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News » Five ways to slow down the Cardinals' offense


Five ways to slow down the Cardinals' offense


Five ways to slow down the Cardinals' offense
1. Don't obsess about sacks: Kurt Warner doesn't take many (20 for the season), and he's got an incredibly quick release. But a team has to make him uncomfortable, like the Philadelphia Eagles did late last month. They didn't have a sack, yet they harassed and pressured Warner into his worst game of the season, intercepting three passes and allowing him to complete just 53.8 percent of his passes.


2. Buy your pass rushers time: Jamming the Cardinals' receivers is easier said than done: Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin are both big and physical. But Antoine Winfield, Benny Sapp and Cedric Griffin aren't shy about contact, so they have to do enough to slow the receivers at the line of scrimmage, giving the defensive linemen and linebackers a chance to at least make Warner antsy in the pocket.

3. Run, run, run: The Cardinals' defense is all about speed, built in the mode of former Vikings coach Dennis Green. One of the strengths of the Vikings' offensive line is size, with the smallest starter 309 pounds (center Matt Birk). The duo of Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor could give their defense a big assist by grinding the clock, methodically working the ball down the field and taking the pressure off of the Cardinals' pass rush.

4. Stiffen up on third down: The Cardinals are ninth in the NFL on third-down conversions, and they've got three very good receivers. Unlike some opponents, the Cardinals aren't as discouraged by third-and-long. The Vikings' third-down defense has been excellent the past two games, allowing the Chicago Bears and the Detroit Lions to convert just six of 25 third-down attempts.

5. Capitalize on opportunities: Warner is a certain MVP candidate with some ridiculous numbers. But he also does give defenses chances to make plays. The Vikings can't afford to miss on those. Warner has at least one interception in each of the past four games, including three against the Eagles. The Vikings didn't have a pick against the Lions but had five in the previous two games.



Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 14, 2008

Jamal Jones Name: Jamal Jones
#85
Position: WR
Age: 27
Experience: 2 years
College: North Carolina A&T
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