The three biggest things to watch for Sunday when the Cardinals play the Lions at State Farm Stadium:
Kyler Murray said after last week's game the Cardinals' offense quite obviously left some things on the field. They need all those things. Whether it is Kliff Kingsbury lamenting all the penalties – most of them on offense, derailing drives – or DeAndre Hopkins talking about route miscommunication that results in an interception, or even Murray just missing open shots, like Chase Edmonds in the end zone, those are yards and points and mistakes that the Cards won't be able to afford against the better teams. It is still early yes. But a three-game road streak is coming. It'd be good for the Cards to find their groove before climbing on the airplane.
P2 Gets Himself Some Golladay
The Lions get back Kenny Golladay, their best receiver who had a bad hamstring the first two games. He's the kind of receiver that usually gets the Patrick Peterson treatment. Last year, the Cards didn't have Peterson, the Lions had Golladay, and he had just four catches. But tight end T.J. Hockenson went off, and the Cardinals feel good that they have figured out the tight end issues. So maybe Matthew Stafford looks to jump-start the Lions season with Golladay's talents. A hamstring might mean Golladay doesn't play as many snaps as he might usually. Vance Joseph wouldn't promise that Peterson would be on him the whole time, either. But it will be something to watch. The Cards have done a nice job on pass defense for the most part. But this will be the best passing attack they've seen so far.
Good Teams Make It Happen
The Cardinals have not proven anything yet with their 2-0 record, but they can. The Lions are 0-2 and coming across the country (not to mention the struggling Panthers and Jets after that.) It's probably too early to officially call the Cards a good team, but good teams win home games (big crowds or not) against struggling teams. Nothing is a lock and many thought the Lions could be in the playoff conversation. They have a good quarterback. But this is the kind of game the Cards need to win.