NFL Team Previews: Arizona Cardinals

Pigskin HeavenCorrespondent ISeptember 10, 2009

DENVER - SEPTEMBER 03:  Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald #11 of the Arizona Cardinals makes a reception and advances the ball against Denver Broncos during NFL preseason action at Invesco Field at Mile High on September 3, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Cardinals 19-0.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Pigskin Heaven's Sascha Bartels is breaking down every single team in the NFL prior to the season. Here is his analysis and forecast for the Arizona Cardinals. Click on a team to read its preview.

AFC East: BUF | MIA | NE | NYJ

AFC North: BAL | CIN | CLE | PIT

AFC South: IND | HOU | JAX | TEN



NFC North: CHI | DET | GBA | MIN

NFC South: ATL | CAR | NOL | TBA


What’s New?

The Arizona Cardinals went to the Super Bowl.  Did that sink in yet?  The Cardinals!  Super Bowl!

And it took a spectacular drive capped by an even more spectacular play by the Steelers to keep the Cardinals from lifting the Lombardi.  Since then, the team had a quiet offseason.

Kurt Warner signed a new deal, and the team is still working on Anquan Boldin.  Edgerrin James was let go, which led to the drafting of Chris "Beanie" Wells.

After the pick of Wells, the team focused on defense, taking safety Rashad Johnson, hybrid lineman-linebacker Cody Brown, and corner Greg Toler.  They also added to the offensive line with guards Herman Johnson and Trevor Canfield.

Three Burning Questions

Can the team overcome the curse of Super Bowl losers?

Only the Seahawks were able to lose a Super Bowl, and return to the playoffs the following year this decade.

Even the Patriots missed the point last year, but they did win 11 games.  The Cardinals are no Patriots.

The team plays in an improved division, and the task to return to the postseason is certainly a difficult one.

Will Kurt Warner be able to duplicate his 2008 performance?

Warner started all 16 games for the first time since 2001.  His 598 attempts are easily the highest of his career.  The man is 38 years old.

Certainly his supporting cast is among the best in football, but the question is can Warner again stay upright, and can he keep Leinart on the bench.

I think he’s due for at least a small decrease in production.

Is the defense going to play better than last year?

Remember, there once was a time when Brett Favre led the Jets to 56 points against the Cardinals, and the Eagles and Patriots came within a field goal of eclipsing 50 as well.

The team ranked 19th in overall defense, and 28th in scoring defense.  Arizona will not duplicate last season’s success if they don’t improve on those numbers.


Fantasy Forecast

Good Plays:  Larry Fitzgerald is one of the top three wide receivers off any board, and Boldin won’t be far behind him.  Warner will still be an effective starter.

Avoid:  Stay away from the Arizona defense.  There is no tight end worth taking from the team either

Sleeper:  Steve Breaston was the sleeper last year.  I think this year that job will go to Jerheme Urban.


For the prognosis and final record, read the originally posted article here.

This is an original article by Pigskin Heaven Staffer, Sascha Bartels. You can read it, more of Sascha's articles, and more from the Pigskin Heaven staff here.


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