The Cards Seem Confused About the Passing Game

Harry

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I was just reading an article on the Cards’ site about how after Murray’s leg injury he averaged only 6.5 yds per pass attempt. I don’t have the time to go play by play but I’m quite sure that a more normal number would have been obtained if the Cards had stopped throwing so many passes behind the line. Game after game this category of passes was continually attempted despite the results being near total failure. Feel free to add in that definition of insanity here. My chief criticism of Kingsbury has been he responds too slowly to things that obviously are failing. This year there will no longer be an excuse of the absence of quality downfield targets. I’m not opposed to throwing a few behind the line passes to start the season, but if the failure continues, throw the ball downfield.

I'm certain there are people thinking the marginal O-line contributed to this problem. It too has been improved but I’m more focused on play selection. Can Kingsbury alter his in-game play calling based on what’s working or will he continue to call the plays he wants to work? This has historically been one of the problems with head coaches who call plays. They often lack flexibility.

There are, of course, other play selection issues involving a Jekyll & Hyde approach to aggressiveness especially on 3rd & 4th down. Games are typically won in the NFL by identifying an opponents’ weaknesses and continually exploiting them. You’ve seen teams id a weak CB and just continue to attack him. Can you recall seeing the Cards do this? They seem to call plays based not on in-game events, but rather on what Kingsbury has planned. This would seem to be a make it or break it year for Kingsbury. He seems more invested in Murray than Murray is invested in him. I don’t see Kingsbury returning if the Cards go 8-8 again. If Kingsbury can’t improve his play calling, even 8-8 may prove challenging.
 

juza76

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Continually using that play is infuriating. The most common targets for it were Fitz and Hop as well. It repeatedly failed and we were exposing our WRs to hits from DL and LBs, Hopkins even lost a fumble on one of those plays early in a game.
we were lucky he came away with no injuries in that play
Pretty stupid using your star in that kind of risky play, for what then? Couple of yards
He is not even his strength playing screen passes cause doesn't have the burst to make people miss
Do u know if KK while using the tablet for the playbook doesn't chat with some IG models?
 

PACardsFan

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I was just reading an article on the Cards’ site about how after Murray’s leg injury he averaged only 6.5 yds per pass attempt. I don’t have the time to go play by play but I’m quite sure that a more normal number would have been obtained if the Cards had stopped throwing so many passes behind the line. Game after game this category of passes was continually attempted despite the results being near total failure. Feel free to add in that definition of insanity here. My chief criticism of Kingsbury has been he responds too slowly to things that obviously are failing. This year there will no longer be an excuse of the absence of quality downfield targets. I’m not opposed to throwing a few behind the line passes to start the season, but if the failure continues, throw the ball downfield.

I'm certain there are people thinking the marginal O-line contributed to this problem. It too has been improved but I’m more focused on play selection. Can Kingsbury alter his in-game play calling based on what’s working or will he continue to call the plays he wants to work? This has historically been one of the problems with head coaches who call plays. They often lack flexibility.

There are, of course, other play selection issues involving a Jekyll & Hyde approach to aggressiveness especially on 3rd & 4th down. Games are typically won in the NFL by identifying an opponents’ weaknesses and continually exploiting them. You’ve seen teams id a weak CB and just continue to attack him. Can you recall seeing the Cards do this? They seem to call plays based not on in-game events, but rather on what Kingsbury has planned. This would seem to be a make it or break it year for Kingsbury. He seems more invested in Murray than Murray is invested in him. I don’t see Kingsbury returning if the Cards go 8-8 again. If Kingsbury can’t improve his play calling, even 8-8 may prove challenging.
Very good post, and I couldn’t agree more. We really didn’t have the type of WR that could make the first defender miss on those passes behind the LOS. Hopefully, Rondale can be that guy, but I still want this offense to get the ball down the field. Before his injury, Murray would save drives with his legs. Once he had to be more cautious due to the injury, this offense was stymied all too often. Yes, we had a poor overall WR group, and yes, we had a poor interior to our OL. I’m sure MB feels we have improved those areas enough to see us have double digit wins. I also feel Kingsbury is in trouble if we don’t.
 

football karma

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contrarian take:

this is correlation not causation

they ran lots of WR screens in the first half of the season when the offense was clicking. like the second half of the season, few of them really worked for big yards.
 

BigRedRage

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The offense does tend to focus more on what they do best vs what the defense can give them. I think this is a staple of the air raid that he has not worked out of yet.
 

Krangthebrain

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The bubble screen to Fitz or Hop was a disaster last year. Fitz whiffed often on the blocks.

I think this was necessitated because Kirk was the target with some deep speed.

With Hop, Green, Kirk, and Moore this play should be A LOT more effective. You can go 4 wide, and have Hop or Green block for Kirk or Moore. Fitzgerald was awful blocking for bubble screens last year.
 

jf-08

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My take:

Our interior line was so pathetic that the bubble screen was utilized to minimize the effectiveness of an interior defensive rush. Instead of simply running, the WR screen was used instead. It limited the interior defense and forced them to adapt and not attack the middle, by having to have secondary coverage on the sides. As a result, our running game was complemented by having the interior defenses watch out for the WR screens.

Now with our int OLINE upgraded, I'm curious to see if they still have to go this route. Undoubtedly Moore will be used in this fashion, but I doubt Nuk will be.
 

football karma

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i think those WR screens are a key part Kliffs offensive philosophy: make the D defend the entire field --

they arent going away.
 

AsUpRoDiGy

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Pedestrian route trees, no rub routes, hardly any crossing routes, and no motion. When it comes to the passing game, this offense is designed to work harder... not smarter. Scheming guys open is seemingly not KK's strong suit, unfortunately.
 

Chopper0080

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I am very curious to see what our offense looks like without our line being a liability. My guess is that most on this board may be shocked to see the variety of offense you can run when you have the players to be able to consistently give you the time to call it. Not shockingly the Cardinals best offenses have always corresponded with our most talented offensive lines.
 

Chopper0080

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Interesting question, where do the following offensive linemen rank in terms of players at their position since the Cardinals moved to Arizona?

DJ Humphries? Not a better career than Lomas Brown, but is he better than Lomas when he was signed as a FA? On par with LJ Shelton? Luis Sharpe is probably the best, right?

Justin Pugh? Pete Kendall?

Rodney Hudson? I know he is not the player he was, but is he already the best C the Cardinals have had since moving? Lyle Sendlein?

Kelvin Beachum? Not as good as Bobby Massie or Anthony Clement as he has played 1 year, or Leonard Davis, but is that the list?
 
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