The Arizona Cardinals are 1-2. That’s a far cry from where the many prognosticators who had them in the Super Bowl were expecting them to be three weeks into the season.
And after Sunday’s humiliating, 33-18 loss against the Buffalo Bills, the Cardinals must face the harsh reality that something isn’t right.
‘Be honest and identify problems’
“The biggest thing is be honest and identify problems, whether it be in preparation or playing, and find a positive solution,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians told Alex Marvez and Bill Polian on Late Hits. “Don’t bury your head in the sand and say, ‘Everything’s going to be alright Wednesday when I show up for work,’ if you didn’t do anything about it on Monday and Tuesday. So the emphasis on Monday was to look at the film (and say), ‘Why did you play this way? And let’s correct it. Let’s make a very positive experience out of this. There was obviously a negative situation, but let’s make a positive out of this so it doesn’t happen again.'”
Arians points out that it’s time for team leaders to assert themselves. It’s also time for younger players to respond to the leadership.
‘Get out of old habits, get in with the Cardinal Way’
“We have some really, really good leaders,” Arians said. “But to be a good leader, the others have to follow you. We’ve got a lot of young guys. We have some new faces that are doing their own thing and not following the example set by these guys. And it’s a two-way street. They can only lead you to water, but you’ve got to drink it.
“And some of these young guys have got to get out of old habits and get in with the Cardinal Way.”
Kirwan: Saints should consider drafting Brees’ replacement in 2017
At 0-3, the New Orleans Saints could very well be headed for a top-three draft pick next year.
If that’s the case, Pat Kirwan thinks the Saints should target the eventual replacement for quarterback Drew Brees.
‘If there’s an elite quarterback, you can’t afford to pass on that guy’
“Let’s say they’re in the top three picks and there’s an elite quarterback,” Kirwan told co-host Jim Miller on Movin’ The Chains. “Look at the contract with Drew. You can get out from under it in a couple of years. When you’re going third and there’s an elite quarterback, I don’t think they can afford to pass on that guy. I think they have to take the quarterback, plop him behind Drew.
‘You may never get another shot at it’
“Everyone will be telling the world they need a pass rusher. The point is, no one’s going to want to hear that. They’re going to (say), ‘Oh, Drew’s our guy.’ But … you pass on that quarterback, you may never get another shot at it.
“I’m not saying they’re in line with it, but if they are, that’s going to be an interesting discussion next offseason where you put him behind Drew for a year and then make the transition in 2018.”
Pederson: Wentz ‘has a good group of coaches around him’
Doug Pederson sees tangible reasons why his rookie quarterback, Carson Wentz, is off to such a strong start.
From his focused preparation to his improvisational skills, Wentz has what it takes to have sustainable success, Philadelphia Eagles coach Doug Pederson told Brett Favre on the SiriusXM Blitz.
‘Kid is unbelievable as far as the way he prepares’
“Gosh, this kid is unbelievable as far as the way he prepares each week,” Pederson said. “He’s in here so early watching the tape. He’s putting himself in good situations. And, then, obviously, (offensive coordinator) Frank Reich is here. He played in the NFL for a long time. Of course, myself and then (quarterbacks coach John) DeFilippo played quarterback in college. So he’s got a good group of coaches that are around him, that have played at this level, to really sort of break him in and really teach him.
“Playing this game, there’s really so much that pulls on your time and is demanding of your time. And I keep using the phrase, ‘Keep the main thing the main thing,’ and that’s ultimately just the game of football. He’s done an outstanding job. He’s a great kid, he’s a humble kid. Nothing’s too big for him. And we’re just so excited to be where we are and to see him play and play at a high level these first couple weeks.”
Pederson, Favre’s backup quarterback in Green Bay, sees a lot of the Hall-of-Fame Packer in Wentz.
‘Kid has some of the same instincts’ as Favre
“Brett, watching you play and being with you for eight years in Green Bay, this kid has some of the same instincts — and I’ve said this to people — that you had,” Pederson said. “Eyes are always downfield, you’re looking for that big play, the home-run play, the broken play. And he’s got that in him and that’s something that’s very special. And you can’t teach that. That’s an instinct that a lot of people don’t have and we’re fortunate that our guy has it.”