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Ola Nola (AZ/NO Pre-Game Tidbits) “There is a house in New Orleans Womens Chandler Jones Jersey , they call the Rising Sun...”Will the Cardinals game with the Saints tonight be the “ruin of many poor boys” or the fresh onset of a new, sunny day?Over the years the Super Dome has been a dark cavern of doom for the Cardinals, particularly in the divisional round of the playoffs on January 16, 2010 when the Saints put a literal 45-14 pounding on the defending NFC champs.It was the game that closed out the career of QB Kurt Warner, who, after throwing an interception trying to rally the Cardinals back from a 28-14 deficit, was on the wrong end of a bone crushing blindside block by DE Charles Grant, one of defensive coordinator Gregg Williams’ designated bounty hunters.This hit forced Warner out of the game in the 2nd quarter, who was replaced by Matt Leinart.The Saints, behind QB Drew Brees, would go on to beat the Vikings in overtime in the NFC Championship and then post an impressive 31-17 Super Bowl XLIV win over the Colts and QB Peyton Manning.Here it is eight years later—-and Drew Brees is still performing his magic in New Orleans. While he did not play in the Saints’ first pre-season game, a come from behind 24-20 win over the Jags in Jacksonville, Brees is scheduled to play tonight.Brees is backed up by ex-Texan Tom Savage, whose best game last year was against the Cardinals in November. But it was two big sacks late in the game (one a strip sack) and the spirited play of #3 dual-threat QB Tayson Hill that gave the Saints the 24-20 win. Hill is adept at running read options and various other RPOs. Here is a good look if you want to see:https://www.neworleanssaints.com/video/saints-vs-jaguars-highlights-preseason-week-1For the Cardinals Authentic D.J. Humphries Jersey , this trip to New Orleans is a homecoming of sorts for CB Patrick Peterson (LSU), WR Chad Williams (Madison Prep H.S., Baton Rouge), WR Jaylen Tolliver (Rayville, LA), G Josh Allen (Lousiiana-Monroe), RB Sherman Badie (Tulane), DE Vontarrious Dora (LouisianaTech) and newly re-signed CB Harlan Miller (Kentworth H.S., LA). Chances are that the Cardinals’ Alabama natives, WR J.J. Nelson (Midfield, AL, UAB), Andre Smith (Huffman H.S. AL, Alabama) Womens Mason Cole Jersey , CB Chris Campbell (Phenix City, AL), Korey Cunningham (Monticello, AL) and S Rudy Ford ( New Hope, AL, Auburn) will have a number of family and friends in attendance.Of the aforementioned Cardinals with local ties to Louisiana and Alabama, it would be auspicious to see WR Chad Williams, after a tough week in practice and no receptions in game one, emerge as one of the brightest lights on the roster. It will be interesting to see if Jaylen Tolliver can build on his biy 47 yard catch last week—-if G Josh Allen can continue to make his case for a roster spot—-if RB Sherman Badie can make a splash (Green Wave style) this week in the 4th quarter—-if Vontarrious Dora can notch his first sack of the pre-season—-and if S Rudy Ford can continue his swift rise up the depth chart.But the biggest question of the night is whether the Cardinals, with Sam Bradford and Josh Rosen taking the first half snaps behind the first string offensive line, can unveil a more diversified and productive passing game. One of the points of emphasis in practice this week was converting third downs, after going 0-11 in that category versus the Chargers. On the other side of the ball, the Cardinals will face a formidable test from Drew Brees and his plethora of playmakers, most notably star RB Alvin Kamara Womens Patrick Peterson Jersey , solid RB Mark Ingram and stud WR Michael Thomas.On special teams, if there is one Saint the Cardinals would like to put a licking on, it’s Ted Ginn Jr. The Cardinals fared well on special teams last week, featuring Christian Kirk, who appears to be the most talented and promising punt returner since young Patrick Peterson. How well will the special teams perform in their first road test?Will this game be a “Big Easy” for the Saints—-or a “Delta Dawn” for the Cardinals?Cardinals Notes: Wednesday 9/26 As awful as Mike McCoy’s play call on 3rd and 2 was—-the 4th down call was equally ill-advised. To ask any QB to throw a 10 yard out pass to the slot WR from the far hashmarks in man coverage at that point in the game is never a good or smart idea. For one, slot WRs are going to be closely covered because the defense will not want to give up a quick slant. It’s another thing if they run it as a rub route with a legal pick involved, but even then there are so many safer, smarter options. Lastly, the 10 yard out pass from the far hashmark—-to have any chance—-has to be a timing pass—-meaning the QB has to throw the ball seconds before the WR makes his break. Those throws are typically very difficult because the QB is throwing to a spot without the advantage of a visible target or seeing his WR open.To recap—-with the game on the line, McCoy calls two angular (east/west) plays that require picture perfect timing, while eschewing north/south options. As they say in basic mathematics, the shortest distance between two points is a straight line—-a principle that Tom Brady and the Patriots have mastered in high pressure spots for decades.Here’s where it hurts to be a Cardinals’ fan—-how many of you were thinking that Rosen would get the team in FG position and have the stadium jumping for joy and then Phil Dawson would promptly miss the FG? Shades of the Patriots game in 2016—-which BA claimed took the mojo out of the team for the rest of the season. Hmmm. And the Cardinals have never been the same since, have they? Part of the reason—-Amos Jones.Would it be fair at this point to say that Mike McCoy has already become the Amos Jones of this year’s team? Now that there isn’t any croneyism involved, would the Cardinals be decisive enough to move on from McCoy if his poorly conceived play calling and improper use of personnel persist?On the bright side—-in addition to Patrick Peterson’s inspired play—-the Cardinals are getting impressive performances from DT Robert Nkemdiche Authentic Justin Pugh Jersey , DT Corey Peters, LB Josh Bynes, DE Benson Mayowa and S Budda Baker. Plus, DE Chandler Jones is beginning to find his mojo in this defense. Once the coaches can get FS Tre Boston to settle down and find the right players at RCB (Bene Benwikere?) and WILB (Joe Walker?), this defense could become dynamic.A key player in getting the defense to the elite level is DT Olsen Pierre—-because once the Cardinals add a consistently aggressive interior pass rush—-look out. To that end, the Cardinals claimed a rush DT Ifeadi Odenigbo who could make a splash in the nickel. Getting strong QB pressures from their 4 man line will enable the coaches to add more double coverages in the secondary, which could lead to more takeaways.ILB Gerald Hodges has been an upgrade over Deone Bucannon, but recent addition Joe Walker from the Eagles could soon be the next man up if Hodges continues his inconsistent play. That—-or they could turn to Zeke Turner if and when they feel he’s ready. Tackling is Steve Wilks’ main focus—-that and multiple players getting to the ball on a dime. Hodges has flashed—-but not often enough yet.The team needs T.J. Logan back—-on STs as the kickoff returner and in the offense as a key speed threat. Will we finally see David Johnson in the slot this week? Running in and out of motion? That sure would get any defense’s attention. Could Josh Rosen win his first start? If Mike McCoy goes with a couple packages of plays that Josh is most comfortable running—-AND—-McCoy gets Rosen and the offense to play with greater alacrity and urgency in the hurry-up—-I give him a 50/50 chance. What do you say? One of the main reasons why Rosen could succeedright off the bat is WR Christian Kirk who is looking like a combination of Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin. Once Kirk adds a package of double moves to his game, he now has a QB who will use his feet to buy that extra second for separation. Curious too to see what kind of chemistry Josh Rosen develops with WR Larry Fitzgerald. The one bread and butter route that McCoy hasn't been calling for Larry—-#11’s patented fade route versus press coverage. That’s a ball that Rosen can throw with the best of them. High point city!
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