An exciting rendition of NFL football will finally be here and this season is almost promising to be like no other and this rings especially true for the Arizona Cardinals. From the unfortunate uptick in coronavirus cases to the trade that rocked the NFL world by gaining DeAndre Hopkins, Arizona has had a very eventful offseason.
No matter what the outside factors may hold, it appears the league is committed to finding a way to keep this show on the road. With second-year QB Kyler Murray, future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald, and a committed focus to defense, the Cardinals will look to not only improve on their 5-10-1 record but shock the league with a playoff appearance.
But will they be capable of competing in a division bolstered by the likes of Seattle and San Francisco? Stay tuned in all season long on with DISH Network and take a look at some of the most exciting themes to watch this season before Arizona travels to the Bay Area to take on San Francisco on FOX.
All Eyes Are on Kyler Murray
Progression and development.
These are the two words fans will be looking to see personified through their signal-caller during the 2020 NFL season. You would be hard-pressed to find someone who honestly expects the second-year quarterback to reach the likes of an Aaron Rodgers or Patrick Mahomes just yet, however, the former overall number one pick will need to improve his game if the Cardinals are going to move in the right direction. Murray will need to dial back the interceptions, coming off of a campaign that saw him throw 12, will be a key point for the young quarterback. This year, he will have an improved core of receivers to help open up the field. Seeing how he handles distributing the ball as well as knowing when to run and when to protect his body will go a long way for the Cardinals this season.
New Weapons and Old Guns
If not for a global pandemic and other off-the-field issues, the DeAndre Hopkins/David Johnson trade might have been the most talked-about NFL event in the offseason. Gaining one of the most talented wide receivers still in their prime and pairing him with a HOF’er who seems to age like a fine wine could be the exact breath of new life Arizona has been waiting for. With a mix of other weapons ready to return and find pay dirt, the Arizona Cardinals are providing Kyler Murray with a solid arsenal to deploy as he leads them on the offensive this season.
The Cardinals Are Focusing on Defense
One of the least conventional drafts in NFL history saw the Arizona Cardinals bring in six new players to the organization. Four of them, including first-round pick Isaiah Simmons and newly crowned College Playoff champion Rashard Lawrence, were defensive picks. The Cardinals already have many talented defensive players highlighted by Patrick Peterson and have even made free safety Budda Baker a very, very wealthy man this offseason. For young quarterbacks having a stout defense is of great benefit, well, for any quarterback for that matter, and the Cardinals continue to keep a solidified defensive effort a part of their organization’s culture this season.
Is Patrick Peterson a Part of Arizona’s Future?
The defense may be improving but will the Cardinals suffer a setback during the season? Last season while serving a suspension, Patrick Peterson was still able to generate interest in a possible trade that he was seeking away from the organization. The talented veteran will again be a part of a rebuilding process in a stage in his career in which he may be looking to be part of a more playoff-ready squad. Do the Cardinals unload the veteran for pieces to build a brighter future or will they again retain his talent to help them with their efforts?
Opt-Outs and Outside Noise
A common theme across all sports this year is that there are a variety of off-the-field distractions surrounding a variety of topics. Love it or hate it, players will have plenty of factors to affect the outside of the world of football including the COVID-19 pandemic that is continuing to affect nations around the world. The NFL has already seen players opt-out of the season and other sports have had to move things around after teams began to see many outbreaks within their organizations including the beloved Arizona Diamondbacks. Each team will have to tackle this issue differently but the Cardinals will still have to face the possibility of a very different atmosphere no matter where they play come game time this season.
Where to Watch the Arizona Cardinals
Following the Cardinals all season long is a breeze with DISH Network and don’t forget to check out the NFL’s weekly television schedule here. Looking to subscribe to all of the amazing NFL action DISH has to offer? Contact us today and gain access to live games, fantasy advice, news, analysis, and more across a wide range of networks including FOX, ESPN, NFL Network, and plenty more.