The Cardinals are in need of a win this week to keep pace with the surprising 49ers in the NFC West, and to do it they will head to Minnesota to play a Vikings team that has yet to win in 2011. Kevin Kolb and the Cards have to put last weeks stunning loss to the Giants behind them, and here’s some keys and our prediction for this weeks matchup.
1. Give the Hometown boy some love – Larry Fitzgerald has 18 receptions for 279 yards in two games in his hometown, and just loves to pick on the Vikings. There’s no reason to not throw his way at least 10-15 times on Sunday, as he and Kevin Kolb need to get and stay on the same page on Sunday. Last week against the Giants Fitz had 8 catches for 102 yards, and the team needs that type of production this week to pull off the road win.
2. Make McNabb Uncomfortable – Right now Donovan McNabb isn’t having a very good time playing in purple for a team that hasn’t won yet, and you can see it when he throws and his body language. This week the Cards need to get to him, and need to make sure he doesn’t have all day to throw. McNabb is averaging just 6.1 yards per pass, and has 4 TD’s and two picks, and this week the Cards need to pick his pocket a few times and make him hear the boo birds at the HHH Dome.
3. Keep Going to the Wells – Last week against the G-Men, Beanie Wells rushed for a career-high 138 yards and 3 TD’s. The Vikings run defense isn’t as imposing as it once was, and there’s no reason for Wells not to get about 20 carries in this game. The Cards O-line is starting to come around in the run game, and it looked last week like Wells was back to 100 percent from a health standpoint. Wells alone should be able to account for a big part of the game plan for the Cardinals.
Prediction – The Vikings are 0-4 and going nowhere but down. McNabb clearly is getting ready for life after football, and the team really should go with Christian Ponder. Minnesota has shown the ability to get ahead in games, but can’t close them out. Look for Kolb and Arizona to put up points, enough to send the Vikings to 0-5. Arizona 28 Minnesota 17