Arizona Cardinals: Reasons Why They Are Rising in the NFC
The Arizona Cardinals have been one of the most fun teams to watch in 2020. One of the problems is that they play in the best division in football in the NFC West.
Arizona is 4-2 to start the 2020 season. They are currently tied for second place in the NFC West with the Los Angeles Rams (4-2). The Seattle Seahawks are currently in first place with a 5-0 record. The San Francisco 49ers (3-3) are in last place in the NFC West, but they are still one of the better teams in the NFL.
San Francisco lost to the Cardinals in Week 1 and Arizona will have a big game at State Farm Stadium in Scottsdale, Arizona, this Sunday at 4:05 p.m. Eastern on FOX against the Seattle Seahawks.
One of the reasons why they are so good is because of the offensive weapons they possess. Kyler Murray, Kenyan Drake, Chase Edmonds, DeAndre Hopkins, Larry Fitzgerald, Christian Kirk, and Dan Arnold are some of the key players on offense.
Murray is the heartbeat and the heart and soul of this football team though nonetheless. He is one of the most explosive players in the NFL though nonetheless.
Kyler Murray decided not to play baseball for the Oakland Athletics after being drafted eighth overall by them in the MLB Draft a few years ago though.
He has completed 135-of-205 passes (65.9 completion percentage) for 1,487 passing yards 10 touchdowns and six interceptions. Murray has also rushed for 370 yards on 51 carries and six touchdowns.
Talent on Offense
Kenyan Drake has also rushed for 478 yards on 105 carries and four touchdowns. He has also caught six passes for 22 yards receiving.
Chase Edmonds has rushed for 118 yards on 24 carries and one touchdown. He has also caught 19 passes for 135 yards receiving and two touchdowns.
DeAndre Hopkins has caught 47 passes for 601 yards and two touchdowns.
Christian Kirk has only caught 13 passes so far this season for 240 yards and three touchdowns. He played extremely well in a 38-10 win on the road on Monday night football against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Larry Fitzgerald has caught 21 passes for 145 yards receiving so far this season. He has been with this team for a very long time though.
Andy Isabella, Darrell Daniels, and KeeSean Johnson are some of the other offensive weapons on this football team that has seen the field so far this season though.
On the defensive side of the ball, they lost Chandler Jones for the season. General Manager Steve Kelm drafted Isaiah Simmons eighth overall from the University of Clemson in the 2020 NFL Draft.
If the season ended today, Kliff Kingsbury’s bunch would be the sixth seed in the NFC and they would face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-2). That would be a horrible matchup for Arizona at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay, Florida.
Luckily enough, there is a lot of season left. This team went 5-11 last season and they only need one more win to tie last year’s victory mark though.
Before Kliff Kingsbury arrived, he struggled to win games at Texas Tech University though. Also, they had Steve Wilks as the head coach and Josh Rosen as the quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals in 2018 and they went 3-13 and it didn’t work out well for them though.
That was the best move this franchise made and it is going to be a good franchise and a good team for a while. They have not made it to the playoffs since 2015 when they went 13-3 and went to the NFC Championship Game and lost to the Carolina Panthers though.
The Bottom Line
Arizona is currently in a four-year playoff drought and they hope that will be snapped this season. It could be possible that all four of these teams could make it to the playoffs this season, but it may be tough to do so though.
This may be their best team since going to the NFC Championship Game, but they have not been to the Super Bowl since the 2008 regular season and the 2009 postseason. Arizona lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers and it may have been the greatest Super Bowl XLIII ever though.
What do you think of the rise of the Arizona Cardinals though? Leave a comment below.
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Follow Glenn Kaplan on Twitter @glennkaplan13.