As the losing streak is pushed to seven, is there any hope left for the struggling Arizona Cardinals? With a new quarterback (or two) in tow, the Red Birds look to get back on the winning track as the equally struggling Denver Broncos ride into town with a fresh coach and a positive outlook. Can the Cardinals rediscover their winning ways or will the Broncos live up to the trend and steamroll the home team in their own building? Let's take a look.
Arizona Cardinals +5.5 vs. Denver Broncos
Curious at how bad the Cardinals' situation has become? That Vegas line says it all. They are almost six point underdogs, at home, against a 3-9 team, which just fired their coach, and has lost 16 of their past 22 games.
That sentence is beyond outrageous.
But that's not the end of it. The Cardinals starting quarterback will either be John Skelton -- a rookie fifth-round draft pick out of Fordham with six career NFL pass attempts -- or newly-signed Richard Bartel -- an undrafted free agent out of Tarleton State, with zero career NFL pass attempts, who, as recently as a week ago, was serving as Dante Culpepper's backup on the UFL's 4-4 Sacramento Mountain Lions.
We are reaching critical mass on the ridiculous scale.
At this point, I really don't think it matters who the Red Birds play. They would lose to the Oregon Ducks. The offense hasn't scored a relevant touchdown since November 14 and the defense is ranked dead last in the league. Sure, the Broncos may have their own problems, but they've got nothing on the Cardinals.
To make matters worse (or better, depending on how you look at it), somehow the Broncos are the only team in the NFL that the Cardinals have never, ever defeated. In eight matchups against Denver, Arizona is 0-7-1. Incompetence on a historical level.
Regardless of which quarterback starts the game, I have a feeling we are going to see both of them before the day is over.
To make matters worse, the Denver offense isn't nearly as imbalanced as was earlier in the season. Kyle Orton is still slinging it at a record level -- to great benefit to the NFL's surprise leading receiver, Brandon Lloyd -- but the Broncos seem to have also rediscovered running back Knowshon Moreno. Over his past four games, the former-Georgia standout has accounted for 569 total yards and three touchdowns.
The Arizona defense will crumble again, yielding a career day to the Orton-Lloyd-Moreno trifecta, while the offense likely struggles to even secure a single first down. Ah, you Cardinals, how predictable you have become.
Intern Prediction: Broncos 38, Cardinals 10
Last week's record: 1-0
Total record: 19-10