We got our first look at the 2012-2013 version of the Arizona Cardinals -- kind of. Defensive lineman Darnell Dockett and safety Adrian Wilson didn't play on defense and the offense was without running backs Beanie Wells and Ryan Williams. This was the first of a long preseason for the Cards with five games. It's unfair to make definitive statements about anything at this point, but it also doesn't mean it should get completely ignored. Here are five positives and negatives from the Cardinals 17-10 loss against the New Orleans Saints.
- It's not crazy to say Stewart Bradley played his best game in a Cardinals uniform. Plus on his sack he kinda did the Carlton dance from Fresh Prince so that's big time bonus points in my non existent point system.
- We already knew this, but LaRod Stephens-Howling is a football player. Last year he had 43 carries and 13 receptions in 14 games. I would love to see him get more towards 125-150 touches this season not including special teams.
- John Skelton was better than Kevin Kolb. I like how Skelton handles himself in the pocket. Besides the arm and size this is one of the biggest differences between him and Kolb.
- Second year tight end Rob Housler showed some flashes of what he can do with 3 catches and 41 yards. Richard Bartel also missed him on a potential touchdown when he beat his man on a nice out and up route.
- Rookie safety Justin Bethel has the potential to make an impact on special teams. This is always good to get from late round draft picks because it allows them time to develop and not waste a roster spot. A player who contributes in a positive way no matter what the fashion always helps.
- There is no way to spin it; Kevin Kolb did not have a good night. Yes he was under a pressure on his interception, but as Mike Mayock showed on the NFL Network telecast it was a terrible decision and read. Kolb also got banged up again. The offensive line didn't help either.
- The first team defense got shredded by the Saints first team offense. On the first drive the Cards allowed 33 rushing yards and allowed short throws to be turned into longer plays because of poor tackling. It was a sloppy opening against a world class quarterback, which always makes things more difficult.
- Newly signed offensive guard Adam Snyder had issues in pass protection. On the Kolb interception he got beat by Sedrick Ellis (it is possible that Anthony Sherman missed an assignment to chip, but no way of me knowing that). When Kolb was pushed out of the pocked on 3rd and 12 during the second drive it looked like it was because Snyder got demolished by Cameron Jordan.
- This isn't a full negative, but Andre Roberts should be in the slot not on the outside. Michael Floyd needs to make his presence felt and earn the position opposite Larry Fitzgerald. Perfect example of why is when Kolb was still in he threw a back shoulder throw to Roberts, who didn't adjust properly. It wasn't an easy play for Roberts, but those are the type of throws Floyd is built for.
- Chase Daniel and Drew Brees combine to complete 19 of 25 passes. I would guess partially because the secondary needs more time to gel and they just aren't showing very much to confuse the opposing quarterbacks.
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