How to watch the Cardinals face the Vikings in a preseason matchup Saturday, August 24.
Rookie quarterback Kyler Murray looks to bounce back from a dismal performance Saturday when the Cardinals face the Vikings on the road.
Murray, the No. 1 overall pick and 2018 Heisman Trophy winner, endured a rough game in Arizona’s, 33-26, loss to the Oakland Raiders on Aug. 15. He went 3-for-8 for 12 yards and was sacked twice, immediately raising the expected concerns on social media whether the 5-foot-10 Murray is tall enough to see in the pocket and if his 207-pound frame is sturdy enough to take an NFL-caliber pounding after proving so elusive directing Oklahoma’s high-octane offense.
There were other concerns, too. Mistimed clap snaps resulted in a pair of penalties and Arizona committed six of its 14 penalties when Murray was under center. One of the two sacks resulted in a safety, and the Cardinals were 0-for-4 on third downs when he played.
Murray will be the starter in Week 1 versus the Detroit Lions barring injury, but there is still much more work left for the signal-caller and first-year coach Kliff Kingsbury to make this offense viable.
Defensively, the Cardinals will be using this contest for cornerback auditions. Already short-handed because Patrick Peterson will serve a six-game suspension to start the regular season for violating the league’s PED policy, his projected replacement Robert Alford will miss “an extended amount of time” in Kingsbury’s words with a lower leg injury suffered in practice Tuesday. That leaves Tramaine Brock as the likely No. 1 cornerback for the season opener, with second-year pro Chris Jones and 2019 second-round pick Byron Murphy vying for the other spot.
Facing a defense on unsteady footing may be a boon to the Vikings as quarterback Kirk Cousins continues mastering a new-look offense that will have more than a passing resemblance to Denver Broncos teams of years past, as Gary Kubiak is serving as an advisor to first-year offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski.
The Vikings ranked in the bottom half of the league in scoring at 22.5 points per game last season and scored 10 or fewer points in three of their last five games. Minnesota has all the tools needed for a high-powered offense with 1,000-yard receivers Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, steady tight end Kyle Rudolph and running backs Dalvin Cook and C.J. Ham.
Cousins looked sharp for the second straight game as he completed 6-of-8 passes for 68 yards in two series of Minnesota’s, 25-19, victory over Seattle on Sunday. He has gone 8-for-10 for 133 yards with a touchdown pass in the first two preseason games.
Defensively, the Vikings will likely keep their starters on the field for the entire first half after playing into the second quarter Sunday. Minnesota already looks to be in regular season form on that side of the ball after not allowing a touchdown in three red zone opportunities to the Seahawks and twice turned them away on goal-to-go situations.
When: Saturday, August 24
Time: 12:00 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network
Live Stream: Watch live on fuboTV. Sign up now for a free seven-day trial.