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Cardinals LB Kevin Minter: When will we wake up?

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Last night, while Carson Palmer was getting pummeled by the Vikings at the end of a 30-24 loss in Minneapolis, Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians looked more baffled and dejected than we've seen after any loss in his previous three seasons with the team.

Linebacker Kevin Minter summed up that feeling quite well in an interview with the Arizona Republic.

"When are we going to wake up?" Minter said. "When are we going to finally do what we know we can do?"

The Cardinals (4-5-1) remain this season's biggest mystery. In nearly all of their wins and losses this season, they have shown stretches of the behemoth they were just a year ago. The same held true Sunday against the Vikings when they put up 124 yards on the ground. David Johnson was gaining nearly five yards per carry. Combined with an increasingly healthy Carson Palmer and Arians' play calling, this is a recipe for victory in the NFL nine times out of 10.

Arizona, however, is finally catching up to all of its good fortune.

"It's hard to win, period, in the National Football League," Larry Fitzgerald said. "It's damn hard. These guys, every single week, prepare just like we prepare. You have to go out there and earn victories in the National Football League. No one is going to lay out for you. You have to be able to make it happen. Unfortunately, we haven't done that enough this year."

With their playoff odds severely diminished, it will be interesting to see what this team is like down the stretch. Arizona took the typical risks and calculations of a team that was a step away from the Super Bowl. Almost like the star-studded 2011 Jets coming off two straight title game appearances, they are finding out that nothing is guaranteed. While we know Arians is an excellent coach, we will find out just how good he is over these final games against the Falcons, Redskins, Dolphins, Saints, Seahawks and Rams.

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