The Arizona Cardinals are set to take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week two. Coming off a disappointing loss to the New England Patriots and the Cardinals are looking to bounce back. Tampa Bay is an improved team in Jameis Winston‘s second year and will be a tough game to win.
Arizona Cardinals: Opposing Viewpoint
Head Coach Dirk Koetter
On Wednesday and Thursday, Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter addressed a few questions from the media about the upcoming game. He was quick to point out the success the New England Patriots had on third down converting ten of 16 attempts. The Buccaneers were only successful against the Falcons on three of their ten tries on third down. He shared that the team goal for third down efficiency is around 45% and they were nowhere near that number.
Does it help seeing the Cardinals three times in three years, as the offensive coordinator with the Atlanta Falcons?
“A little bit, but both teams have had change over. You see guys like Patrick Peterson and Calais Campbell and you’re going, okay those guys are pretty good. But, when they are not in your division and you only see them every other year it is hard to keep track”
It felt like Koetter is comfortable with the Cardinals personnel, but was not letting on to how well. In the three games against Arizona, Koetter had mixed results going 2-1. In one of their wins in 2012 his offense turned the ball over six times, including five interceptions by Matt Ryan.
How do the Cardinals intended to move Patrick Peterson around to take away the teams best receiver?
“Yeah, they did a lot last year, this year against New England they did not. I would anticipate that we would see that more this week. But in the past, they have like when we played them in Atlanta he matched up with Julio Jones the whole game.”
That game in Atlanta that he was talking about was a forgettable game for Peterson. He gave up 189 yards and a touchdown to Jones. Peterson will most likely be matched up against Mike Evans in this game and won’t receive much help. This may give Patrick his first real opportunity to defend some passes thrown his way.
How did Arizona use Chandler Jones and is he a concern?
“He is a real big concern. Any time a guy is coming off of a double digit sack year he is a concern. He is quick, he is long, he is powerful, and they move him around. It is always better for us when we know where a guy is, because we can get an extra guy over their. They flip him and number 44 (Marcus Golden), who is also a really good rusher with an unbelievable motor. Sometime they will line them up in the middle of the defense and we call that a spinner, so when the move them around it makes it tougher.”
The Buccaneers like to throw the ball down the field. They had four passes completed over 20 yards and those take time to develop. If Winston is forced to hold on to the ball for any longer than he wants to there could be an opportunity for the Cardinals pass rush to get to him.
This is set up to be a very good game that will challenge both teams. The Cardinals are one of four teams that open up with two games at home. It is as close to a must win game in week two as you can get trying to avoid 0-2 at home. The Buccaneers are one of three teams to start with two games on the road and have a chance to start 2-0. Both teams will be focused and understand the importance of getting the win on Sunday.