Around the NFL  

 

Bruce Arians: No doubt Cardinals will win vs. Panthers

Print

Slouching into the playoffs with his fourth quarterback of the season hasn't curbed Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians' unwavering swagger.

Ryan Lindley will enter Saturday's game against the Carolina Panthers with the lowest career passer rating (50.3) of any quarterback in the last 30 years, but Arians is growing more comfortable with his offense.

"There's a true belief we're going to win the game," Arians said Thursday, via The Arizona Republic. "There's no doubt about it."

Arians draws inspiration from the belief that Lindley has grown "light-years" in the past two weeks and a playoff debut is "not too big for him."

"When you get experience in big games, and those were two big games, it affects how you play," Arians said. "And I think he's more than ready now to play extremely well."

With Carson Palmer and Drew Stanton out of the picture and rookie Logan Thomas years away from being ready, Arians has no choice but to instill as much confidence as possible in Lindley.

As long as the defense and special teams keep the game close, Arians can mitigate Lindley's impact by mixing in the run, designing play action and scripting easily defined reads.

The problem is that Lindley has yet to show he can play without locking onto his primary receiver and predetermining his throws.

With the quarterback holding the offense hostage, the Cardinals' 73 points over the final six weeks of the season are the fewest by any playoff team since 1936.

That spells trouble against a revamped Panthers defense tightening passing windows while allowing just 10.8 points per game over the past month.

There are enough concerns to harbor doubts whether Arians acknowledges them or not.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast previews this weekend's four Wild-Card matchups and predicts who will advance. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

Print