Cardinals vs. Patriots: Preview of the Week 2 NFL Match-up
Sunday 1:00 pm ET, FOX, Gillette Stadium
Sunny, High – 67 Low – 47, mild winds
The Arizona Cardinals are coming off an exciting late win over the Seattle Seahawks, a game which saw them lose their starting quarterback to an injury while the replacement threw the go-ahead touchdown. If you only saw that first line, you would think nothing more of it, but the fact that it was the Cardinals and their wacky quarterback situation, it adds an element of irony to it.
Was last Sunday the first step in a redemption campaign for Kevin Kolb, or just a lucky set of circumstances? Kolb has lost his starting job to John Skelton, twice, and will now get the start against the New England Patriots in Week 2. If he has a solid performance, don’t be surprised to see Kolb remain the starter even if Skelton comes back.
Kolb has had a tumultuous 12 months. He was pegged as the replacement to Kurt Warner when the Cardinals traded Dominique Rogers-Cromartie and a second round pick to acquire Kolb from the Philadelphia Eagles. The Cardinals gave him a huge contract despite not having a huge sample size of games.
His first season was rocky to say the least, as he battled injuries and poor play. The Cardinals flirted with the idea of Peyton Manning before settling in with Kolb as their guy. However, poor play in the preseason vaulted Skelton back to QB1 (where my Friday Night Lights fans at?) and Kolb was relegated to the bench.
Skelton sprained his ankle in the win over the Seahawks and has not practiced this week, but Ken Whisenhunt will not say who is their starter for the game.
“We’ve still got some days,” Whisenhunt said. “John’s continuing to improve. We were lucky that it was a low ankle sprain and he’s getting better. So we’ll see how it goes as the week progresses.”
The only way I see the Cardinals hanging around this game is if they can get their offense clicking and keep up with the Patriots’ high scoring attack. The Patriots were 31st in the NFL against the pass in 2011, but looked solid against the Tennessee Titans in Week 1. Larry Fitzgerald, Early Doucet and Michael Floyd have to step their games up if the Cardinals are going to be competitive.
Other than Skelton, some players who have been limited in practice this week are Jamell Fleming (both Wed and Thur), Patrick Peterson (Thur) and Adrian Wilson (both Wed and Thur).