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Arizona Cardinals 2011 Projected Defense

Jack LondonCorrespondent IJuly 20, 2011

Arizona Cardinals 2011 Projected Defense

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    The good news for Cardinals fans?

    We may have one of the best secondaries in the league, with a definite potential to be the best.

    If Adrian Wilson can stay healthy, he should perform better last year.

    And DRC couldn't do worse than he did last year right? Not with the rookie phenom Patrick Peterson across from him now (side note here: Peterson got the highest rookie rating for a defensive player in Madden '12. Aw yeah!).

    And then there's Kerry Rhodes, who had a great year last year.

    So the secondary seems to be set. Even the backups, Michael Adams and Greg Toler, have considerable experience.

    The defensive line is pretty well set. That's what happens when you're playing a 3-4 I guess. And you've got talented youngsters to go along with an All-Pro.

    The linebackers?

    Just call them the offensive line of the defense.

    Ugh.

DE: Darnell Dockett

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    I see the Cardinals going a lot more hybrid this year, with Dockett scooting into a defensive tackle sort of position at times.

    But that's just a gut feeling.

    Dockett should bounce back after a so-so year last year.

    And he'll probably do it all for PETA.

    Ok, maybe not.

    Backup: Gabe Watson

DT: Dan Williams

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    Williams was a late season surprise for the Cards, as he finally took the reigns on the starting job at the end of last year.

    And with Bryan Robinson probably retiring (although correct me if I'm wrong I haven't heard yet), the job is all his.

    If he can eat up space and allow Calais Campbell and Dockett to do their thing, it will help out an already tremendous secondary.

    Backup: Alan Branch

DE: Calais Campbell

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    Campbell has a lot of potential...I think we all know that.

    The question is if he'll live up to the hype this year.

    Backup: Kenny Iwebema

OLB: O'Brien Schofield

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    Schofield may not be ready to be an NFL starter yet, but then again, he may not have much choice.

    I do believe though that when Schofield is in the game, the Cards will give a lot of four-man front looks.

    It seemed to work well towards the end of last year when Schofield got some playing time. We'll see if it works this year.

    Backup: Cyril Obiozor (yep...)

ILB: Paris Lenon

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    Lenon had a fairly good year for the Cards last year, but it's tough when you don't have any consistency in your linebacking corp.

    And Lenon isn't a special player- he can just get the job done.

    So I see him starting the year, but then Quan Sturdivant to take over at some point in time.

    Backup: Quan Sturdivant

ILB: Daryl Washington

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    The good news about last year?

    It got some talented rookies some playing time.

    Washington should be a stud this year.

    Which isn't saying much when you look at the linebacking corp we have in the desert.

    Backup: Reggie Walker

OLB: Will Davis

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    Esh.

    Sam Acho, will you learn the defense quick? Please?

    Backup: Sam Acho

CB: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie

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    Dear Cardinals,

    Please do not trade DRC for a quarterback that could be good.

    Thanks.

    Backup: Will Adams

FS: Kerry Rhodes

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    No question about it, Rhodes was the bright spot on a bad defense last year.

    If he could get some help this season, we might see a shot at a Pro Bowl this season.

    Backup: Rashad Johnson

SS: Adrian Wilson

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    Speaking of Pro Bowls, I'd like to see Wilson earn his Pro Bowl this year...

    Backup: Matt Ware

CB: Patrick Peterson

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    I know Coach Whisenhunt doesn't typically start rookies, but this guy is too good to not start immediately.

    I do think though that Greg Toler will see a good chunk of time early on until Peterson gets his feet wet.

    I can't wait to see what he does on punt returns too.

    Backup: Greg Toler

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