Scheme changes for the Cardinals

What to expect on both sides of the ball in Arizona in 2013

Originally Published: July 9, 2013
By Gary Horton | ESPN Insider

Bruce AriansAP Photo/Ross D. FranklinBruce Arians is attempting to rebuild the Arizona Cardinals in a tough NFC West.

New head coach Bruce Arians has brought a swagger and a positive attitude to the Arizona Cardinals. This new coaching staff believes that they have an elite defense that can compete with San Francisco and Seattle in the division. It also believes the Cards possess a solid offensive line when healthy, that Rashard Mendenhall can solve the run-game woes and that QB Carson Palmer still has quality production left in the tank.

If they are right, then this becomes a reloading job instead of a rebuilding project. But in a very strong NFC West, it won't take long to get the answer of whether this team is ready to compete. After going back to the film room, let's take a look at what we expect to see on both sides of the ball in 2013 from Arians and his staff.

Offense

As creative as this offense will be with Arians and renowned assistant head coach Tom Moore in terms of play calling and schemes, it will also be a strong teaching staff (as evidenced by their 24 coaches). There will be an emphasis on fundamentals and attention to detail. While Arians will always be a pass-first coach, he recognizes the lack of balance this offense has had in recent years due to a woeful run game and he thinks that he can solve that problem with Mendenhall.

Gary Horton spent 10 years in the NFL as a scout and another 10 years at the college level as an assistant coach and recruiter. He is the founder and most seasoned member of the Scouts Inc. staff, and his extensive experience at all levels of football make him an excellent talent evaluator.