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Players In The Spotlight: Seattle Week

Against the Seahawks, Green, Conner, QBs, Phillips and Murphy ones to watch

AJ Green Spotlight Seahawks

The Cardinals enter Week 11 with the second-best record in the NFC, looking to secure a 9-2 start Sunday when they play the Seahawks at Lumen Field.

Ahead of the first divisional matchup between the teams this season, here are five Cardinals to watch for in this week's spotlight.

A.J. Green

If DeAndre Hopkins misses his third consecutive game with a bad hamstring, Green should be one of the focal points of the passing offense. Green last faced a Seattle secondary in 2015 with the Bengals and had six catches for 78 yards. Green was quiet as the primary option last week in the loss to Carolina, finishing with one catch for four yards. Lining up Sunday against a pass defense allowing the fourth-most yards in the NFL gives Green an excellent opportunity to bounce back.

Milestone watch: With 110 receiving yards, Green would reach 10,000 receiving yards for his career. He would join teammate DeAndre Hopkins, Julio Jones, Antonio Brown and DeSean Jackson as the only active players to reach the milestone.

James Conner

Conner was among the few bright spots in the loss to Carolina last Sunday, accumulating 64 total yards from scrimmage with a rushing touchdown. Conner could receive an increased workload in Seattle. It's not a bad idea since Conner showcased an NFC Player of the Week-worthy performance when tasked with a heavy load two weeks ago at San Francisco. Through 10 games, Seattle is allowing the seventh-most rushing yards in the NFL.

Milestone watch: With a rushing touchdown, Conner would have 12 rushing TDs in 2021. Only two players in franchise history would have more rushing TDs in a season: David Johnson (16 in 2016) and John David Crow (14 in 1962). It would also give Conner at least one rushing TD in five consecutive games, tying the franchise record.

With two rushing touchdowns, Conner (5) would join David Johnson (5 in 2016) as the only players in franchise history with five games of multiple rushing TDs in a single season.

The unknown starting quarterback

Kyler Murray is uncertain to return Sunday after missing the previous two games with an ankle injury. It's possible Murray plays, but coaches could decide to sit Murray an additional week out of precaution, especially with an upcoming bye week approaching. His replacement, Colt McCoy, is also uncertain to play after suffering a pectoral injury against Carolina. If Murray and McCoy can't go fully Sunday, Chris Streveler could make his first start this season.

Milestone watch: (If Murray plays) With 31 passing yards, Murray (24 years, 106 days old) would become the fourth-youngest player in NFL history to reach 10,000 career passing yards.

With a passer rating of 120.0+, Murray would tie the franchise record (Kurt Warner's five in 2009) for the most such games in a single season.

Jordan Phillips

Phillips and the rest of the Cardinals' front seven struggled to contain the run last week, allowing Carolina to rush for 166 yards on the ground. Seattle's best rusher Chris Carson is on injured reserve, leaving Alex Collins to receive the bulk of the carries. The Cardinals' run defense has had impressive moments this season, shutting down superior run-centric offenses. Can they do it again Sunday?

Byron Murphy Jr.

According to Pro Football Focus, Murphy Jr. was the most targeted in the Cardinals' secondary against Carolina and allowed just three catches for 20 yards. His task this week won't be easier -- Seahawks' DK Metcalf is one of the premier receivers in the league, tied for third with Kansas City's Tyreek Hill for the most touchdowns among receivers. Quarterback Russell Wilson and Metcalf struggled to connect last week in a loss at Green Bay. Both look to rebound with better performances that could involve testing Murphy throughout the game.

Images of the top players to watch Sunday versus Seattle: WR A.J. Green, CB Byron Murphy Jr., RB James Conner, DL Jordan Phillips and the unknown starting QB