The Red Birds will open the 2013 campaign on Sunday in their old home city – St. Louis – against the NFC West division rival Rams. The Cards are looking to bounce back from a very disappointing 5-11 season last year..
Hope is in the air now that Arizona has a new quarterback in veteran Carson Palmer. Palmer may be 33 years old but he threw for over 4,000 yards last season with the Raiders and still has a lot of life in that strong right arm of his. The offensive line just needs to protect him.
So how will this year's Arizona contingent do? Let's take a look at each game on their schedule with a prediction for each one:
Season Opener - Sunday at St. Louis Rams – A very tough call here. Rams usually play the Red Birds tough in the dome. Arizona must be prepared for speedy rookie Tavon Austin. Loss.
Sept. 15 vs. Detroit Lions - Cards earn impressive win in their home opener as Palmer-Fitzgerald-Floyd exploit weak Lions secondary. Win.
Sept. 22 at New Orleans Saints - This should be a wild, high-scoring shootout but Drew Brees and the Saints have just have too much firepower. Loss.
Sept. 29 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Red Birds move to 2-2 by putting lots of sustained pressure on Bucs QB Josh Freeman. Win.
Oct. 6 vs. Carolina Panthers – Two great receivers in this contest – Carolina's Steve Smith and Larry Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald's team wins big. Win.
Oct. 13 at San Francisco 49ers - NFC Champs still very tough, especially in Candlestick Park. Two fine defenses here. Loss.
Oct. 17 vs. Seattle Seahawks - Tight NFC West battle goes into overtime where Cards win it with a long Jay Feely field goal. Huge victory. Win.
Oct. 27 vs. Atlanta Falcons - Matt Ryan, Roddy White and Julio Jones are just too much for Arizona. Loss.
Nov. 10 vs. Houston Texans - All-Pro running back Arian Foster and Ben Tate have big games for the Texans. Loss.
Nov. 17 at Jacksonville Jaguars - Red Birds travel East and beat one of the worst teams in the league. Win.
Nov. 24 vs. Indianapolis Colts - QB Andrew Luck visits Glendale for the first time and runs into the buzz saw Cardinals D. Win.
Dec. 1 at Philadelphia Eagles - Another trip to the Eastern time zone to face Chip Kelly's Eagles squad. Loss.
Dec. 8 vs. St. Louis Rams – Cardinals get some revenge for their season opening loss to the Rams. Fitzgerald catches two TD passes from Palmer. Win.
Dec. 15 at Tennessee Titans – Can the Red Birds shut down RB Chris Johnson? They do just enough to post a nice road triumph. Win.
Dec. 22 at Seattle Seahawks - Arizona travels to the toughest road Stadium in NFL - CenturyLink Field – and the results are not good. Loss.
Dec. 29 vs. San Francisco 49ers - Cards drop second straight to finish the season at 8-8, which is still a three-game improvement from last season. Loss.
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