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The Arizona Cardinals do not have an easy schedule this season based on the quarterback they will face. Based on the list of the 15 best quarterbacks in the NFL according to Touchdown Wire’s Mark Schofield, the Cardinals have 10 games on their schedule against eight of them.
Why 10 games against eight? That is because two of them are in the NFC West and the Cardinals will face them twice.
Check out the top opposing quarterbacks they will potentially face this season.
Week 1, Tennessee Titans: No. 10 Ryan Tannehill
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Tannehill has had a resurgence with the Titans. He has led them to two straight playoff appearances and is 18-8 as a starter in the regular season over the last two seasons. He had nearly 4,000 passing yards in 2020 and threw 33 touchdown passes. He also is a running threat, as he added 266 rushing yards and seven touchdowns, giving him a combined 40 touchdowns on the season. He is 1-1 in two career starts against the Cardinals with 626 passing yards, four touchdowns and three interceptions. He was sacked five times in those two games.
Week 2, Minnesota Vikings: No. 12 Kirk Cousins
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Some wonder about actually how good Cousins is, but there is no doubting his production. He had 4,265 passing yards in 2020, the fifth time he has passed for at least 4,000 yards in a season, and he had 35 touchdown passes to 13 interceptions. He is 2-2 as a starter against the Cardinals. He has thrown six touchdown passes and five interceptions against them, averaging 264 yards per game. He has also rushed for a pair of scores against them.
Weeks 4 and 14, Los Angeles Rams: No. 9 Matthew Stafford
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Stafford is in his first season with the Rams after being traded from the Detroit Lions. He is one of the most talented passers in the game and now gets to play in an offense that could have him explode statistically. He had 4,084 passing yards in 2020 to go with 26 touchdown passes and only 10 interceptions. It was the eighth time he had over 4,000 passing yards. He has played the Cardinals a lot for not being the NFC West. He has faced the Cardinals eight times and is 3-4-1 against them with 12 touchdown passes and eight interceptions, averaging 243 passing yards per game. The Cardinals have sacked him 17 times. However, the Cardinals have not beaten Stafford in their last four games against him. They started out 4-0 against him but he last lost to the Cardinals in 2015. That, combined with the Rams head coach Sean McVay's 8-0 record against the Cardinals, is a bad look as they face the Rams twice this season.
Week 6, Cleveland Browns: No. 11 Baker Mayfield
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Mayfield led the Browns to a playoff victory last year and he leads a Browns team in 2021 that rivals the Chiefs, Bills and Ravens in terms of talent. He had 3,563 passing yards and 26 touchdown passes with only eight interceptions. In his one appearance against the Cardinals in 2019, Arizona picked up a 38-24 win and Mayfield had 247 passing yards, two touchdowns and a pick.
Week 7, Houston Texans: Deshaun Watson
The Texans are on the schedule in Week 7 in Arizona, but it is looking less and less that Watson will be the starter, considering his legal troubles right now and the accusations against him. If he does not play, it will be Tyrod Taylor, who is a significant downgrade. Watson led the NFL with 4,823 passing yards and 33 touchdown passes to only seven interceptions. The Cardinals have not yet faced him in his career.
Week 8, Green Bay Packers: No. 2 Aaron Rodgers
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This matchup is also somewhat in the air as Rodgers has not participated in any offseason work with the team and might not play for the Packers this season. He was the league MVP last season with a league-high 48 touchdown passes and a league-passer rating of 121.5. Rodgers is 2-2 in four regular-season starts against the Cardinals. He is also 0-2 in the postseason against the Cardinals.
Weeks 11 and 18, Seattle Seahawks: No. 5 Russell Wilson
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\Wilson is a regular foe for the Cardinals. He comes in at No. 5 in these quarterback rankings and he is truly one of the league's best. The Cardinals have had success against him. He had a career-high 40 touchdown passes last season and threw for more than 4,000 yards for the fourth time. Only one team -- the Rams -- have beaten Wilson more than the seven times he has lost to the Cardinals. He is 10-7-1 against them in his career. He has 29 touchdown passes and only eight interceptions in those 18 games, but he has been sacked 59 times by the Cardinals, an average of more than three times per game.
Week 17, Dallas Cowboys: No. 6 Dak Prescott
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Prescott comes back after breaking his ankle last season. In 2019, he had more than 4,900 passing yards and threw 30 touchdown passes. He has faced the Cardinals only one, picking up a win. He threw two touchdown passes and rushed for a third but only had 183 passing yards in the win.