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Rashad Johnson picks off pair of passes in Arizona Cardinals' win

Arizona Cardinals free safety Rashad Johnson (26) breaks up a pass intended for Atlanta Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals won 27-13. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- It's been just more than a month since Rashad Johnson lost part of a finger in a game against the New Orleans Saints.

Since that time, some have wondered how the, uh, injury would affect the safety. Johnson maintained all along that it would not be a problem, but until he had a chance to prove otherwise, people were likely a bit skeptical.

Sunday, he had his proof.

Johnson intercepted a pair of Matt Ryan passes in Arizona's 27-13 win, playing a key role in the Cardinals' dominant defensive effort. Along with the interceptions, the fifth-year pro contributed a tackle and three passes defensed.

"In this football game, there's so many plays that everybody's going to get an opportunity to make plays throughout the year," Johnson said. "I just wanted to continue not to press because I hadn't had any picks earlier in the season, and I knew they would come."

They did indeed, as Johnson played a good centerfield and was able to get to a couple of passes the quarterback floated down the field.

"You can't make those plays and expect your team to win," Ryan said of his interceptions, of which there were four. "You can't make those plays and think you're giving your team a chance to win."

No doubt it was a rough day at the office for Ryan, but for Johnson, it was an afternoon that was weeks in the making.

"It feels great," Johnson said. "It's a big blessing for me to be able to do what I love week-in and week-out. To go out and play at a high level and have the type of game I had today, I have to give all the thanks to God."

About the Author

School: University of Arizona

When you started with Bonneville Phoenix: Fall 2008, right before Cardinals Super Bowl run

Favorite sports memory: Being at Game 7 of the 2001 World Series with my dad

Favorite all-time athlete: Larry Centers

Favorite sports movies: The Sandlot, Rookie of the Year, Jerry Maguire

Most crushing sports moment: Grew up in Arizona and went to UA from 2002-06. In short, there are too many to name just one.


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