Found September 23, 2013 on Sports Report Arizona:
  The Arizona Cardinals fell Sunday afternoon to the New Orleans Saints by a score of 31-7 in what was a major step back by the offense after last week’s tough victory.  Head coach Bruce Arians will have much to work on during the week if his Cardinals are to even their record in Tampa Bay a week from today. The Cardinals entered the game looking to continue their growth on offense in order to keep pace with the explosive Saints offense.  However, the unit encountered familiar problems which ultimately cost them the game.  For starters, the offensive line struggled just as bad, if not worse than the week 1 loss in St. Louis.  On the day the line surrendered 4 sacks against the Saints, nearly equaling their total from the season’s first two games.  Cameron Jordan led the charge with two sacks of his own against the inadequate Cardinals line, routinely pushing back right guard Paul Fanaika and right tackle Eric Winston in one on one matchups.  To make matters worse, the coaching staff tried to match New Orleans through the air, with Palmer going 18-35 on the day for less than 200 yards passing. The attempts to play by air was counter intuitive for a unit which turned in 86 yards on the ground in just 16 attempts.  The run game had been highlighted as a possible way to keep the Saints offense on the sidelines while also providing a much needed balance for the Cardinals attack.  However, the coaching staff seemingly scrapped any chance at that balance after falling behind in the first quarter and struggling to maintain a close margin. The defense put pressure on quarterback Drew Brees, tallying 4 sacks, 2 of which belonged to defensive tackle Darnell Dockett.  Where the defense struggled was matching up against tight end Jimmy Graham.  Graham shredded the Cardinals secondary and linebacker units for 2 touchdowns on 134 yards receiving and 9 catches.  Defensive coordinator Todd Bowles used various players to cover Graham without any success.  The list included safety Tyrann Mathieu and corner Patrick Peterson.  Graham’s combination of size and athletic ability gave headaches to the Cardinals defense for the entire day. Brees finished the day with another 300 yards plus of passing.  The defense played well enough to keep the offense in the game for most of the day but received no help outside of the opening drive score.  For Arians and the rest of the coaching staff, it’s time to move on and prepare for Tampa Bay.  The season doesn’t get any easier and the issues will need to be fixed if this team expects to improve on an abysmal 2012 season. We’ll have breakdown of the areas of concern for the Cardinals as well as what each unit will face against the Buccaneers in the coming days.
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