Behind Enemy Lines: Cardinals @ JAC, Part I

The Arizona Cardinals and Jacksonville Jaguars square off on Sunday for the first time since 2005. Much has changed in both organizations. JagNation.com publisher Charlie Bernstein fields questions about the Jags' current climate and what Arizona should expect come game day. How will the Jags defend the Cardinals three-headed monster? Why did they lose to the Colts? These answers and more inside.

Amberly Dressler: What were the biggest areas of concerns in last week's loss to the Indianapolis Colts?

Charlie Bernstein: The Jaguars defense played a nice bend, but don't break type of game, as they gave up yards to Manning and the Colts, but only allowed 14 points. The biggest area of concern is certainly the offense, and in particular quarterback David Garrard. Garrard seemingly refused to throw downfield and the Jags offense wasn't able to convert enough third downs to win.

AD: Why do you think the Colts were so successful in limiting the Jaguars to just over 100 passing yards? Do you think the Jaguars will struggle again through the air on Sunday?

CB: The Jaguars more or less limited themselves last Sunday as they didn't take many shots down field, and the quarterback checked down far too often. I can't imagine that we'll see a better aerial attack this week against a better Arizona secondary.

AD: On the other side of the ball, the Jaguars defense allowed Peyton Manning to throw every which way. What adjustments do the Jaguars need to make so Kurt Warner doesn't do the same with some of the biggest receiving threats in the league?


JPeyton Manning and Reggie Hayward
(AP Photo)

CB: The Jaguars certainly need to pressure the quarterback with more consistency than they did a week ago, but defending the pass will be a tall task as the Cards have a plethora of weapons. Arizona will likely pick on rookie corner Derek Cox, who had an uneven day on Sunday, as he intercepted Peyton Manning and picked up a Joseph Addai fumble but also was part of a career day for Reggie Wayne.

AD: Who were the most important offseason additions and what should the Cardinals expect from them on Sunday?

CB: The Jaguars most important offseason additions were rookies Eugene Monroe and Eben Britton on the offensive line, and rookies Terrance Knighton at defensive tackle, and Derek Cox at corner. All four were opening day starters and will play a big role on the Jaguars this season. The Cardinals should expect a ton of draw plays and screens to Maurice Jones-Drew, as he is the most explosive player on the offense.

AD: How big of a factor will Reggie Hayward's absence be on Sunday and throughout the season until he recovers from his broken leg (suffered last Sunday)?

CB: The loss of Hayward isn't devastating, as he isn't a Pro Bowl caliber player, but it's big because they really don't have a proven defensive end to play in either their 4-3 or 3-4 defense.

AD: The Jaguars appeared to be on the right path in 2007, what happened in 2008 to make the team head in the opposite direction. What should we expect from 2009?

CB: The Jaguars window of opportunity closed in 2008, and most everyone who covered the team didn't know it was happening. The team got old on defense and their career backup quarterback who had one great season's proverbial carriage turned back into a pumpkin and he returned to the form that's made him a career backup.


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