Meanwhile, Arizona Cardinals fans have already torn up the wrapping paper from the Christmas presents under the tree.
While some have received new jerseys and other related items, the real gifts for fans may lie in better performances in the future.
While a win against Tom Brady would be nice, here are three gifts fans can hope for under the metaphorical tree:
The Cardinals are an obviously talented team that plays a major role in some of the frustrations going on in the desert right now. This team started the year 7-0 just last season and still made it into the postseason despite a late-season collapse.
Extensions were issued and the results were less than ideal. Kyler Murray isn’t going anywhere, so the light that’s shining now points to Steve Keim/Kliff Kingsbury.
Keim just hasn’t done enough in his years as general manager to take the Cardinals to the top, and so obviously Kingsbury isn’t the man to take Arizona to the next level.
Replacing both will probably be pretty high on most wish lists.
New offensive line
Like every other team in the league, success for the Cardinals begins in the trenches, a facet in which they struggled even before four of five starters were downed with injuries. Arizona needs a new injection of life to help Murray walk upright. Veteran additions like Rodney Hudson and Justin Pugh were good but short-term solutions to a problem Arizona needs to address to foster some stability in the future.
This can be supported with the third and final gift:
A top five pick in the NFL draft
No Cardinals fan wants to count on losing, but with Arizona down 4-10 and postseason hopes dashed, losing isn’t exactly a terrible thing when moving forward.
The Cardinals still have three games to go all season to string together straight wins. Is that likely? Not really.
As such, Arizona is in a great position to end the upcoming draft with a top-five pick.
This selection can be used on a generation player like Will Anderson or Jalen Carter. It can also be used as a trading tool to go down and raise valuable capital.
However the Cardinals choose to do business, there is serious potential to make the team better in April.
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