The Cardinals were far from perfect in their preseason debut Friday night at Lambeau Field which is not all bad to coach Bruce Arians. Gives him something to yell about this week in practice. But there was enough good in the 17-0 victory over the Packers to make you think Arians wasn’t delusional when he said talent would not be a problem for the Cardinals this season. “There was enough good to be happy about” Arians said “but there’s more than enough bad to get corrected.” Yes it’s the preseason and there is plenty of fine print that comes with that. The games don’t count starters sometimes don’t play much etc. But after going 5-11 last year the Cardinals will take positive signs for the future when and where they can. “Whether it’s Pop Warner high school college — a shutout is a shutout” Arians said. Not that Arians was raving afterward. “Offensively we’ve got a long way to go” he said. “Left way too many points on the field dropped too many easy passes. But overall I like the way our older guys played. Our younger guys some of them stepped up.” The Cardinals passed for two touchdowns in the first half and led 14-0 at intermission. Starting quarterback Carson Palmer was efficient completing 4 of 6 for 77 yards including a 38-yard touchdown to receiver Andre Roberts. Roberts had dropped a similar pass earlier in the game. “We’re not always going to do it; we’re not going to force it” Palmer said of throwing deep. “But when those opportunities present themselves we’re going to try to take advantage of them.” The Cardinals didn’t commit a turnover and they forced two from the Packers: an interception by cornerback Patrick Peterson and a sack and forced fumble by defensive end John Abraham. Palmer’s backup Drew Stanton also played well taking over late in the second quarter. He was 8of14 for 107 yards and a touchdown. A 36-yard pass to rookie Charles Hawkins helped set up the Cardinals second touchdown a 1-yard pass to rookie Jaron Brown. That pass looked better live than on the stat sheet because Stanton put it on Brown’s shoulder away from the defender. The starting offensive line which is unsettled pass-blocked well. “I thought really the first and second groups did a phenomenal job” Palmer said. “There were great pockets to throw in. I didn’t have anybody around me at all. Drew had time when he was back there.” Again it’s the preseason but the contrast with last year was startling. In 2012 Cardinals quarterbacks were sacked 58 times most in the NFL.
Palmer tosses TD as Cardinals beat Packers 17-10
Arizona Republic | Aug 10