Kliff Kingsbury is entering his fourth season as the Cardinals head coach and has been unable to lead them back into contention. The Cardinals are in danger of another second-half collapse following their embarrassing loss to the Lions. Read more in detail here: kliff kingsbury.
The Arizona Cardinals started the season 7-0, and it seemed like they had finally broken through whatever was keeping them back. The Cardinals of 2021 seemed to be elite after back-to-back years of strong, but not exceptional, performance. Kyler Murray and the Cardinals seemed to be on their way to securing the No. 1 seed in the NFC, surrounded by new veteran signings A.J. Green, J.J. Watt, and Zach Ertz.
The Cardinals, on the other hand, began to seem more vulnerable as the weeks passed. Following their latest setback to the lowly Detroit Lions, they are currently 10-4 — 3-4 in their previous seven games.
Against the Lions, the Cardinals looked terrible.
One might argue that the Lions were due for a major upset this season at some time. The Cardinals, on the other hand, did not seem to be prepared to play. Murray and the offense only managed to score 12 points, while the defense gave up 30 points and 338 total yards to Jared Goff.
Arizona had a terrible day of football, no matter how you slice it. At every point, Kliff Kingsbury was outcoached and outmanoeuvred, unable to respond to what Dan Campbell threw at him as the game continued.
While the unexpected setback doesn’t necessarily eliminate the Cardinals from contention for the No. 1 seed, it does cast serious question on their ability to finish strong in the final weeks of the season. After all, this is a squad and coaching staff that has battled in previous years to win games late in the calendar.
Kyler Murray was questioned about the possibility of a second-half meltdown.
Kyler Murray on if this year’s second-half collapse is eerily eerily eerily eerily eerily eerily eerily eerily eerily eer
“Not in the least. Not in the least. We’re still in first position at 10-4. This isn’t where we were last year, and we’re not going to let it become any worse.”
December 19, 2021 — Darren Urban (@Cardschatter)
Kyler Murray was asked — very suddenly — whether he thought the Cardinals’ 2021 season was beginning to spin out of hand after the setback. Arizona went 3-6 in their last nine games of 2020, putting them out of the playoff race and casting doubt on Kingsbury’s coaching abilities.
Despite an unappealing day of football, Murray seemed upbeat. He doesn’t feel the Cardinals are in danger of imploding.
“Absolutely not. “Not at all,” Murray said emphatically. We’re still in first position at 10-4. This isn’t where we were last year, and we’re not going to let it become any worse.”
The Cardinals must demonstrate that they can finish strong.
Emilee Chinn/Getty Images | Kliff Kingsbury
There were legitimate concerns about Murray, Kingsbury, and the Cardinals’ general situation heading into the 2021 season. Many believed they weren’t set up for success this season, and that the majority of their seasoned acquisitions were ineffective. Some even questioned Kingsbury’s employment status.
While the Cardinals’ 7-0 start was stunning, their performance over the last three weeks has been more in line with expectations for Arizona this season. Watt’s injury has been a major factor in their recent problems. His injury history, on the other hand, was a major factor in the first signing’s skepticism.
The Cardinals have a few big games remaining on their schedule moving ahead. The Indianapolis Colts, Dallas Cowboys, and Seattle Seahawks are their opponents. If they want to remain a genuine threat in the NFC, they’ll have to win at least two of these games.
Pro Football Reference provided all stats.
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