Arizona Cardinals’ 5 Biggest Breakout Candidates of 2014

The Arizona Cardinals' 5 Biggest Breakout Candidates of 2014

Cardinal dancing
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NFC West will be a monstrous gauntlet for any one of its teams to emerge as the top dog. Members from the division have made it to the Super Bowl in each of the last two seasons.
The Seattle Seahawks and the San Francisco 49ers received most of the buzz for the division last year, but the Arizona Cardinals finished the year 10-6. This season the Cards won't surprise anyone and need these players to have breakout years.

5. Kevin Minter

Kevin Minter talks
Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

5. Kevin Minter

Kevin Minter talks
Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

The Cardinals' defense was not a problem last year. It was the best-run defense in the NFL, but as the team transitions Kevin Minter into the linebacking corps, it will only improve. As a rookie, he had only four tackles, but his athleticism and explosiveness will show in his second year.

4. Antonio Cromartie

Antonio Cromartie catch
Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

4. Antonio Cromartie

Antonio Cromartie catch
Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

There isn’t a player alive who would like to be the second option. Ironically, Cromartie excels in the off-corner position and is best served as a team’s second corner. He didn’t fare well when he had the lead position in New York. Playing off of Patrick Peterson will spark Cromartie’s declining career. He should be able to outplay most teams' No. 2 receivers with ease.

3. Ted Ginn

Ted Ginn jump
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

3. Ted Ginn

Ted Ginn jump
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Honestly, it’s hard to tell whether the speedster Ted Ginn will be productive as a receiver or return guy—or either for that matter. His big play ability makes him a sensational threat, but it also means he may not be consistent. His opportunities should be greater at wideout because of Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd.

2. Rob Housler

Rob Housler run
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

2. Rob Housler

Rob Housler run
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Although no one knows who he is, Rob Housler was a pleasant surprise for the Cards last year. His production spiked at the end of the season, and he had 78 yards on five receptions against the Niners in the last game of the season. As he gets more familiar with the offense, his lone touchdown catch should be a more common occurrence in 2014.

1. Carson Palmer

Carson Palmer throw
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

1. Carson Palmer

Carson Palmer throw
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I bet you didn’t’ know that Carson Palmer threw for more than 4,000 yards last year. He isn’t as horrible as people make him out to because of his years in Oakland and his last year in Cincinnati. Palmer still has a great deep ball and can make plenty big time throws. He has the weapons this year, and there is a possibility that he could be a second coming of Kurt Warner.

DeMario Phipps-Smith is the writer of mid-major NCAA basketball content for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @demariopsmith or add him to your network on Google.


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