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The game tonight could be exciting. The two teams have similarities - both have strong defense - and share a weakness: Offensive lines. Both have quarterbacks trying to find their ways, though one is just a few missteps away from the quarterback controversy that's haunted his team. These two teams have stumbling running games in common too. So what Cardinals players should Rams fans be worried about this week? Let's take a look with the help of some friends over at Revenge of the Birds - the SBNation site for the Arizona Cardinals
I've spent parts of the last day and a half visiting with Cardinal fans over at ROTB. They believe in their team just as we believe in the Rams
. The biggest difference in the two team right now is their win-loss totals. While the Rams have clawed their way to a 2-2 record, the Cardinals
have confounded every NFL expert by starting the year at 4-0. Most are stunned, and I must admit I am too, but only to a point. In my preseason power ranking, I mention this team's defense as being one to take seriously. In fact, going back to October 2, 2011, the Cardinals have a win-loss record of 11-6, winning 9 of their last 10 games through to this week in 2012. Hmm...
I asked some of the guys over at ROTB's to give me six players to watch for tonight's game. OK, I had to pay them, but it only cost me a few copies of my book - and $50 each. They said something about the cost of living in the desert, and a "Wisdom Export Tax" they'd have to pay for giving me the answers I needed. They also charged me shipping and handling for me to send them my book? Hmm...?
First up is an offering from GreaZzy
. He's one of the front page contributing authors over at ROTB, and the expert on Export taxes. GreaZzy
was born in a mine shaft, or so I'm told. He swears to me he can see gold in an NFL player. I showed him a picture of Marshawn Lynch
wearing his new "Grill", and said I can too. You'd think his nickname would have something to do with oil slicks, slicked down hair, or car repair, right? Nope! His nickname is Kentucky. Hmm...??
Here's some of his players to watch and why:
"Daryl Washington – I can think of only one team in which Daryl Washington wouldn’t be the starting inside linebacker, and that team is mean and I don’t like them and I won’t even say their name. Washington is a do-it-all and do-it-well ILB. Pass Coverage: Check, Run Defense: Check, Pass Rushing: Check, Speed: Check, Turnover Machine: Check, All-Around Awesomeness: Discount Double Check"
"Calais Campbell & Darnell Dockett – The dynamic duo, the wonder twins, peanut butter and jelly, Tim Burton and Johnny Depp. Whatever you want to call them, when these two are both in the line-up for the Cardinals, it’ll be a rough day for most offensive lines. They excel in both run defense and pass rushing. Plus, Campbell is taller than most giraffes and is on our FG block team; CC alone has more blocks over the past few years then most teams."
Next up is Airwave
- This is an interesting guy. It's seems he is the President of the "They Are Out There" Aliens watch club. We're talking the little gray or green blokes from out beyond Neptune somewhere, though he appears to believe they've already landed here on Earth. We stopped talking about planets when he mentioned Uranus, and he got a maniacal gleam in his eyes. Hmm....???
I asked him for his Cardinals players to watch:
"I would say is Andre Roberts. He has been a very pleasant surprise this year to most, if not all, Cards fans. Thus far in the season he has 15 catches for 229 yards and 4 TD’s (and he had a 70 yard play against the Eagles that Larry got called back (FYI Larry never does this)). They call him Andre the Giant (perhaps because of his huge nose?) and he certainly has been that for us so far in 2012."
Then we have Drullin'OverDaCards
... He really does drool all over cards. They kick him out of the World Series of Poker every year because of it. He's currently suing the game of Poker - that's right, the whole game - under the American Disability Act. "Drool" told me he's suing for Eleven-dee billion dollars. I asked him what the "dee" stands for, and he told me it meant "all the money is tax free". Hmm...????
Here's a player from his list:
"Well, don't turn you back on Jay Feely on a kick off unless you want him to hit you - only kicker I know of to get a personal foul for unnecessary roughness on a kick that was downed for a touch-back. Plus, he is 7 for 7 on FGs."
The last member of my new Arizona book club is hadrarius
. He actually speaks like Scooby-Doo, the cartoon character, and as it happens he spells that way too. When I showed him how to spell "hilarious", he got a blank look on his face and his tongue started to loll. Then he drooled on my shoes. Hmm...???? (insert giddy laugh)
The player he advises the Rams to watch out for is:
"Patrick Peterson – Touted as the best overall player in his draft class by some pundits, Peterson is coming into his own in his second year. Made the probowl as a punt returner last season by scoring four 80+ yard touchdowns off of punts. On his way to making the Bro Bowl as a corner this season."
So there they are, six player the Rams should keep an eye on in tonight's game. I'd like to thank all the guys over at Revenge of the Birds for their help and great senses of humor. Here's to a great contest tonight staring two NFC West teams on the rise!