Game Review – Cardinals: 2018 Week 13

Let’s start with silver linings:

  • Rodgers looks healthy
  • Adams actually seems to be getting better
  • JK Scott was booming
  • Uh…

Sure the Cardinals are 32nd in passing offense and 32nd in running offense, making them 32nd in total offense, but why would you think this would be an easy game? It wasn’t, let’s look at some of the key themes.

 

Special Teams Continue to be an Utter Embrassment

Pretty much every speacial teams play on the day was embarasing. It start with Jamaal WIlliams retunrning kicks, which makes no sense, and of course the first thing he does is bring a ball out of the end zone when he’s clearly going to be stopped short of the 25… which he was.

Then, when we have to punt on the first drive, Josh Jones shows putried awareness and lets a ball, that should easily be a downed between the 5 and the 0, roll gently past him and into the end zone. A couple punts later, J’Mon Moore watched another great punt roll towards the end zone and, for some reason, he kicked it.

In the 3rd, Josh Jones had another punt bounc right in front of him at the 4 then go into the end zone.

Kicking off throught the end zone after their first touchdown was probably the best special teams play they had.

With a chance to win at the end, getting the ball down 3, so, of course, they jumped offsides on a kick return that wasn’t even returned, just to make it a little harder on themselves. Then, after getting into very makeable field goal range to put the game into overtime, they shank the f#cking kick.

Beautiful.

This is one of the worse special teams performances I have seen for a whole season maybe ever. I mean, I remember just being upset because Walter Stanley would always run backwards on punt returns – I wish that was the biggest worry we had with this bunch of sad sacks.

 

Narrator: Rodgers Didn’t Light It Up

Remember when Cobb said Rodgers was gonna light it? That was fun.

The game, unfortunately, wasn’t.

Nothing wrong with completing 62% of your passes for 233 yards, 1 TD, and 0 interceptions in the rain when your receivers drop half a dozen balls, but he certainly wasn’t lighting it up.

It was more of a performance that makes you hope he can be healthy next year and closer to what he used to be – there were some nice throws. Some.

Rodgers is looking like he is fully healed, but he doesnt seem to have recovered his mechanics. There were a number of times (particularly when he took a deep shot to Davante Adams on 2nd and 1 with 3:12 left in half) where it looked like he was so focused on being careful with setting his feet and using proper mechanics, that he was overthinking and his throws were coming out hesitant. So many of his passes seemed just a little short, especially on screens and when throwing to Jimmy Graham (where it is clear that he doesn’t have a rapport with still), as receivers frequently seemed to be picked balls off their knees.

 

This Team

The body language everywhere was apparent – these are a bunch of guys who just want the season to end. That was the most telling thing of all and the final indictment on th McCarthy era.

The game reeked of apathy and an inability to overwhelm an overmatched opponent when you have everything on your side. The Cardinals had the worst run game in the league and averaged 6.2 yards pers carry. On defense, Arizona gives up 145 yards per game rushing, but held the Packers running backs to 49 yards on 18 carries.

The Packers D woke up for a key stop late and the offense marched down with urgency to respond, but for most of the game, this looked like a bored semi-pro team that couldn’t wait to get to the bar.

 

Question of the Week

Against a team that gives up 145 yards per game ont he ground, Aaron Jones managed… 36 yards on 11 carries.

Puke.

The “winner” was the person who guessed the lowest: CB_ReadinTweets predicted 50 yards.

 

Self Grading

A look at how we did in our predicitons from the pregam column:

  • Aaron Rodgers goes nuts No
  • Aaron Jones goes nuts No
  • Rodgers still gets sacked a few times No (say those answers like Micheal Scott and it’s more bearable)
  • Tramon comes up with a pick No
  • Fackrell gets another sack No
  • Defense gets a shutout No
  • JK Scott struggles in the cold No

I was off on everything, just like my Packers were.

Ok, so the season is pretty much over. There’s a lot to be excited about next year (mostly a new coach), but I’m a true fan. I’ll be watching and writing year round.

Hope to see you there.

 

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