When Steve Breaston opted to sign a free agent contract with the Kansas City Chiefs this past preseason, there was a lot of talk about the Arizona Cardinals needing to go out and sign a veteran receiver to flank Larry Fitzgerald.
Seemingly every day, there was a new name churning through the rumor mill with a connection to the Cardinals. Braylon Edwards. Malcolm Floyd. Plaxico Burress. Terrell Owens. None of them were signed.
Instead, the Cardinals opted to stay with young receivers Andre Roberts and Early Doucet to do the job. Early on Roberts looked lost as the Cards limped out to a 1-6 lead.
But as the season has worn on, Roberts has looked more comfortable and confident, and that was evident on Sunday.
The second-year man from The Citadel had 6 catches for 111 yards, including two catches for 30 yards on the Cardinals' lone possession in overtime. He also drew a pass interference penalty in that drive and threw a key block during LaRod Stephens-Howling's game-winning touchdown.
The very fact that Fitzgerald is getting paid so much attention from opposing defenses is finally helping Roberts and the Cardinals, whereas it was exploiting a weakness earlier in the year.
"Larry on the other side being double and triple-teamed, even with defensive linemen on him one time," Roberts said. "Kevin looked to my side a little more this game."
His head coach noticed his contributions on the field as well.
"He is blossoming in front of your eyes is what he is doing," said about his young receiver. "You can see his confidence growing every week. He made a number of plays for us and went over 100 yards receiving again. He has done that the last couple of weeks."