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NFL Arizona Cardinals

5 Arizona Cardinals Facing Make-or-Break Seasons in 2014

5 Arizona Cardinals Facing Make-or-Break Seasons in 2014

Carson Palmer
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The Arizona Cardinals used a great defense and an opportunistic offense to get themselves within one game of the playoffs, and they showed that they deserve to be watched in 2014. They have a few players who really need to step it up this season if they are going to take the next step. Some of these players are playing for their careers. These five are going to have make-or-break seasons this year.

5. Andre Ellington

Andre Ellington
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5. Andre Ellington

Andre Ellington
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The running back position is something the Cardinals have not been able to figure out since the early 1990s. It seems like every big name that went to Arizona had a very limited shelf life. Emmitt Smith, Rashard Mendenhall, Edgerrin James -- all of them played well for a little while, but then they flamed out. Andre Ellington is looking to solidify his No. 1 status. Will he avoid the Cards' curse on RBs?

4. Jay Feely

Jay Feely
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4. Jay Feely

Jay Feely
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Jay Feely is just another aging kicker who is trying to hold onto his career. The 37-year-old knows how easy it can be to replace a kicker. The teams don't even need to waste a draft pick on the position. This will be a make-or-break season for Feely if he wants to continue his career.

3. Antonio Cromartie

Antonio Cromartie
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3. Antonio Cromartie

Antonio Cromartie
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Antonio Cromartie comes over from the Jets after a forgettable season. He is going to have to see a lot of balls come his way with Patrick Peterson on the other side. He needs to show that he can still play at an elite level if the Cards are going to have the same defense they had a year ago.

2. Carson Palmer

Carson Palmer
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2. Carson Palmer

Carson Palmer
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Carson Palmer has struggled to find his game since he was traded by the Cincinnati Bengals. He looks to have a much better year after having a season to get accustomed to Bruce Arians' offense. Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd are a great one-two punch, and Palmer needs to show he can be the guy to help them go forward while they are still in their primes (Fitzgerald mostly).

1. Tyrann Mathieu

Tyrann Mathieu
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1. Tyrann Mathieu

Tyrann Mathieu
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Tyrann Mathieu surprised in his rookie season with the Cardinals, as he was a main cog in a great defense. He ended up missing the end of the season with a knee injury. There will be a lot of people seeing if he can come back from injury and keep the same level of play in his sophomore season.