GLENDALE, Ariz. - This was not the first time Kerry Taylor played well in front of these fans, but it may have been the most important.
An Arizona State product who attended Chandler Hamilton High School, Taylor is battling to earn one of the few open receiver spots on the Arizona Cardinals' roster, and missing part of training camp and the team's preseason opener in Green Bay with an injury didn't help his cause.
"It stunk missing the first one, but I knew if I came back and had a strong showing today that it would make up for it," Taylor said after Saturday's 12-7 win over the Dallas Cowboys.
That he did.
But while Taylor's four-catch, 85-yard performance will help his cause, the receiver understands that one good game does not mean he is guaranteed a roster spot.
"I feel good right now, but there's still two weeks to go," he said of his chances of making the team. "One week you could be great, the next week you could be horrible.
"I've just got to keep working and keep doing what I've got to do, be consistent and make plays."
The one play Taylor said he wanted back was a potential second quarter touchdown pass that glanced ever so slightly off his fingers, but that play, which few receivers would have made, did little to dampen what was a very good outing.
"Kerry had a nice ball game; he had a good week of practice, too," Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians said. "It was good to see him back out there because he missed some time and it hurt him."
Arians added that receivers Jaron Brown and Charles Hawkins also played well, so "there's some good battles."
At the very least, the 24-year-old Taylor made himself a strong contender going forward. And at most, the veteran of the Green Bay Packers, New England Patriots, San Francisco 49ers and Minnesota Vikings may have put himself in the lead.
"I feel like I got a lot of opportunities today to make plays," Taylor said. "I felt like I did that. Hopefully I can continue to do that and keep making plays."