And How The Seahawks Will Stop Them
Today we continue our look at the Seattle Seahawks’ NFC West rivals by looking at the Arizona Cardinals, and their 5 best offensive players.
Arizona was shaky at Quarterback last year with Kurt Warner retiring, and the team throwing big money at Kevin Kolb to be their starter. Kolb was often injured, and prone to making mistakes on the field.
Backup Quarterback John Skelton didn’t look much better out there, but he did manage to get some wins under his belt. Those two players don’t make the list, but one wonders just how much better this team would be on offense if they could just solve the QB position.
Let’s see who DOES make the list of Arizona Cardinals weapons.
1. Larry Fitzgerald
Larry Fitzgerald. Arizona’s top offensive player. Full stop. No arguing there. The 6 time Pro-Bowl, 4 time All-Pro player would be the number #1 offensive player on most teams.
He is arguably the best player on offense in the entire NFC West Division, and his 73 touchdowns since 2004 tells you that he is tough to stop.
You have no choice but to put two guys on him, and you still see Larry catching the ball a lot of times over two defenders. The Seahawks need to try to bracket him and keep him from taking over a game.
2. Beanie Wells
If the air attack is lead by Larry Fitzgerald, the ground game for the Arizona Cardinals is headed by Beanie Wells. The young running back was a bit inconsistent his first year in the league, but has really turned into a physical, imposing back for the Cardinals.
Last year, Wells set a Cardinals single game rushing record by running for 228 yards against the St. Louis Rams.
He is tough to bring down, but look for Red Bryant to try to clog up the middle to limit his runs up the gut and try to push Beanie to the outside for the Linebackers to take him down.
3. Todd Heap
Most Seahawks fans’ lasting memory is of Arizona Cardinals’ Tight End Todd Heap getting hammered last year by Seattle Safety Kam Chancellor after an Earl Thomas interception, but don’t sleep on Heap, who was one of the Baltimore Ravens’ best players on offense in his time with the team.
He may think twice when he sees Chancellor come up in coverage though…
4. Michael Floyd
It may be hard to justify a rookie’s spot in the top 5 of a team’s offensive weapons, especially since he hasn’t even hit the field yet, but the 13th overall pick in last year’s NFL draft should have a good season for the Cardinals.
With the Seahawks doubling Fitzgerald, the talented young Receiver Floyd should get a lot of looks working against single coverage.
He had 37 touchdowns in 4 years of college, and will have to beat Sherman or Browner, who will surely be physical with the rookie off the line as they welcome him to the league.
5. Ryan Williams
With Beanie Wells getting much of the load, look for Williams to see a lot of action as a change-of-pace type of running back.
He was injured all of last season, but if he comes back at full health, which he should, the ‘Hawks will find a very game and elusive runner.
He looks the part of an NFL running back, and showed flashes in pre-season last year. The ‘Hawks should be able to bottle him up with their stout run defense.