QBs won’t test Patrick Peterson, giving Robert Alford a big opportunity

Getty Images

The Cardinals signed Robert Alford to be their No. 2 cornerback this week, shortly after he was cut by the Falcons. And in Arizona, serving as the No. 2 cornerback is a big opportunity.

That’s because the Cardinals’ No. 1 cornerback is Patrick Peterson. And quarterbacks avoid Peterson like no other cornerback in the NFL.

According to the NFL’s Next Gen Stats, Peterson was targeted as the nearest defender on just 50 of his 483 coverage snaps during the 2018 season. That means he was thrown at just 10.4 percent of the time he was in coverage, the lowest rate among all outside cornerbacks in the league.

If quarterbacks won’t throw at Peterson, they’ll be throwing at the cornerback on the other side of the field. Which means it’s easy to picture Alford having a big opportunity to pick off a lot of passes. The Cardinals look like a rebuilding team on offense, but with Peterson and Alford as the starting cornerbacks, they have a defense they can win with right now.