NFL Week 10 – 1st-Place Cards vs Re-focused Rams in NFC West Duel
John BensonNo comments
If someone had told me before the season started that, at the mid-way marker, the Arizona Cardinals would lead the NFC West and have the best record in the NFL, I would have had them institutionalized. It turns out I would have been Madeleine Stowe in 12 Monkeys – the first part, anyway.
After waltzing over the Romo-less Cowboys last weekend (and covering as four-point dogs), the Cardinals (7-1, 4-0 home) are, officially, no longer the surprise team in the NFL. Quarterback Carson Palmer has been rejuvenated after an injury, while the Cardinals defense – which sits fifth in the league, allowing only 19.5 PPG – continues to perform at a high level.
At this point, Arizona head coach Bruce Arians has to keep his team from getting ahead of itself with talk about the playoffs (and more).
Cardinals defensive tackle Dan Williams said, “Coaches remind you it can go down real fast.”
That said, the Cardinals, who are on a four-game winning streak, do not lack for confidence.
Arians said, “I don’t see any cockiness in our football team. I see a true belief we’re going to win every week.”
Naturally, that includes this weekend’s match-up against division foe St. Louis (3-5, 2-2 away). Two weeks ago, some people may have already chalked this game up as a win on the Arizona schedule. However, last weekend, the Rams upset a talented (if misfiring) 49ers squad on its home turf. Granted, it wasn’t pretty, but pretty isn’t a column in the standings. Rams quarterback Austin Davis said, “It doesn’t matter how you do it, or what it looks like. It just matters what the score is at the end. I think guys did a great job of staying focused on what we had to do.”
Davis will have to heed his own words and stay focused on Sunday, as he’s facing a ball-hawking Cardinals secondary that leads the league with 12 interceptions. The likes of Antonio Cromartie and Jerraud Powers will punish any ill-advised throws from the former Southern Miss walk-on.
With the Cardinals perfect at home and Palmer looking better every week, take Arizona and lay the points (-7).