Arizona Cardinals RB James Conner scores 16th TD in MNF loss to Rams
Dec 13, 2021, 10:22 PM | Updated: Dec 14, 2021, 12:38 am
(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Death, taxes, James Conner touchdowns and one-handed grabs.
The Arizona Cardinals running back was back at it again in Week 14’s 30-23 loss to the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football at State Farm Stadium.
With the Cardinals trailing 10-3 with just over three minutes remaining in the opening half, Arizona faced a 4th-and-goal from the LA one-yard-line.
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury elected to give it to his bell cow of a running back for an easy one-yard TD run to bring the score to a 10-10 tie.
JAMES CONNER. TOUCHDOWN MACHINE 😤pic.twitter.com/bAl4D7HKd0
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) December 14, 2021
Conner’s 16 scores on the year rank as the third-most in a single season in Cardinals franchise history.
His 14 rushing touchdowns this season are also a career high.
“I’m just walking my walk. That’s all it is,” Conner said after the game. “Just trying to work hard week in and week out.
“Trying to do all the little things just to cut it loose on Sundays, have fun, play with passion and just play hard — give effort. Effort takes no talent. I feel like I just try to give it my all. … I’m just trying to prove myself right, really. Just work hard.”
Conner finished the game with two rushing touchdowns and 31 rushing yards to go along with 94 receiving yards a team-high nine catches.
Earlier in the first quarter on a 3rd-and-3 from the Rams’ 22-yard-line, quarterback Kyler Murray found Conner for a one-handed 18-yard grab for a first down inside LA’s five.
.@JamesConner_ snatched it with one hand 😱 #RedSea
📺: #LARvsAZ on ESPN
📱: https://t.co/Z9HeRUNm0d pic.twitter.com/jHlTkMsbFV
— NFL (@NFL) December 14, 2021
“I think he had my arm so that’s all I had was one hand,” Conner said jokingly. “Honestly, it was breaking in and it was kind of coming on me quick.
“I was getting my style points, so I was just trying to make a play. … I ain’t bragging, but I’m just trying to play football, trying to play fast. It came up on me quick so it just happened to be one hand. But hard or not hard, I’m not sure. I’m just trying to play fast.”
The one-handed snag is the RB’s fifth on the 2021 season, the most in the NFL this year, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
Unfortunately for the Cardinals, Murray was picked off two plays later after his pass was deflected at the line of scrimmage by Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald.
Conner’s grab is also his second in as many weeks following his 23-yard one-handed catch and score in Arizona’s 33-22 road win over the Chicago Bears.