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A look at the opponents: Arizona Cardinals, Week 2

Posted by Zuri Berry, Boston.com Staff  June 28, 2012 07:00 AM

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Kevin Kolb will need to have a big year for the Arizona Cardinals to play well. (Matt York / AP photo)

Editor's note: This is the second part of a series on the Patriots scheduled opponents in the upcoming season. The following are questions that have been posed to the beat writers of each particular team. In this case, the Arizona Cardinals.

Five questions about the Cardinals heading into training camp with Kent Somers, the beat writer from the Arizona Republic.

Link: http://www.azcentral.com/sports/cardinals/
Twitter: @kentsomers

Date: Sept. 16
Time: 1 p.m.
Location: Gillette Stadium
2011 record: 8-8, second in NFC West
Playoffs: None

1. What is going to be the strength of this team?
The defense. Greatly improved over latter half of 2011. Lots of talent, nice mixture of vets (DT Darnell Dockett, SS Adrian Wilson) with young guys (LB Daryl Washington, CB Patrick Peterson).

2. Where are they looking to get better?
Quarterback play is the key to season. Need to force more turnovers too.

3. Players on the spot?
QB Kevin Kolb and LT Levi Brown, who received a new contract despite a disappointing career.

4. What needs to happen for this team to win big?
Kevin Kolb or John Skelton have to prove they can be a competent starter at quarterback. Stay healthy, especially on defense.

5. Realistic expectations for this team at this point?
I think it's an under the radar team that could contend for the division title. The defense should be elite.

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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