Cardinals' decision with top pick muddied by another bad showing

Another loss for the Arizona Cardinals, another step closer to the No. 1 overall pick.

The Cardinals came into Sunday with a 55.4 percent chance of securing the top choice in April's NFL draft, but after losing 40-14 to the Atlanta Falcons that number ballooned to 82 percent. The loss magnified Arizona's needs and showed how tough of a position the team could be in when it goes on the clock that Thursday night in Nashville, Tennessee.

Do they take defensive end Nick Bosa and not look back?

Do they buck popular opinion and take cornerback Greedy Williams?

Do they trade down, stockpile picks and address other needs?

Sunday's dismal showing amplified the Cardinals' need to fix both sides of the ball. An entire overhaul isn't necessary, but significant upgrades are.

"It wasn’t acceptable," coach Steve Wilks said of Sunday's game. "Not even close."

That's not new. The Cardinals have struggled all season and showed why again on Sunday. Arizona (3-11) still needs help on its offensive line, it still needs a second cornerback and it still needs another talented, game-changing wide receiver.

So, where do the Cardinals start?

That'll be the toughest question for team president Michael Bidwill and whoever his general manager and head coach are.

The Cardinals scored 14 points Sunday -- seven of which came in garbage time late in the fourth quarter. Josh Rosen threw two interceptions, including one that was returned for a touchdown, and he was sacked six times. They gained just 79 yards between their first drive, which ended in a touchdown, and a Mike Glennon-led 69-yard drive that found the end zone with 3 minutes, 14 seconds left in the game.

The defense gave up 40 points for the third time this season -- and 40 unanswered at that, the second time in four games the Cardinals gave up 40 or more unanswered points. Arizona also allowed 215 rushing yards, a season high in a year full of big running performances by opposing offenses.

That type of bad football muddies the Cardinals' approach to the first pick.

While Bosa might be the consensus No. 1 pick, according to pundits and experts, the Cardinals don't have a glaring need for another pass-rusher. Chandler Jones is one of the elite edge rushers in the game and Markus Golden, who's in the final year of his contract, has been a steady complement when he's healthy. Golden had a sack Sunday against the Falcons.

One of the Cardinals' priorities -- as seen Sunday with seven sacks allowed, the six on Rosen and one on Glennon -- must be keeping Rosen upright and healthy. There isn't a tackle worthy of going in the draft's top five.

Another of the Cardinals' priorities is the need to pair Patrick Peterson with another top-tier young corner. David Amerson, the Cardinals' third starter of the season at CB2, left the game with a concussion and was replaced with Brandon Williams.

Arizona also needs to bolster its receiving corps, which it might not want to do at No. 1 or elsewhere in the top five.

The Cardinals have to figure out what to do with the No. 1 pick, and that won't be an easy decision with all the issues facing them with two games left.