Beanie Wells broke the franchise record for rushing yards in a single game with 228 and Patrick Peterson had an 80-yard punt return for a touchdown as the Arizona Cardinals hung on to defeat the St. Louis Rams 23-20 at the Edward Jones Dome on Sunday. Jay Feely connected on a 22-yard field goal with 4:09 remaining to provide the winning margin.
Wells, who had runs of 71 and 53 yards, scored on a 7-yard touchdown run in the 3rd quarter that gave the Cardinals their first lead with 5:54 left in the 3rd quarter. His final run, a 14-yarder with under two minutes to go, broke the previous record set by LeShon Johnson (214 yards) in a 28-14 win over New Orleans on September 22, 1996.
Less than three minutes after Wells' touchdown run, Peterson returned a Donnie Jones punt 80 yards for a touchdown, his fourth of the season. Peterson became the first player in NFL history to have four punt returns for touchdowns of more than 80 yards in a single season. It was his second punt return touchdown against the Rams this season. His first was a 99-yarder in a 19-13 overtime win in Glendale just three weeks ago.
Player(s) of the Game - Wells obviously had his best day as a pro, and did so after twice getting dinged up on carries. Early in the 4th quarter, Wells fumbled, and got his feet tangled up in the turf. He was helped off the field after being down for several minutes. Just moments later, Wells busted off a 53-yard run that set up Feely's game-winning field goal.
On the defensive side of the ball, there was a lot to be happy about. Rookie OLB Sam Acho registered two sacks, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble.
Skelton struggles again - John Skelton got his fourth consecutive start for the injured Kevin Kolb, and struggled for the second straight week. Skelton completed 12 of 23 passes for 114 yards and threw two interceptions. In the last two weeks, Skelton has completed 18 of 42 passes for 213 yards and 5 interceptions--a quarterback rating of 19.35. He struggled on his throws, missing high to several open receivers.
Total Domination - With the victory over the Rams, the Cardinals have now defeated St. Louis nine times in their last 10 games. It was also the Cardinals' 7th straight win in St. Louis. Their last loss at the Edward Jones Dome happened on opening day of the 2004 season, when the Rams defeated a Cardinals' team led by Josh McCown and Emmitt Smith 17-10.