2014 DRAFT GUIDE
No simple fix for Cardinals' sputtering offense

    2013-10-22 02:33

(Eds: With AP Photos.)
By BOB BAUM
AP Sports Writer

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) - After a rare weekend off, the Arizona Cardinals donned pads and went through what was described as an intense practice on Monday.

They need the work, especially on offense, following losses to San Francisco and Seattle in a five-day span.

Coach Bruce Arians said there is no simple cure for what ails Arizona on that side of the ball.

''You wish it was one guy,'' Arians said. ''That would be easy to fix. But it's still guys finding roles that should have already found them.''

An anemic running game, receivers who run the wrong routes, linemen who miss blocks, a quarterback who makes bad decisions.

All are factors that have made the offense inconsistent and often ineffective for a Cardinals team that carries a 3-4 record into Sunday's home game against Atlanta.

Since the team played last Thursday night, a 34-22 home loss to Seattle, the players got the weekend off, then under CBA rules, were allowed to practice in pads on Monday in what amounted to an extra workout.

''It was intense,'' right tackle Eric Winston said. ''I think the guys brought a good mindset out there. I wouldn't say it had a training camp feel to it, but it had a little urgency to it, that's for sure.''

Arians came in with an offensive pedigree. The 62-year-old coach has been in the NFL for two decades - as a quarterbacks coach or offensive coordinator until he took over as interim head coach in Indianapolis last year while coach Chuck Pagano was treated for leukemia.

He brought in veteran Carson Palmer at quarterback, but the offense has not progressed the way the coach envisioned.

Palmer has thrown 13 interceptions, second-most in the league behind Eli Manning's 15. Palmer, who has eight TD passes, has a quarterback rating of 69.5. Among quarterbacks who have thrown at least 100 passes, only three are lower - Brandon Weeden, Christian Ponder and Eli Manning.

Arians has gone out of his way not to criticize Palmer much, blaming all four of the interceptions the last two games on the receivers not being where they're supposed to be.

As for the mistakes, Arians said Monday, ''Some are his and some are the 10 guys around him.

''It's the receivers being in the wrong spots, running the wrong routes and not being in the reception areas, and then again the protection,'' Arians said.

Why are players making those kinds of mistakes seven games into the season?

''That's a very good question,'' Arians said. ''You should ask the receivers.''

Wide receiver Michael Floyd said that the team does get frustrated ''but there are times when everything is clicking.''

''We're not going to blame each individual position,'' Floyd said. ''It's a group, all together, all 11 guys on offense. If the tackle doesn't make a block, that's not a downfield throw, that's a sack, even though you're wide open as a wide receiver, or receivers not getting off a press coverage for us.''

Palmer threw 45 times against the Seahawks, completing 30 for 258 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions. He was sacked seven times.

Arians likes to throw the ball downfield, but the Cardinals have only 15 pass plays of 20 yards or more. Only Carolina and Oakland have fewer. Arizona has three plays of 40 yards or more.

Against Seattle, the Cardinals managed just 30 yards on the ground in 18 carries, an average of 1.7 yards per attempts. For the season, Arizona is 26th in the league in rushing at 77.7 yards per game.

''Anytime you put yourself in position where you've got to pass in this league and they know what's coming, you're going to be in for a long day,'' Winston said. ''Against a crew that prides itself on rushing the passer and went out and got a lot of good rushers, you're going to be in some trouble.''

Winston said the team tried to run the ball in the first half without success.

''We got ourselves in a lot of third-and-longs. That doesn't do yourself any favors, too,'' he said. ''We've just got to do a better job of getting up and getting the lead in games. We haven't done that much this year.''

The Cardinals see this section of the schedule as an opportunity to right the ship.

After Atlanta (2-4), Arizona has a bye week, is home against Houston (2-5), then travels to Jacksonville (0-7).

''We have some winnable games coming up,'' Winston said. ''Not to say that any of them aren't winnable, but let's face it, these teams have struggled and we've got to take advantage of that.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Drew StantonSep 17 09:45p

Arizona Cardinals QB Drew Stanton is in line to start his second straight game against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 3 with QB Carson Palmer (shoulder) sidelined. It [ More ]

John AbrahamSep 17 09:13p

Arizona Cardinals LB John Abraham (concussion), LB Alex Okafor (thigh) and DE Frostee Rucker (calf) each did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. LB Larry Foote (shoulder) and P Dave [ More ]

Andre EllingtonSep 17 09:13p

Arizona Cardinals RB Andre Ellington (foot) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

B. Green-EllisSep 17 08:03p

Several clubs have reportedly reached out to free-agent RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis (Bengals), who is still in the process of rehab after suffering a hip injury in the preseason.

Jonathan DwyerSep 17 08:03p

Arizona Cardinals RB Jonathan Dwyer has been deactivated from all team activities Wednesday, Sept. 17. The team was made aware of allegations by the Phoenix police and are cooperating [ More ]

Marshawn LynchSep 17 07:53p

Seattle Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch (back) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Vernon DavisSep 17 07:43p

San Francisco 49ers TE Vernon Davis (ankle) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17, and he is still on crutches.

Justin SmithSep 17 07:43p

San Francisco 49ers CB Tramaine Brock (toe), OT Anthony Davis (hamstring), C Marcus Martin (knee), TE Vance McDonald (knee) and DT Justin Smith (non-injury related) did not practice Wednesday, [ More ]

Terrell ManningSep 17 07:33p

Miami Dolphins LB Terrell Manning was released Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Dion LewisSep 17 07:23p

Arizona Cardinals P Drew Butler, Chicago Bears RB Shaun Draughn and WR Chris X. Williams, Houston Texans LB Jason Ankrah, Indianapolis Colts RB Dion Lewis, Jacksonville Jaguars OT Cameron [ More ]

Jonathan DwyerSep 17 07:03p

Arizona Cardinals RB Jonathan Dwyer is being questioned for a domestic violence incident, according to sources. However, he hasn't been arrested, and his status remains unchanged.

Kelvin BenjaminSep 17 07:03p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin (knee) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Dwan EdwardsSep 17 06:53p

Carolina Panthers OT Byron Bell (toe), WR Philly Brown (ankle), OT Nate Chandler (toe), LB Thomas Davis (hip), DT Dwan Edwards (back), RB Mike Tolbert (chest), RB Fozzy Whittaker [ More ]

DeAngelo WilliamsSep 17 06:53p

Carolina Panthers RB DeAngelo Williams (thigh) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Shane VereenSep 17 06:43p

New England Patriots RB Shane Vereen (shoulder) has been added to this week's injury report, and he was limited in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Julian EdelmanSep 17 06:43p

New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman (back) was added to the injury report and was limited in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Alfonzo DennardSep 17 06:43p

New England Patriots S Don Jones (hamstring) and LB Jerod Mayo (non-injury) didn't practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. DE Michael Buchanan (ankle), LB Jamie Collins (thigh), OG Dan Connolly (knee), [ More ]

Mike PounceySep 17 06:23p

Miami Dolphins DE Terrence Fede (knee), LB Koa Misi (ankle) and OG Shelley Smith (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. OT Branden Albert (shoulder), S Louis Delmas (calf), [ More ]

Ryan CladySep 17 06:13p

Denver Broncos DT Marvin Austin (non-injury), LB Lerentee McCray (knee) and LB Danny Trevathan (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. S David Bruton (shoulder) and OG Ben Garland [ More ]

Cyrus GraySep 17 06:03p

Kansas City Chiefs DB Husain Abdullah (foot, quadriceps), RB Cyrus Gray (foot), WR Frankie Hammond (shoulder), WR Junior Hemingway (hip), OL Eric Kush (shoulder), LB Josh Martin (quadriceps, triceps) [ More ]

M. Jones-DrewSep 17 06:03p

Oakland Raiders RB Maurice Jones-Drew (hand) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Matt McCantsSep 17 06:03p

Oakland Raiders LB Sio Moore (ankle), CB Carlos Rogers (knee), WR Rod Streater (hip) and DE Justin Tuck (illness) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. CB Chimdi Chekwa (knee), [ More ]

Anthony SpencerSep 17 05:53p

Dallas Cowboys DT Davon Coleman (knee), LB Justin Durant (groin), LB Rolando McClain (groin) and RB Joseph Randle (concussion) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. DT Ken Bishop (illness), [ More ]

Montell OwensSep 17 05:53p

Detroit Lions DE Ezekiel Ansah (knee), LB Travis Lewis (quadriceps) and OT LaAdrian Waddle (calf) all did not participate in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. DT Nick Fairley (biceps), SS [ More ]

Brad JonesSep 17 05:43p

Green Bay Packers OT Bryan Bulaga (knee) and DB Micah Hyde (knee) both were limited in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. CB Casey Hayward (glute) and LB Brad Jones (quadriceps) [ More ]

Shaun HillSep 17 05:43p

St. Louis Rams QB Shaun Hill (thigh) was limited in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Scott WellsSep 17 05:43p

St. Louis Rams CB Trumaine Johnson (knee), C Barrett Jones (back), TE Cory Harkey (knee) and C Scott Wells (non-injury) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. CB Brandon McGee (foot) was limited.

Tavon AustinSep 17 05:43p

St. Louis Rams WR Tavon Austin (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

Kirk CousinsSep 17 05:23p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) could return around eight weeks after head coach Jon Gruden said Griffin will be in a cast for the next 10 days. [ More ]

Johnathan JosephSep 17 05:23p

Houston Texans LB Jadeveon Clowney (knee) and S Shiloh Keo (calf) did not practice Wednesday, Sept. 17. TE C.J. Fiedorowicz (foot), OG Ben Jones (ankle, knee), CB Johnathan Joseph [ More ]

Adrian PetersonSep 17 05:23p

The Minnesota Vikings intend to bring RB Adrian Peterson back after his legal issues are resolved.

Arian FosterSep 17 05:23p

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (hamstring) was limited in practice Wednesday, Sept. 17.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group