On paper, the Arizona Cardinals are a good football team. They have receivers that can make plays, a defense that can win games without much offensive production, but one thing continues to hold the team back in the post-Kurt Warner era. Quarterback play.
When the Cardinals brought in Carson Palmer, it looked like a good move. For the first time in a long time, Palmer would have receivers to work with that could actually make plays, and Arizona’s defense was already built and ready to go.
The Cardinals, in their haste to bring in a competent quarterback, made the wrong decision. Carson Palmer is a full-blown gun slinger, and that works with some teams, but that’s not the style of quarterback the Cardinals need at this junction. Sure, it they had their backs against the wall with no way out, a gunslinger would probably give them the best chance at winning games, but that’s not where the Cardinals are.
Instead, Arizona needs sound decision making from a player that can manage a game. That doesn’t mean the team needs a true “game manager” either. With as many weapons as the Cardinals possess on offense, it makes sense to take some shots down the field, but Palmer crosses the line of taking shots and strolls into the reckless zone.
The Cardinals aren’t dead just yet, but they have to make a complete turnaround on offense to give themselves an opportunity to sneak into the postseason. At this point, it appears their aspirations of winning a division title are out the window. The Cardinals aren’t being beaten by the teams around them, they’re beating themselves. As much of a cliché as it really is, this team can beat anyone if they stay out of their own way, but in the NFL, that’s half the battle.
Carson Palmer’s welcome is wearing very thin in Arizona after giving another game away, this time to the Seattle Seahawks. Palmer may be a gunslinger, but if he can tone it down a little, this team could be a tough out in the postseason for anyone. The problem is, at this rate, the Cardinals won’t be getting to the postseason anytime soon.