LA Rams: How will the NFC West Division stack up at season’s end?
By Steve Rivera
Taking flight in the desert
The Arizona Cardinals enter the 2022 NFL season as the team with the best chance to knock the LA Rams from the top spot in the NFC West. While those odds might seem long, a run to the top of the division was something that the Cardinals were oh-so-close to accomplishing for much of the 2021 NFL season.
The catalyst for the Cardinals is quarterback Kyler Murray. Murray, who seems destined to finally get a much-deserved deal done, is eager to get a mulligan on leading the Cardinals back to the NFL Playoffs. What he does after that remains to be seen.
A dark horse for the Super Bowl, Arizona is a solid team in a division where they are the clear favorite for a tight second-place finish.
While the Rams are head and shoulders better than the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers, the Cardinals are an organization built around competitive coaching and the wonder that is Murray. He’s a quarterback who can beat you with his legs or his arm. Together, it’s an explosive combination.
If Murray is the triggerman in Arizona, then Kliff Kingsbury is the head coach who draws up the firepower. As the chief architect in the desert, his ability to utilize Murray will determine just how far the Cardinals can go.
If there’s one fly in the ointment, it’s the fact that Kyler Murray can undermine success with inconsistent play. And then there is that uncanny way that an undefeatable Cardinals team can play so well in the first half of the NFL season, but appear to be hapless in the second half of the season. If he can keep it together on the field, and not fade off into the sunset one more time, then the Arizona Cardinals may take flight. If they don’t, it’ll be Murray the finger will point to, not Kingsbury.
Regular season record: 11-6