Colt McCoy helps flip Arizona Cardinals’ energy in victory over Rams
No Kyler Murray, no problem?
Despite not having their starting quarterback in Week 10, the Arizona Cardinals turned to backup Colt McCoy and left Los Angeles with a 27-17 win over the Rams on Sunday.
McCoy did everything that was asked of him in L.A., completing 26 of his 37 pass attempts (70.3%) for 238 yards and a touchdown.
Utilizing short passes, a quick trigger and Arizona’s run game, head coach Kliff Kingsbury and McCoy went back to what worked so well during the signal caller’s three-game stretch of starts last season that resulted in a pair of victories.
“Colt had a lot to do with (the energy) on offense. His presence, how he carried himself,” Kingsbury told reporters after the game. “Being 36, he understands these opportunities for him don’t come along very often any more. I thought all week during practice, guys felt that. There was a sense of urgency, ‘Hey, I’m going to go out and show what I can do. This is my opportunity.’ When you have that type of energy, I think it carried over.”
Kingsbury wasted little time getting McCoy involved offensively despite working with a patchwork line that featured just one of its original starters in Week 10 due to injuries.
In the first drive alone, McCoy fired off 11 consecutive pass attempts, completing eight, before turning to the run game and knocking in a field goal.
McCoy was quick to get Rondale Moore involved early on during Arizona’s opening possession, completing two of his first three completions to Moore.
A few drives later, McCoy would turn the bulk of his attention to No. 1 option DeAndre Hopkins.
Targeting Hopkins five times during a late second-quarter drive, McCoy and the wideout looked in sync behind four consecutive completions before turning to running back James Conner to cap off the scoring drive with a four-yard TD.
And just when it appeared like McCoy would be held out of the end zone in the first half, the defense dropped a gift in the form of a Myjai Sanders strip-sack right in the lap of the offense.
Needing to travel 30 yards for a last-minute score before the half, Arizona leaned on McCoy’s arm to move the chains, picking up 19 yards through the air on on two attempts before tossing an absolute dime to wide receiver A.J. Green for the six-yard TD.
The throw ✔️
The catch 🔥 pic.twitter.com/0Jn419FcO2
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) November 13, 2022
But for all the good the team rolled out over the first two quarters, the Cardinals found themselves regressing back to their not-so-clean ways in the second half thanks to careless penalties and poor execution.
Then came McCoy’s injury.
Up 17-3, the QB was lit up by linebacker Justin Hollins. He was seen limping off the field before immediately heading to the blue medical tent. The optics didn’t look great, especially with Trace McSorley the next best choice and Murray inactive.
Luckily for Arizona, the extent of McSorley’s afternoon would come in the form of a pair of handoffs before McCoy found his way back onto the football field one Cardinals drive later.
From there, it was right back to the backup’s bread and butter, moving the football behind short passes and quickness.
“That’s a credit to him to be able to do that, first playing time of the season really,” Kingsbury said. “Didn’t do much in training camp, had a couple injuries come up, had an injury to start the season and still to be able to settle in and get the ball out and avoid the negative plays, be efficient, do all those things.
“The whole week during practice, the way he led and the professionalism — there early, stayed late — communication was through the roof. It was awesome to see.”