the Cardinals Week 14 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
Winner: Top Draft Prospects
When you are picked very early in a draft, you are usually being put into a tough spot. The teams with the worst record have the top picks and the players selected are expected to become superstars for their respective teams right away.
That may not be the case for some young draft prospects. The Arizona Cardinals sit at 4-9 and are poised to have a top-five pick in the draft.
This team has a ton of talent and whomever they select will not face as much pressure as guys like Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III face.
Arizona is primed to make a couple of moves to upgrade its roster this offseason and come back strong in 2013. They are not as bad as their record says they are, and one rookie will benefit greatly from the Cardinals' downfall.
Loser: Team Morale
The Arizona Cardinals were on cloud nine during the first month of the season, beating two playoff-bound teams and destroying the then-2-0 Philadelphia Eagles.
A couple of months later and they probably feel like curling up in a corner and crying. They have lost nine games in a row and have lost any and all respect they earned back in September.
Not only did they lose this week, they were dominated. Seattle put the pedal to the floor and did not let up one bit.
It was a slap to the face to the entire team, and they are so down in the dumps that they did nothing about it.
There is no other explanation than they have simply just given up. Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom before reaching your true potential.
This season is a write-off. They have a few months to sulk and feel sorry for themselves before they realize what they are playing for.
Winner: Quentin Groves
One man who has really turned his career around is Quentin Groves. The outside linebacker is in his fifth NFL season and has more sacks through 12 games than he did in his first four years.
The 28-year-old has started just four games for the Cardinals this season, but has put up great numbers in the process. He has set career highs in both sacks (four) and tackles (43).
Five months ago, fellow BR featured columnist Shaun Church stated that Groves is a backup that would start on another team.
With the way he has played in relief of the injured O’Brien Schofield, Mr. Church was certainly correct.
Groves has made big plays both defensively and on special teams. He had another big game today and is making his presence felt this year.
Loser: John Skelton
Just when you thought that John Skelton was done in the desert, he was given another chance to start this week.
After being benched a few weeks ago for playing poorly, you would think that he would come out with a bit of a chip on his shoulder.
That certainly wasn’t the case today as he had arguably the worst game of his career.
Skelton completed just 50 percent of his passes (11-for-22), did not throw a touchdown and turned the ball over five times.
He fumbled the ball twice, with one of those recovered by Seattle for a touchdown. He would also throw a pick-six and had four interceptions on the day.
Arizona has a few different options this offseason at the quarterback position. John Skelton may have just cost himself a job.
Winner: Ray Horton
Even though his defense was obliterated by Marshawn Lynch, Robert Turbin and Anthony McCoy, it is a good day to be Ray Horton.
After just 29 games as a defensive coordinator, this man could have a head coaching job as early as next week.
Ken Whisenhunt has lost control of this team; it is now time for Horton to step in and take control. Arizona is down and out and this franchise is in need of a spark.
He has a very bright future ahead of him and it would be in the Cardinals' best interest to keep him around for as long as they can.
Loser: Ken Whisenhunt
How many times can a man be kicked when he is down before he gets and does something about it? In the case of Ken Whisenhunt, the answer is too many.
You can use any excuse that you want, but the bottom line is that there are teams with less talent having more success than the Arizona Cardinals.
Ray Horton has his group ready to play every week, so why can’t Ken? From not challenging plays to going for it unnecessarily, he has done just about everything a coach should not do.
The Whisenhunt era is over. He has done some great things for this franchise, but he is not getting the job done.
You did it to yourself, Whiz. Best of luck in your future endeavors.