Rapid Reactions: Cardinals sloppy in Seattle, fall to Seahawks
The Arizona Cardinals do not want to lose games like they did on Thursday, especially in key division matchups on the road.
Arizona lost 28-21 to the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday Night Football in a sloppy game on both sides of the field.
The Cardinals had 10 penalties for 115 yards while the Seahawks had eight for 79 yards.
Arizona safety Budda Baker referred to that aspect of the game being “annoying.”
Here’s what Arizona Sports’ hosts and editors had to say about the loss.
Doug Franz, co-host of Doug & Wolf
Kliff Kingsbury will stand in front of Cardinals fans and take the blame for the loss. Thanks but we already know.
Kliff Kingsbury is a good coach but it’s apparent he doesn’t learn from his mistakes as we all hoped. RUN THE FOOTBALL!! Running the football is like body blows in boxing. You can’t abandon the running game just because you love to throw it.
With the Cardinals’ injury-laden defensive line, it was vitally important to keep them off the field. Running the football on offense gives your defense less time on the field.
Seattle is a shell of what they once were and the Cardinals put up 21 points against the worst defense the NFL has seen in years.
Don’t tell Cardinals fans it was your fault, Coach. Show you’ll do something about it.
Dave Burns, co-host of Burns & Gambo
Instead of seizing the moment, the Cardinals seized up. The obvious jumping off point are the penalties. If this loss is a crime scene, then the penalties are the fingerprints the perp left behind.
Kyler’s intentional grounding (which always makes me wonder if he knows the actual grounding rules). Holding in the end zone for the safety. Dre Kirkpatrick’s killer penalty in which dumb emotion cost the Cards a stop on third down and led to a Seattle touchdown and a 23-14 lead. Patrick Peterson’s PI call that set up a field goal at the end of the half. Those are the kinds of plays that keep good teams from being elite teams.
It didn’t stop there. Peterson’s victory over D.K. Metcalf in the first meeting was short lived. Metcalf’s level of abuse was so thorough that Troy Aikman was telling everyone who would listen that Peterson can’t cover him. Kyler Murray ran for only 15 yards; the Cards as a team only ran for 57. That is not how they’ve made their mark this season. Murray had a banged-up shoulder all game long. Dan Arnold had a big drop. DeAndre Hopkins was quiet for most of the game.
Mostly though Seattle returned to a familiar formula. The Seahawks ran the ball well, played great defense and Russell Wilson didn’t feel the burden of having to make it all happen all the time. The Cardinals lacked the moxie to get the Seahawks off script. A defense that couldn’t touch Murray in the first game hounded him to the tune of three sacks and seven quarterback hits. And while they had a chance at the end, there was no Murray magic to bail them out tonight. Instead it’s a few extra days off to rest, heal and figure out exactly who they’re going to be over the final six games.
Kellan Olson, ArizonaSports.com editor and reporter
This is certainly one to circle if the Cardinals hit a bit of a skid, feeling like a breaking point for the undisciplined football Arizona has played at times throughout the season. It finally caught up to them in a very winnable game, and with the injuries on the defense continuing to pile up, the season is heading in a troubling direction.
The Cardinals had to overcome both the penalties and the run game struggling, which was too much. Arizona averaged only 3.2 yards per carry. Kyler Murray clearly couldn’t get a feel through his shoulder injury for how he usually sees the field as a runner. He was not a factor on the ground, and when that’s the case, the Cardinals are nothing more than an average team.
With that said, he nearly brought them back with his arm. Murray completed 20 of his 28 throws in the second half for 180 yards and two touchdowns. But 21 points against that defense is unacceptable for, again, a team that is supposed to be about a high-powered offense.
It’s a strange loss, especially after the high of the Hail Murray, and Arizona’s got a lot to clean up before traveling to New England to face a team that could very well be coming off three wins in a row.
Jordan Byrd, host of Arizona Sports Saturday and producer of Burns & Gambo
It’s amazing how much can change in just a few days. On Sunday and for the rest of this past week, the Cardinals were the toast of the NFL and beginning to gain some real momentum as a perceived top team in the NFC. Thursday night in Seattle, that all came crashing down.
The Cardinals loss was a sloppy, undisciplined and mistake-filled performance. Both sides of the ball routinely shot themselves in the foot with drive-killing penalties and flags that helped gift the Seahawks points. The two most egregious examples were Dre Kirkpatrick’s taunting penalty that turned a fourth down into a Seattle touchdown just a few plays later. The second was Kyler Murray’s intentional grounding call that led to the holding penalty in the end zone, giving the Seahawks the two points off of the safety. The amount of penalties we have seen this season from the Cards is a poor reflection on the coaching staff and the lack of discipline this team continues to wrestle with.
Speaking of Kyler, it seemed like the injured shoulder he sustained on the first drive of the game took him out of his rhythm for most of the night. He finished with a very respectable stat line through the air, but he just looked off. Making poor decisions on read options and not moving up in the pocket with the pressure barreling down were all on display Thursday night. These are areas where Kyler has been great this season and it makes me wonder if the discomfort he was feeling in his shoulder made him uncomfortable versus the Seattle defense. I thought for a moment that we might get Chris Streveler sighting, and that thought terrified me. It’s no offense to the Cardinals’ inexperienced backup. It’s just for the first time this season, I wondered how this Cardinals offense would really look without Kyler and it wouldn’t be pretty. Thank goodness Arizona has a week and half until its next game.
The Cardinals had no business winning this game and honestly should be happy that they didn’t lose by two or three touchdowns. The game never really felt that close, although the Seahawks largest lead of the game was just nine points. Maybe that’s the sign of a good team that, even playing far from its best, still has a puncher’s chance of winning. Maybe it’s a sign that the NFC West race is filled with teams that are just slightly above average and on any given day can look fantastic or frustratingly mediocre. I think the reality is somewhere in between.
Kevin Zimmerman, ArizonaSports.com editor and reporter
This is the same Cardinals team we’ve seen since Week 1: tremendously inconsistent, always feeling like it can do better and certainly showing up with a different problem by the week.
Kyler Murray remains hit-or-miss depending on the week and the opponent. Teams that take away Arizona’s deep passing attack continue to get him out of rhythm, and it was even uglier when, for whatever reason, the Cardinals couldn’t get the ground attack going against the Seahawks.
Obviously, it’s not all on Murray. He has been mostly great on the turnover front, though his intentional grounding penalty was a killer. Offensive linemen D.J. Humphries and Justin Pugh had multiple penalties each on Thursday, while J.R. Sweezy had the doozy in the end zone just after Murray’s gaffe. Definitely, head coach Kliff Kingsbury will take more heat than he should — but I’m not going to buy that pro football players need coaching to not get a taunting flag after a third-down stop.
The good: The defense riddled by injuries up front held that quarterback and that offense to 28 points. Considering the Cardinals’ offensive performance, that is a win. So is having a chance to win a game you had no business winning. That’s been a theme. Feeling better?
Now to feel worse. It’s 10 games in with only six to go. Time’s running out to determine whether this is a what-if team or whether this is a serious playoff contender.