The Cardinals only managed five wins during Kyler Murray’s rookie season. The pressure is on Arizona to become playoff contenders in 2020.
Credit Kliff Kingsbury for turning the Cardinals into one of the most interesting NFL teams to watch in 2019. The challenge for he and his staff in year two is to transform Arizona from good entertainment into a winning football team.
The offense projects to be one of the most dangerous units in the league this season. Adding DeAndre Hopkins to the team’s receiving mix should do wonders for Kyler Murray. The diminutive quarterback excels at extending plays and finding his wideouts down the field. That’s just what Hopkins does best.
The defense still looks short on talent, but drafting Isaiah Simmons in the first round could end up covering up a lot of holes for the coaching staff. He’ll predominantly line up at linebacker, but he can also cover tight ends and wideouts in space. That makes him a really versatile weapon in the modern NFL.
It’s probably too soon for the Cardinals to overcome the likes of the 49ers and Seahawks, but they have the upside of a Wild Card team. The outcome of the following five predictions will go a long way towards determining the team’s chances of realizing that potential.
5. Josh Jones will beat out Marcus Gilbert
Hopkins is the big money offensive addition of the Cardinals’ offseason, but drafting Jones could turn out to be just as important. He may not start at right tackle for Arizona in Week 1, but he has too much talent to stay on the bench for long. Expect him to slot into the team’s starting lineup for the second half of the season. It’s very possible he takes over for Gilbert much sooner than that.